I am an independent artist, writer, tattooist, philanthropist, member of San Bernardino Masonic Lodge number 178, and a 32nd degree Scottish Rite Freemason.
I have been tattooing professionally since the fall of 1998, and an artist all of my life. In the beginning I was nothing more than a punk ass kid, and started getting into trouble at really young age. The truth is I don’t know why I chose tattooing as a career, it just seemed to happen, a string of cause-and-effects I suppose. All I wanted to do with my life was to make a difference with my artwork. I think the first time I became interested in tattooing I was probably around fourteen years old. I recall seeing a tattoo on this guy when I was in juvenile hall. I remember this tattoo like it was yesterday, and actually I might have been younger than fourteen. This guy had a gigantic black and gray skull with red flames on his rib cage. Upon seeing it I was thinking to myself, ‘That is so awesome, but I know I could do better job than that.’ At that point in my life I told myself, ‘I must learn how to paint in the skin. Tattooing was something I had to do.’ I made up my mind and there was no going back, I was going to become a tattooist. All I wanted to do from that point on was to learn how to tattoo; it was the only thing I thought about. I had to find out how to get the career to land into my lap, and it took much dedication, persistence, and time for it to materialize into reality.
Soon out of juvenile hall I started to get alot of tattoos by many different artists. I figured one way I could learn was by observing. I absorbed any knowledge I could, and was astounded by the complete process. I learned individual techniques and artistry tricks with each tattoo I received. Charlie Roberts did some of my early tattoos and he didn’t know it at time, but he taught me a lot. At the moment I was working for my father doing architecture drawing, conceptual sketches, and painting public murals in my spare time. I went out one afternoon and bought a tattoo magazine because artists I knew were in it. Looking through it I found an advertisement of Dennis Dwyers tattoo machine kits. That planted the seed that would start my career. The minute the money was in hand I had already spent it. With such excitement I ordered a set of machines and tattoo equipment. The anticipation was building up every day waiting for that equipment to arrive. Now with the proper tools all I needed was a teacher, so I started calling my local tattoo shops asking around about an apprenticeship. No one was taking on apprentices at the time unless you had five thousand dollars in hand, and the ability to work for free for over year. I Just spent the last of my money on equipment and was broke. So I ran into a brick wall so to speak. But with a little luck on my side, about a week later I ran into Diamond Dave Rothburg owner of Body & Soul Tattoo, and he asked me to come down to the shop. After talking for a bit, I showed him my sketchbooks and some pictures of murals I have done. He must have liked what he saw, and he took me on as an apprentice soon after. Now at that moment in time I dropped out of school and received my GED. I was working full time with my father (7am-11am) then at the shop (noon-6pm). After work I attended night school at Pasadena Art Institute and soon after that I took classes at Cal Arts. I hardly slept during the duration of that first year. Within time I became a working tattoo artist receiving a small percentage with the 70/30 split as an apprentice in training. I was making just enough money to work at the shop full time so I quit my other jobs and I never looked back.
So I was apprenticed by Diamond Dave Rothburg, out of Body-and-Soul Tattoo in Sherman Oaks, Ca. I tattooed at Body-and-Soul until December of 1999 when I moved to Seattle, WA. I was in a bad place in my life at that time and I had to leave to keep my sanity and it possibly saved my life. So Seattle became my way out, after driving through the night I searched and quickly found a job tattooing at Greenlake and Lynwood tattoo studios. I found myself working there until late April of 2000. Living the tattoo gypsy lifestyle, I enjoyed meeting new people and experiencing new things. I got a two week guest spot at Top Tattoo in Seattle. I had so much fun there working with the crew, and learned more and more every day I was there. The artists were the owners and that made all the difference. They gave me an opportunity to stay on even after the two weeks were up. They rearranged the shop to create a new station that would become my home for the next few months. After listening to the artists telling stories of their travels working around the world, I quickly became mesmerized with the idea of being a traveling artist, and eventually caught the bug. I stayed there working and learning until that overwhelming urge to travel bubbled to the surface. So I went on the road again leaving Top Tattoo sometime in December of 2000, and went on my own self fulfilling journey traveling through parts of Europe including France and England to further my study of the most unique art forms from oil painting to body art. (painting in the skin – tatouage – and as we call it in the west, tattooing.)
