Mural project in Oak Park

Immediately outside of Chicago’s west side is the village of OakPark. It’s where I’ve been tattooing and spending a good portion of my time for the last several years.  One of the nice things about OakPark is it’s investment in the arts.  If you take an afternoon to walk around you’ll see public sculptures, a large handful of Frank Lloyd Wright houses, and a growing number of murals.

A few years ago the village of OakPark started selecting local and nonlocal artists to paint murals along the concrete embankment that the Green line runs on.  This year I submitting a proposal and was accepted as one of the artists.  I’d never done a piece this large before, but I’ve been painting quite a bit this last year and was up for the challenge.  I’m really happy with how it turned out, as was the village.  So much so that they featured my piece in the local paper!   I look forward to doing more projects like this in the future, in OakPark and elsewhere.  I would like to publicly thank the Oak Park Arts council for giving me this opportunity, and for investing in the arts as much as it does.  It really does make my day more fulfilling to be surrounded by art instead of just concrete.  Here’s a couple photos of the finished piece

As always, thanks for reading.  To check out more work and see my more day to day tattoos and sketches, follow me on instagram username Futureteller

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Sketches up for grabs

Every now and then when I have some free time I like to try to whip out a handful of sketches that aren’t for anyone or anything in particular.  It gives me a chance to branch off from the usual imagery in my work and experiment with some new ideas.  Or in some cases, is just a good exercise and provides some study.  Over the past month I had such free time and came up with this small collection.  Most of these are oriented as tattoos, so as always, if they spark your interest and you’re in any of the areas I work out of, feel free to get in touch and let me know.  If the piece is still available, you could become the proud owner of it on your body!

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What I’ve been up to

Well, it’s been a busy spring.  I’ve been on a lot of trips lately tattooing at Seventh Son Tattoo in San Francisco, Optic Nerve Arts in Portland, and Shogun Tattoo in Milwaukee.  It was a good run.  I got to hang out with some good friends and clients, and of course, do some fun tattoos.

I’m back in Chicago for the moment and am trying to buckle down on a number of art projects including finishing a series of paintings for an as of yet undated showing, and working on a mural in Oak Park along the Metra track.  So all that has been keeping me pretty busy.  Of course I’ve been keeping busy with tattooing as well, and am really stoked on the projects I’m getting a chance to wrap up this year.  I’ll post a few in the gallery as well as on the blog here, but as anyone who knows me or follows my site knows, updates are few and far in between. So if you want to be more clued in as to what’s going on with my travel schedule, or just see more of the work I’m posting, then try checking out my instagram account under username Futureteller, or my facebook account www.facebook.com/gifford.kasen

Enough about what I’ve been doing, here’s some pictures of new tattoos and artwork

Flowers and waves

Bird Skull

Here’s a few in progress pieces I’ve been working on.  These were all tattooed around the Chicago/Milwaukee area and have mostly been done over late 2012-early 2013.

Tree and mushrooms

This piece is two sessions in so far, being worked on in Portland, and is on my good buddy Jeffrey.  The skull on the upper arm was done while I was living there in 2009, so sortof a big change in styles from then.  I’ll probably go back into the skull and rework a bit of it to pull the whole piece together.

Skull tattoo

Here’s a couple more from Chicago.  The skull was a walk in that I got to have some fun with.   The owl is on a longer term client.  We will be adding background to it after he gets the spider web and some other stuff lasered.

Skull art

Lastly, every month this year I’ve been doing a skull drawing and releasing a limited edition of five prints.  This was the original for April. The prints themselves each have an original sketch done over them in red ink.  If you’re interested in grabbing one, or setting up a tattoo appointment, shoot me an email at gifford@futuretellertattoo.com.  There’s only five each month, so they go fast.

As always, thanks for looking, and creep hard.

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New Artwork

Someday I’ll get on top of keeping this website/blog up to date……. ahh well.  I’ve been churning out a lot of new drawings lately.  I’ll post a few up here and in the artwork portion of the website.  But if you want to stay a little more in the loop follow me on instagram, username Futureteller.  I usually post a few new pieces a week on there, including sketches that are up for grabs to get tattooed for anyone in the Chicago area.

I’ve also started a BigCartel site where artwork and other stuff is available for purchase.  www.futureteller.bigcartel.com   It’s in it’s beginning stages right now, but I should be adding a bunch of new content soon.  To kick that off I’ve been making some prints (February’s is available now).  Each month will be a different piece.  They’re limited runs of 5.  Each print is hand painted on, so each of the five will be slightly different.  So check it out and scoop one if you’re into it.

Ok, here’s some new work to check out.

