Interview with Sabina Gart

  Hello Sabina Gart! Thank you so much for taking the time to do this interview. Please start by telling us something about yourself and your background. Do you have any formal art training or you are a self taught artist? I am Sabina Gart, currently residing and creating in the enchanting city of Paris, which has held my heart for many years. My career began in Saint Petersburg, Russia, where I first envisioned myself as an artist. Though my aspirations led me to the world of tattoo artistry, overcoming societal stereotypes was a challenge. Nonetheless, with the unwavering support of my closest friend, I embarked on an apprenticeship under a renowned tattoo master. Years of dedication and countless seminars with industry luminaries honed my craft. Amidst the upheaval of war, we hastily relocated to Paris, embracing new beginnings.

Q: Outside tattoo art, What type of art do you like the most? Do you feel inspired by some art style? Any favorite artists?
A: I really love architecture. That’s why I choose Paris and painting of course.

Q: What got you interested in tattoo art?
A: The concept that an individual, with their unique life and daily rhythm, will carry a fragment of my creativity throughout their entire existence is profound. After six years of tattooing and few thousand of clients I’m trying not think about it anymore :)

Q: How it all started?
A: Ah my first tattoo on human skin was a portrait of Salvador Dali. I remember that I was so afraid, it was something like an exam. After that, I began to tattoo my friends and the others customers who just wanted a tattoo no matter the quality. Now, looking back, I wouldn't want to go through that again.

Q: I bet it took some time to gain confidence... What thought or "mantra" kept you motivated to continue learning and trying to get better?
A: I think it’s about - to be better than you were yesterday. Analyse your mistakes.

Q: Oh would you do a cover up on those old, beginner tattoos?
A: Yep, they are some… wow

Q: How long took you to figure out your creative direction? Why tattoo realism?
A: It was natural, I always loved it. Realism or surrealism, in drawing and painting.

Q: What do you like the most about this style?
A: I love that in 2D you can create the perspective, the depth full of light.

Q: Here precision is the bare minimum, people really expect that hyper realistic look, so I think this style can be a creatively "limiting" how do you feel about this? Do you try to add some interesting details like decorative elements, backgrounds, just to get that unique, personalized design?
A: I believe that the person having the tattoo makes each piece unique. No two individuals have the same lion tattoo. But yes, we add a distinct touch to each project with decorative elements.

Let's talk a little bit about the clients. I think it's very important to have a good energy in the studio and of course an open mind and a friendly attitude as an artist. Let's not forget, you're "marking" them for life.

Sure, if there’s some bad vibe, we won’t work together. It happens sometimes. But normally, being open minded, we have good connection each time. We understand, that the client wants something important on their skin, therefore we should listen. The mood is not the same if we do a tattoo in honor of a deceased person or a new born.

Q: Do you suggest your clients some ideas or advise them when it comes to better placement etc?
A: It’s work for both of us, they have an idea, I have an experience. Only together we find the best solution.

Q: Have you ever tried to change someone's mind about a certain design or maybe even refuse to do it?
A: I recall a particular instance when I declined to create a portrait of a young woman whom the client admired, though she wasn't his romantic partner. Several months later, he returned to cover it. Sometimes I explain them why a certain tattoo will look better this way or the other way. Usually, with the portraits, I'm trying to find something unique about the person we tattoo and make a personalized design, instead of just tattooing a face.

Q: What about those who don't know what they want but for sure they want to get a tattoo from you? How do you handle the indecisive clients?
A: In this case I ask a lot of questions, we have a big discussion and try to get some idea. What is important for the customer, what are their hobbies, what they love. But anyway we take few months before booking an appointment.

Q: I assume you're very busy, therefore a good planned schedule is crucial. Do you have any rules for clients who may change their mind "last minute" and want a completely different design?
A: Oh I don’t like is. And I’m very strict. If it’s just few days before the session, I cancel it, postpone it for maybe one day, to come back with an idea… if that's not the case, they are not really ready for getting a tattoo.

Q: Many reveal their story during the sessions, so I bet many were touching and even thought provoking. How do you feel about this energy exchange? Do you have any favorite moment or just simply a favorite tattoo you did recently?
A: I find great joy in engaging with my customers, each with their own fascinating journeys. Among them, there’s one woman who holds a special place in my heart - she shares my commitment to veganism. Together, we collaborated on a poignant leg sleeve design depicting various animals afflicted by human actions. The experience was deeply moving and I felt a profound sense of connection and inclusion.

Q: If you were starting today, what would you do differently?
A: Good question. I think I would concentrate more on the style I prefer and take more seminars, workshops etc.

Q: It's very difficult to succeed in today's tattoo world. With so many new, young and incredibly talented artists, social media pressure and high quality level of art, therefore different standard. It's not the 2000s anymore. But at the same time, I think we should be glad and celebrate the progress. How do you see modern tattooing and the tattoo world in general, do you like it?
A: Yep it’s not the same like in 2000, but I began in 2017, so this world was already like we see it now. It motivates. To be better, to do better, to learn. It's not only to be famous and have 100k+followers, It’s about high quality work.

Q: What do you like the most about being a tattoo artist?
A: I love the ambiance of art, the creativity, the painting and the idea that it’s for life.

Q: Where are you located?
A: I’m in Paris, “Jolis Crimes” tattoo shop.
Instagram: sabina_g_art
My booking is open.

Q: A few encouraging words for those who want to try getting into professional tattooing?
A: Do it for love and not for money, like that you will have a both. Because if you do it only for money it will be a job like the others. If you do it for love, it will be a pleasure every day.