Meet the Contestants of 'Best Ink 3': Karly Cleary

By Oxygen

Karly Cleary (@KarlyCleary)

Southhampton, PA

Karly Cleary is a mother before anything else. She had her son, Rivers, at 17 and gave up a full ride to art school to take care of him. Karly was encouraged to take up tattooing when a friend saw her artwork in a community college class. She didn't know anything about being a tattoo artist, but quickly gained an appreciation for the art when she started her apprenticeship. Karly has been tattooing for eight years now and currently works at Davidian Tattoo Studio, specializing in photorealism. Karly lost her mother at a young age and she lives a drug-free, healthy lifestyle eating only vegan foods. Karly married her longtime boyfriend last November. Her husband has a young son whose name is Sky, and Karly says they are a "clichéd hippie family." 

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