Russell Bishop – Owner
I became interested in tattoos at the end of WW II when my uncles came home from the war with tattoos of Hula dancers on their arms and ships on their chests. When I went to school I would draw on my arms and the teachers would scold me for doing so. Around the age of 13 or so my brother came home from the Navy with tattoos. He said that if I would take a sewing needle and wrap it with thread and dip it in India ink and then poke it in my skin that it would make a tattoo. Viola!!! I began tattooing my friends.
In the “60’s” after I came home from the military I met a couple of bikers that were tattooing, after a bottle of whiskey they agreed to teach me to build my own tattoo machine and to learn tattooing. So after college and after several years in sales and owning my own marketing company I became disillusioned by it all, we had a cabin cruiser on Table Rock Lake and one day I met a young man covered in tattoos. We talked about his tattoos. He informed me that there was a tattoo convention in Kansas City and that I ought to attend, so I did. I was amazed and knew then what I wanted to do with the rest of my life. So in 1993 after a couple of years on the road tattooing, my wife and I started Skin Illustrations in Overland Park, Ks. And then a couple of years latter in Lawrence and then in Marathon, FL., Topeka, KS. and Chandler Arizona. As time went on the desire to retire was more important than all the studios so we closed all but the studios in O.P. and Lawrence.
We now have Skin Illustrations in O.P. and Lawrence, KS. In Lawrence we also have Hairdoos in the tattoo studio. My wife Jan is a licensed cosmetologist as well as a licensed body piercer. She is one of the best piercers in the industry. So that’s my story and I’m stick’n to it.
Always making sure the public is greeted with a friendly face and attitude, customer service and fair price has been my primary concern. 17 years of body piercing, excelled into Permanent Make-Up in 2000, then added to my professions the title of Cosmetologist in 2010.
Sean was born in Norfolk Virginia in 1983. After a few years of active duty in the navy his father moved the family to central Kansas where his mother worked in an art gallery while his father practiced law. Drawing was often a source of entertainment in the small Kansas town where entertainment was sparse. After high school Sean attended gun-smithing school where he found that he enjoyed checkering and engraving more than the mechanics of the profession and began to focus more on art and design. After returning to his home town for a short time he decided central Kansas was not for him and moved to Lawrence KS. Once in Lawrence he began to develop the process for his torch burnings as well as his tattooing and after a few years was able to draw the attention of a few galleries in Chicago as well as California and Colorado. Apart from gallery shows Sean also works as a tattoo artist for Skin Illustrations in Lawrence KS and enjoys both mediums equally although his approach to both are quite different from each other.
Kaity – Hair Stylist
Grew up in Wellsville, Kansas, I guess you could say I started doing hair in my early high school years. My older brother would have me change his hair color almost every three weeks. Then that led to me dabbling with color in my own hair, having hot pink hair for choir concerts and marching band made me stand out. But it wasn’t until almost two years after high school, which I didn’t go off to college, that my best friend had a good idea that we go to cosmetology school together. As it turned out, it became second nature to me. I love doing interesting techniques for hair color to get different results and to make it your own instead of like everyone else. But what I personally take pride in, is my hair cutting skills.
I graduated hair school in 2008 and joined the industry in 2009, with Supercuts. I worked there for a year and a half, and doing almost 200 haircuts in two weeks time, all of them “to the T”. If you want a certain style, I’m your gal. And now that I’ve been in the industry for almost four years, I look forward to expanding my knowledge with everything Skin Illustrations is willing to teach me!
Overland Park, Kansas
Lance has been tattooing since 1987 around the Great Plains region. Hailing from far western Kansas, he began tattooing friends and family in his teenage years, progressing to work on the general public by 1990. After graduating from K State in 1994, Lance began his professional career in tattooing and body piercing. Among the first licensed practitioners in Kansas, Lance worked with the Skin Illustrations crew from 1995 to 2002. Lance remained active in the tattoo and piercing community in Lawrence, and has since returned to Skin Illustrations. You can find Lance working at the Overland Park location and continues to provide top notch customer service. If you want detail, if you like horror, sci-fi or comic book imagery, if you want fantasy art, come down and talk to Lance.
I started tattooing as Skin Illustrations back in 1999. Since then I’ve been giving clients the best quality artwork I can portray. Aside from just the shop, I have worked many conventions alongside with great artists, and even the Sturgis Rally. I don’t have myself “stuck” into any one particular style, as I prefer to excel at all styles. I can be found from Noon to Eight O’Clock, Tuesday thru Saturday at our Overland Park location, “so come on in and see me”!!
Junction City, Kansas
I have been tattooing professionally for 13 years. My first apprenticeship began at the tender age of 19 at a shop in San Antonio, TX called Absolute Tattoo with a gentleman by the name of Jason Haney. After working with him for a few years I decided to move on, to another shop. At South Paw Tattoo, also in San Antonio TX, I studied with several other very well respected artists. Most of the guys at South Paw followed more traditional styles of tattooing and an appreciation for the art of tattooing, which they kindly passed down to me. I enjoy the artistry of tattooing and respect it as an art form.