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New tattoos

Spring usually gets really busy for me, so I haven’t had a whole lot of time to keep up with the computer stuff. Mostly I’ve just been keeping my head down and doing a lot of tattooing at Skin Abrasions. A little traveling, a bit of painting, and as much biking around Chicago as I have time for (not much.) We were lucky enough to have Jeff Croci of Seventh Son in San Fransisco come visit us last month, and I got a little tattoo work done from him and Marco. Currently we have Su Houston Visiting us from New York. So like I said, it’s been a busy Spring.
I also just moved apartments, so I haven’t been as active with the paintings as I’ve been getting settled in. I have been getting into gardening and plants a bunch, and if I don’t kill everything I’ve been growing before it matures, I’ll post some cool indoor gardening pictures in the future. For now though, it will just be some tattoos.

Recently did these portraits of Christian’s grandparents.
One of these is a little fresh, and there’s going to be some stuff added to the background, so look for healed photos in the gallery in the future.

Here’s one of them all healed up

Well we’re on portraits, here’s a pretty ridiculous one of Edith Massey’s character from Desperate Living. This is part of a John Waters themed sleeve on a client in San Fransisco. Annnd it’s pretty awsome. Devine, of course, takes up most of the forearm.
Edith Massey tattoo
Here’s a sleeve I started t the Chicago Tattoo Convention. Pretty stoked on it, and can’t wait to get the next session in.
biomech tattoo
Here’s a sneak peak at a robotic Armour sleeve I’ve been working on in Milwaukee. Alot of work to go on it still, but the lower half is starting to come together.

robotic sleeve tattoo

robo biomech sleeve

steampunk tattoo
These are only a few of the pieces I’ve been working on (mainly the ones that the pictures turned out on. ha!) so hopefully I’ll have another big photo update in June. Don’t forget to follow my facebook, and possibly soon instagram if I get on that, as I post other photos on both of those.
Thanks for looking, and as always, feel free to share if you’re into it

-Gifford

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Chicago Tattoo Arts Convention

I will be working the Chicago Tattoo Arts convention this April 13-15th at the Crown Plaza Hotel in Rosemont. Really excited to have this show back in Chicago. It hasn’t been here since 2008 so expect a pretty big turnout. I currently have one appointment open on the Friday and one on the Saturday. I don’t expect those to last very long so hit me up if you want to grab one.

Chicago has had some boner shows in the past, but take my word for it, Troy Timple throws a good show.  I hope all my regulars in the city can make it out to show some support, say hi, get your tattoos photographed by the magazines, and have grab a beer with me.

Click the image here for more info.

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New airbrush piece

Rocked out another biomech airbrush piece the other day.  This one is called “Worm.” Quality is a little better then the last one and I added some audio.  The process for this is more or less the same as the one I wrote about in the previous post.  I had a lot of fun making this one and hope to make more content like this soon.  Maybe some tattoo videos?  We’ll see.  Anyways, here it is, enjoy.

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Going to San Francisco

I’m very excited to announce that I will going to San Francisco for a guest spot at the amazing Seventh Son tattoo studio. I will be in the studio working April 19-22nd.  Appointments are filling up, but I still have a few open spots.  If you’re interested in setting something up please email me directly through my site.  I usually get to SF a couple times a year, so larger multi session pieces are not a problem.  This will be my first time working at Seventh Son, I am honored to be invited and look forward to having some great tattoo hangs while I’m there.

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Awesome Stick Insect video

Holy crap this critter is rad. Not much to do with tattooing or art, but this is the kind of stuff that influences me. Check it!

Stick Insect Video

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Quick clips of a biomech painting

I’ve started playing around with some stop motion video apps on my phone. I’m still getting the hang of it and working on some tweaks, but I wanted to post a couple of airbrush sessions I did on a recently finished piece. It turned out ok, but the quality leaves a bit to be desired. Next one I’ll bump the resolution a bit. The main problem seems to be the amount of frames necessary to make the video, the quality of the frames, and what my phone can handle before it starts to glitch out. Oh well, maybe time to invest in some better equipment. I plan on making some more of these in the near future to collaborate with some music buddies of mine on some promo videos. So stay tuned for that. Anyways you kind get a glimpse into my process for this type of art here. I usually don’t approach these pieces with too much forethought. Maybe a loose idea of subject matter. This one I started with the idea of a bull skull, with the horns being the focal point. So you can sort of see me roughly sketching that out in the beginning. I quickly scrap the skull part of it,but like the horns. I’ve been working with alot of finger-like forms lately, so those crept into the piece towards the bottom. Once the general composition was something I was happy with I started building up the darker values to see how the layers would separate. Then I added a layer of textures. Alot of mechanical ones with some scribbley organic stuff over it.

After that it’s alot of layering, deepening values, adding white, adding texture, etc…. until it’s more or less where I want it to be. Then I like to go through it with some stencils and sharpen up some of the edges to give it a strong mechanical look. There’s a few little tricks at the end of the piece I left out, cause, well, I can’t give away everything in my first video.

As I said the quality isn’t the best, so here’s a photo of the finished piece

Matador, by FutureTeller

"Matador"

I’m calling it “Matador” based on the initial idea of the piece. Thanks for checking it out, and please share and repost this if it interests you. Almost every piece I post on here is for sale as well,so shoot me an email through my site www.futuretellertattoo.com if you’re interested.

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