Perhaps the underdog of Best Ink 2, Alli started the season as a Bottom Three regular and worked all the way up to the final four. Unfortunately, we finally had to let her go last night... but not before letting her speak her piece. Read on to hear about Alli's experience on the show and the side of her that viewers may not see.
Were you nervous to square off with Jerod?
No, not at all. I think everyone is an amazing artist at this point in the show. I was excited to tattoo off with Jerod!
Did you agree with the judges’ decision to keep Jerod and send you home?
No, of course not. As an artist we all have the style that we love and our own personal taste in artwork. I prefer large color tattoos instead of portrait style. I wish Jerod the best of luck during the show!
If you could go back and do the tattoo differently, would you? If so, what would you do differently?
I'd ease my brother into it more before we started tattooing. I got a late start on the tattoo, and I think my brother was a little nervous about the whole thing. When we got started things were going well. I would love to have done a background but due to the late start I decided to focus on the main piece. I love the tattoo I did not only for Best Ink, but because of its personal connection with my brother and the tattoo speaks on our relationship and the hardships we had. The bond of this was amazing and this tattoo has personal meaning to me beyond Best Ink.
Was it easier or harder to tattoo for your brother, someone you know?
It's always more difficult to tattoo someone you care about, because you see the tattoo all the time and as you grow as an artist and your style changes you still see the tattoo you did on a loved one. But as an artist I stay humble and constantly grow from every experience.
You said that you didn’t feel like you were able to be your total self during the show. Why is that?
Yes, I am a very confident artist and have been tattooing since 2004, and always have 100% say in how things roll. Best Ink is a highly stressful situation and you're always taken by surprise which helps you adapt to new situations and grow as an artist. I always have a great relationship with my clients and always put the tattoo on the body where we both agree it is compositionally pleasing. In my normal day to day at the shop it's a stress-free, fun and loving environment. I'm a funny and caring artist who is constantly learning new things and open to most ideas presented. I'm always very professional and confident in my work and it shows in beautiful tattoos. Also at home there are no time limits and I can take as much time and really get to know my client on a personal level which makes for a better tattooing experience for the both of us.
What side of you do you wish the viewers could have seen more of?
My funny and sarcastic scene of humor and my humble personality because I know there's always something to be learned in every situation. I wish the viewers saw more of me with my clients and more of my tattoo work, and I wish they could see an artist who has worked very hard and for many years to do the best possible tattoo, where I take my time and double check things so that I don't make mistakes. I have learned through other people that if you're vain or narcissistic you make more mistakes and people don't respect a person thats full of themselves or a fake person as well.
What have you been up to recently?
I have done a few tattoo conventions, and i'm also organizing a tattoo tour through the U.S. with other amazing artists from all over. I also have been working on guest spots. I'm working on a joint project that is a charity for children and I'm very excited about that. Also in the works for the tour to donate % of the profit to a women's education program which is in the planning stage. Very exciting stuff!
What’s in your tattooing future?
Lots of traveling and conventions and guest spots... working on touring and working on art books! You will more than likely be seeing me in a city near you!
What did you take away most from your experiences on Best Ink?
All the artists were amazing in their own ways and you can learn anything from anyone. The opportunity for people nationwide to see my artwork was amazing. Thank you so much and I will always remember this for my whole life, the up's and the downs. If you love my artwork and want to contact me you can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org or Facebook at www.facebook.com/Alli.Baker.Tattoo.ink.art.
Tune into the Season Finale of 'Best Ink 2' Wednesday June 5 at 10/9c!