Fine Art Meets Tattoo

Fine Art Meets Tattoo Art to make One Sick Buffy Fan Art Tatt

Many fine artists are excited to have their paintings or drawings shown in galleries. Sometimes if they’re very fortunate a piece might just be liked well enough to get it permanently added to someone’s skin in the form of a tatt.

This is one of such story and how Low brow Fine Artist Apricot Mantle worked together with Tattoo Artist Eric Backlund to translate his piece, “Night of the Living Buffy” into a full sleeve tattoo for a client.

The Original Buffy Drawing by Apricot Mantle


From Drawing to Tattoo

Many tattoo artists create original designs for clients but they also get requests to recreate photos or illustrations done by other artists. This is a pretty intimidating process because as a tattoo artist you not only have to make something that lives up to the clients expectations, but also make sure you nail design so that when people compare it to the original it’s spot on.

Eric and Apricot live and work in completely different States. Eric is the owner of Skin Illustrations Tattoo Shop in New Jersey on the East Coast and Apricot lives and works in Los Angeles on the West Coast. When Apricot met Eric through Instagram he was honored to see that someone had picked his drawing to be tattooed on her body.

Buffy Tattoo Session with Eric Backlund


Buffy Tattoo Session with Eric Backlund


Buffy Tattoo in Progress by Eric Backlund


Eric masterfully recreated every inch of this Buffy the Vampire piece as a full sleeve on a clients leg in a few sessions. Check out the side by side and see for yourself. When he sent the first sessions results over to Apricot he was stoked to see how well the results turned out so far. The client and super Buffy the Vampire Slayer fan was also extremely happy too, but the tattoo was not yet finished.

Buffy Tattoo by Eric Backlund




Fill The Gap

This is where things got a little interesting and these guys show you how artists working together with different backgrounds can bring about great results. Since this was a drawing that was not originally designed to be a full-wrap tattoo there was a gap that was left on the back of the leg. This was intentional, but later the client decided she wanted it to connect somehow. Eric knew from past experience that when it comes to adding more art to a tattoo it usually works best to go with the original artist and ask for help. Eric hit up Apricot and asked if he could create a custom drawing to fill in the gap. Apricot was happy to come up with additional artwork to help complete this sleeve and revisit the piece. Since the original drawing was sold in a past gallery show he did not have the original. So Eric sent him pictures of the full tattoo including the gap that needed filling. They came up with the idea and also with the client to create some kind of wicked tree to fill in the gap. Somehow it just seemed to make sense from looking at the negative space the gap created.

The “gap”


Apricot got busy and slammed out a dead tree to match the grave yard scene that the zombie-fied Buffy was crawling out of the grave in. By using the photos Eric sent previously he was able to design the tree freehand and used the same color palette and lighting from the main Buffy piece. This will allow Eric to take over and blend the new tree drawing seamlessly into the gap on the client’s leg making it a complete sleeve.


Tree Sketch by Apricot Mantle


Tree Line Drawing by Apricot Mantle


Final Tree Drawing by Apricot Mantle


The client loved the tree and is excited she had a custom tree drawn to finish her sweet tatt! She is going to have it finished in October so we look forward to seeing the final tattoo.

buffy-tree-post 1


Apricot says: ” I love creating horror art based on everyone’s beloved characters. When I made this Buffy piece it was intended to be a mashup of ‘Buffy’ and ‘Night of the Living Dead’. I am just so glad that someone had such a connection with the piece to get it tatted up on them! I am glad I could help the tattoo artist finish this the way it should be. And I don’t know how to tattoo so the fact that Eric made this piece on SKIN!… is just mind blowing! I have the utmost respect for tattoo artists and the media they work in. Now I have a go to guy if people want more of my art tattooed on them.”

Check out more of their work:

Eric Backlund – Tattoo Artist
Instagram: @sketchisms
Twitter: @sketchisms

Apricot Mantle – Fine Artist
Instagram: @apricotmantle
Twitter: @apricotmantle

Thanks a lot to Apricot Mantle and Eric Backlund to have given us the opportunity to see how a fine art drawings becomes a living skin art!


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