It may be the “tramp stamp” in America, but in Japan the tattoo remains an underground art, long associated with the yakuza, or organized crime. Some modern tattoo artists are hoping to change that, while simultaneously keeping alive the time-honored approach of their craft. Traditional Japanese tattooing, or horimono, doesn’t use an electric needle. Instead, its adherents hand-ink with needles attached to long, thin bamboo handles, which are thrust repetitively into the skin. Needless to say, the technique is difficult to master. One of the few Americans trained in it, Takahiro Kitamura, aka Horitaka, who apprenticed with master tattoo artist Horiyoshi III in Japan, gives a live... More >>>