By Appointment Only: Dr. Woo Curates "The Doctor's Office" Pop-Up SpaceThe tattoo artist on fashion and his craft.
Recently LANDMARK MEN hosted “Appreciate The Craft,” inviting Dr. Woo to Hong Kong to be a part of the event that celebrated innovators in their creative field. Dr. Woo is distinguished as the most in-demand tattooist in the world and attaining a highly coveted appointment can take up to one year. Globally recognized for his signature single-needle, black and gray works of art, the humble doctor’s clientele consists of some of the world’s most influential in fashion and entertainment including Drake, G-Dragon, Miley Cyrus, Cara Delevingne and Kendall Jenner, just to name a few.
As part of the “Appreciate The Craft” event, Dr. Woo brought a little part of his LA studio to LANDMARK MEN by curating a pop-up space entitled “The Doctor’s Office.” Featured in the space was Dr. Woo’s personal favorite tattoo works and his standout fashion staples. During the event, we caught up with the world-renowned tattoo artist and talked a little bit about the space he curated and his thoughts on tattoos and fashion.
As we know “The Doctor’s Office” will feature some fashion staples. How did you go about choosing those items? Also, what kind of fashion pieces do you like the most?
I wanted to infuse my personal aesthetic into the space with timeless staple pieces that also have a little bit of edge to them. For myself, I’m most interested in vintage items – they come with so much history and you can see and smell the stories on them. I like being able to add my own stories to each piece that I wear.
You’ve had some collaborations with fashion brands in the past, what do you think is the relationship between tattoos and fashion?
Tattoos and fashion both serve the same function – they both provide a means for people to not only express themselves but to cover themselves with an armor in which they feel most comfortable. Fashion changes constantly; tattoos, on the other hand, are like your favorite garment that you’ll never throw out, even when the trends change.
Has there been any changes to your design mentality since you started?
When I first started tattooing, my focus was on doing traditional Americana style tattoos – thick outlines, lots of black and bright colors. I was doing pretty much the opposite of what I’ve become known for doing now. Luckily, my mentor is tattoo legend Mark Mahoney, who is one of the pioneers of fine line tattoos. Through him, I learned how to use a single needle and slowly but surely my tattoos developed into the detailed pieces that I’ve become synonymous with today. They’re more subtle than what I started out doing, but I feel like they have just as much impact in terms of aesthetic.
Which piece artwork would you like the public to focus on?
The photograph of my son, Lyon, and I. He and his brother Raif are the greatest pieces of art that I’ve ever produced.
What was the most memorable part of “The Doctor’s Office” pop-up space?
I did a whale shark that I am really proud of. More than any one tattoo, being able to bring my brand and style to Hong Kong in a public setting is important. I’m really big on collaborating – being able to create things that have an influence and, in turn, being influenced by new experiences and people upon my travels. I’m happy and thankful to be across the world and feel such a warm reception for what I love to do.