10 of the best Calgary tattoo artists to get inked by

Mar 3 2021, 12:03 pm

To say tattooing has grown in popularity over the past decade would be a massive understatement.

It seems more common these days to find someone with 10 tattoos than to find someone with none, and much of that is largely due to the influence of social media.

Tattoo artists and their work can now easily be viewed on Instagram, and this has caused an explosion in the discovery of tattoo artist’s work.

Calgary offers some of the best tattoo artists you can find (when studios aren’t shut down by a pandemic), no matter what style you’re looking for. Spring and summer are right around the corner, creating a great opportunity to show off some fresh ink.

Here are 10 talented YYC tattoo artists whose work you have to check out.

Alix Au


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The Old Crow Tattoo Parlour

Alix Au is relatively fresh in the tattoo game with six years of experience, but she is already providing some of the best and most creative blackwork in Calgary.

Au manages to make all of her black tattoos pop with a gritty, dynamic energy. Whether you are looking for solid black, shaded, textured, or even Trash Polka style, Alix Au is the artist to consult with.

Address: 203 7A Street NE, Calgary
Phone: 587-356-4411


Scott Veldhoen


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Eternal Image Tattoo

Scott Veldhoen is a tattoo master of many different styles and approaches. He can do it all, from Japanese to traditional American, tribal to geometric — anything that makes a good, long lasting tattoo. He books three months in advance.

Address: 1209 10th Avenue SE, Calgary
Phone: 403-228-3958


Rick Wilson


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Kensho Tattoo

Rick Wilson just might be the best artist in YYC for a Japanese-style tattoo, or Horimono. Horimono are the engraved images and carvings in the blade of a Japanese sword. The word also refers to the act of tattooing in Japan, which typically involves covering the entire body in this traditional style.

Of course, you don’t have to get a full body piece (although you could.)

Address: 320 10th Street NW #202, Calgary
Phone: 403-454-9500


Dan Cameron

Ambassador Tattoo

Dan Cameron has been tattooing for over fifteen years and, in that time, has become incredible at the style he loves. Cameron is a great artist for any project, but it’s his clean lines and large piece work that separate him from the rest.

His massive and beautiful tattoos – in colour and in black and white – are a common sight on his Instagram page. He has created some of the most inventive and gorgeous large-scale work in the city, making him a great go-to for back pieces, sleeves, and everything in between.

Address: 108 – 7500 Macleod Trail SW, Calgary
Phone: 403-253-9099


Joel Mijker


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Wild Rose Tattoo Company

American traditional tattooing is an extremely recognizable style. It features smooth lines and bold blacks with other supporting colours such as reds, yellows, and greens. It’s the Sailor Jerry-style of tattooing, often using eagles, ships, skulls, and the like.

Joel Mijker’s style uses these principles, with his own originality and vision added to create bold, one-of-a-kind tattoos that appeal to fans of traditional tattooing and neo-classical.

Address: 815 1st Street SW, Calgary
Phone: 403-454-7673


Ash Kendall


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Smilin’ Buddha Tattoo

After a tattooing journey across Canada, Kendall now works at the Canadian legacy shop Smilin’ Buddha, started by tattoo icon Paul Jeffries.

Kendall has a careful eye, frequently tattooing freehand and organically. Her style is often of radiograph botany, florals, and foliage that seems to dissipate into ethereal transparent smoke that wraps around the curvature of the body.

Address: 1501 17th Avenue SW, Calgary
Phone: 403-242-5922


Paulo Da Butcher

Strange World

Paulo Da Butcher seems to be able to do it all, while always maintaining his own style in the process. He does fantastic greyscale, traditional, Japanese, portrait, and wildlife tattoos.

Address: 5403 Crowchild Trail NW, Calgary
Phone: 403-282-8181




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Gypsy Rose Tattoos & Piercing

Demara is the lady to see for a wide variety of styles, but she really excels in fine line detail and realistic colour work. Small or large, black or bright and colourful, you’ll be in great hands with Demara at the always friendly Gypsy Rose shop.

Address: 3132 26 Street NE, Calgary
Phone: 403-275-9844


Jonathan Huynh


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Skull and Lotus Tattoo

Huynh is one of the best artists in YYC when it comes to tattooing images of manga and anime content. He has worked on entire sleeves dedicated to his clients’ favourite stories, along with small frames from iconic scenes.

The animated characters of Japanese pop culture seem to pop off the screen, and Huynh manages to capture not only their likeness, but also their energy.

Address: 5824 2nd Street SW, Calgary
Phone: 403-255-5359


Marigold Santos


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Marigold Santos is an all-around artist. She has worked and taught in several major Canadian cities, sharing her unique style through both tattooing and art installations.

Santos immigrated to Canada from the Philippines, and her tattoos reflect that experience. She creates black, brushlike art on her clients’ skin, often with images that represent her cultural identity.

Her non-traditional designs have made her an extremely sought after artist in Canada and beyond.

Email: [email protected]


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