Warren Morissens / MXW (BE), tattoo artist, Antwerp



“Blacking out my arm has been one of the best tattoo-related decisions I have ever made. I always thought the sight of it was really impressive and when I started to grow tired of the tattoos on my arm I just started covering the whole thing. People often ask me if I regret ‘losing’ the tattoos that were underneath the black. There might have been a couple of good tattoos there, but I’m much happier with the way my arm looks now.


The other arm followed, but there were some tattoos on that one I didn’t want to give up. The blast-over technique, which means tattooing over older tattoos in a way that they can still be seen, worked perfect for that one. I love how the bold dark lines contrast with the underlying colour tattoos. The same technique was used for the Jesus-head on my chest. I’m not planning on blacking out more parts of my body, but who knows? I wasn’t really planning on this a few years ago, so we’ll see what I come up with next. I know some people who are into tattoos have this clear image of how they want themselves and their tattoos to look in a few years. I really, really don’t. I see something I like, try to think about it a while and usually get it tattooed. That’s a recipe for regret, some might think, but it has always worked for me. Of course I have some tattoos I would have done different if given another chance, but that’s not something that keeps me up at night.


The reason people get tattooed is their business. I do try to make them think about their decisions; I don’t want anyone with one of my tattoos to regret it. And sometimes my advice is necessary, because some ideas are just dumb. Really, you wouldn’t believe the crazy demands we get. I believe it’s a tattoo-artist’s job to make adjustments and explain the client why you’re doing them, and convince them they are for the better. They’ll thank you and you’ll have their trust afterwards as soon as they see how the tattoo turned out better than they could have imagined.”