Artist Shaun Parker Goes from Fitness Instructor to Classic Tattoo Artist

Inspired By The Greats

Parker isn’t your typical tattoo artist. He’s not one for having tons of designs sitting around the place for people to go through and pick out of a book. Parker’s work is more about the challenge of designing a bespoke piece. He believes that art should represent the person. He claims classical artist Michelangelo as his inspiration, and with good reason.

When Michelangelo did the Sistine Chapel, there was no copy to work from, and all the ideas had to flow from his own head. Parker hopes that one day he can see the chapel himself with his own eyes to truly admire the work of that classical giant.

Pivoting Through COVID-19

Like most small businesses, Parker’s studio suffered during the lockdowns. However, as an artist, he was still able to find work, just not doing tattoos. He spent a lot of time working on logo design, canvases, and prints, which allowed him to reword his portfolio. He realized, after taking some time off from tattooing, that it was affecting his perspective.

Now, he has a much more extensive portfolio of work, including experimental pieces. He also realized that he wanted to focus on marketing more to skin collectors instead of the average tattoo enthusiast since they may appreciate his dedication to uniqueness so much more.

Leveraging the Power of Networking

Parker became a BKLYN Commons member in 2018, and his shop is located in the Bushwick location. Before the pandemic, he slowly started to reach out to his neighbors, build professional connections, and learn about the others that shared the site and the professional network. Since BKLYN Commons isn’t a traditional storefront, many people who visit his location don’t know about the other businesses housed there. Parker makes it his business to give them a grand tour of the area and promote his neighbors. He believes that this helps both his network and the client since they know where they can support small businesses in the area.

Parker believes that the community spirit in the area is responsible for helping the location grow and be prosperous. He is also aware that unless people choose to support small businesses, they will begin to fade away. He advises all of his clients that investing in a small business isn’t a single purchase but a long-term thing. Other locally-owned businesses like Mystic Owl Tattoo echo his sentiments. With local support, even the smallest of commercial districts can survive the current economic upheavals.


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