Upon returning to the states now sober and thinking clearly, I moved out of Seattle WA. and back down to Los Angeles CA. I was working in a booth at Ink Slingers Ball, a tattoo convention, where I met Kat Von D (Katherine Von Drachenberg) who was the manager at Blue Bird Tattoo in Pasadena CA. After talking for a bit I explained to her that I just moved back down to LA and was looking for shop to work in. She without delay offered me a job and I started working at Blue Bird tattoo studio. I was there until I eventually got fired for using too much MadaCide, a disinfectant, and costing the shop money the owner said. I was just keeping it safe for me and my clients, go figure, ha. So I immediately found a new shop and I started working at Nathan’s studio in good old San Fernando Valley. I tattooed there until I built a large enough clientele and bank roll to open my first shop back in Pasadena CA called SACRED SAINT STUDIO. It’s location just so happened to be in the exact spot of Blue Bird tattoo, they permanently closed it’s doors just months after I was fired.
I owned that studio for about five years and had the time of my life working with my crew. It was sad to let it go and have it end, but I learned and grew so much from it, and nothing last forever. I was now going through some of the hardest times in my life. I lost one of my best friends from a drug over dose and was closing my shop due to money troubles. But I soon learned that only at the time when I may seem to be at my weakest is when I’m at my strongest. After taking a short time off I started over, built a nice small private studio in Glendale to work in, until I had the urge and money to open a street shop once again. So I worked by appointment only in my Glendale Studio for about a year or two, but still didn’t have enough money to get a new shop up and running. So I sold my house, cars, and mortgaged everything left. I sold most of my possessions, got to love eBay, and was able to buy my new building in East LA that was Sacred Saint Skin And Art Gallery Los Angeles CA. At the time it seemed like a good idea and it worked out for little bit. My savings were quickly deplenished and the studio was not making enough money to pay the mortgage plus bills. I found myself in the same situation as before, making the same mistakes. Eventually having to sell the building and closed the studio, again due to financial reasons. This artistic profession is not like it once was, now with a shop on every corner undercutting each other like we are competing for the same skin. This craft is now surrounded by an industry feeding off of the artists and in some cases making it difficult for the artist to make a decent living… I ultimately went back on the road realizing at that moment that the times past would never be the same. I eventually found myself in San Bernardino California now working out of my private studio by appointment only. I like it that way better, no distractions. My journey was not an easy one, I came across many dead ends and have experienced much hardship, but then again nothing worth doing is easy. The fact is tattooing saved my life, at least for the time being. The reality that I can make a living by doing something I really enjoy like creating art is a privilege, and I will never again take it for granted. In the skin or on the canvas I enjoy creating unique pieces of art, and with your help we will tattoo the world with art.
I would like to thank English Craig who has been kind enough to give me so much useful information and support during my apprenticeship, Also Charlie Roberts for giving me my fist real tattoo. I learned so many helpful hints and tips along the way from every artist I have worked beside. I would also like to thank my father, he has always been supportive, and ever since I could pick up a pencil he has been there to guide me.
The largest influence to me and my artwork is my clients. They are the ones that make it all happen, they come to me with the ideas and I just do my thing. There would be no pushing ink with out the skin. Another influence of my tattooing/art, is seeing other artists pushing the limits. It drives me to go bigger, brighter and cleaner in my artwork, drive right past the ledge ,and start to fly so to speak. I love to see my art evolve and progress before my eyes. I think the things I enjoy most about tattooing, besides the fact that I love art, is the permanence of the artwork, the commitment one must make. I love the feeling of selling my artwork to people who like it. I also enjoy all the different people I meet from every aspect of life. My favorite tattoos are big, bold, colorful, and a little bit rugged in some way. As far as my tattooing career is concerned, it is important to me that I never stop learning…
If anyone has any questions relating to the tattoo profession or would like to make an appointment or consultation, you can contact me through email. As of Jan. 2011 I closed my shop in Los Angeles California, and have my new home base in San Bernardino CA. Most of my clients consist of referrals, and with the shop far away from downtown Los Angeles I do not get walk-ins and nor do i allow them. A majority of my clients are referred by other people in the art world or existing clients of mine. The shop is a very pleasant and private environment where anyone that comes in can feel comfortable and relaxed. I offer the highest quality of standards in cleanliness and in the art of tattooing. Email me to talk about your future tattoo. — I work by appointment only. — New clients must email me to set up some time to make a consultation before I will book an appointment. I recommend that you set up your consultation a week or two ahead because my calendar books up fast. Sometimes a month ahead just for consultations and months ahead for appointments, but I always try to keep some days open for my existing clients (to keep the large works going).
The importance of understanding cross contamination in the tattoo industry is one of my highest concerns: I offer the highest quality of standards in cleanliness, cross contamination, and blood-borne pathogens in the tattoo industry. I give a lot of the props to all the guys and girls at Top Tattoo in Seattle WA. They taught me the importance of education in cleanliness and blood-borne pathogens, its not all just about art. So I owe a big thanks to them, AL D (god rest his soul) and Sky Renfro. They showed me the Light.
Certification: I am certified in Blood borne Pathogens and renew my certification every year to keep it fresh in my mind. which is a valuable asset in allowing clients to make well-informed decisions regarding a tattoo.
Alliance of Professional Tattooists— I have been a member of the Alliance of Professional Tattooists since 1998.
Three legged dogs
International midget polo team
Building shit (using tools)
-Birth date: 4/16/1979
Anything with cow ass and lard.
Anything that should, would, and will kill you, or at least make your
life a living hell. JUNK FOOD-FAST FOOD
My Family… My wife, daughter, father, brother, & two sisters
Philanthropy, Philosophy, Nature, Art and Science.
*You will get nothing short of Top quality, Clean, Safe, Artistic
Tattooing by internationally recognized artist Brandon Notch (aka) Sacred Saint.
*The Art Of Tattooing: The art of tattooing is in the ability to learn how to transfer one’s idea from their mind to paper. Then to create a permanent piece of artwork in one’s skin. Most of the time a client will be thinking about red but he’ll say blue, so you have to predict that. Ultimately keep in mind the flow of the art on the body. You can have a badass top-notch tattoo but if it has no flow or does not fit the body, ultimately it will not look good.
*SACRED SAINT TATTOO STUDIO*
*No children under 18 allowed in the studio – NO EXCEPTIONS!!!!
*You must be 18 years old with a valid state issued photo ID to be tattooed.
*NO smoking, drugs, or alcohol allowed in the studio. Anyone noticeably under the influence will be be removed.
*Cash or Paypal ONLY – “No Checks”
*Appointments ONLY !!! If you can’t make your appointment, call or email and I’ll reschedule. 323-614-6768
*CANCELLATIONS WITHOUT NOTICE WILL FORFEIT YOUR DEPOSIT. Don’t show, don’t call and you’re at the back of the line also forfeiting your deposit.
*Only one guest per client may be present during a tattoo.
*All work is at the sole discretion of the artist. THIS IS AN ART STUDIO AND I MAKE ART
*I reserve the right to refuse service to anyone for any reason.
*I DO NOT sell tattoo ink, equipment, or piercing needles to the
general public. PLEASE DON’T ASK.
*** I Work By APPOINTMENT ONLY..
***Now Working in San Bernardino CA. And for the convenience of my out of state clients Email me for hotel info…
are known around the world as, tatoeage, tatouage, tätowier, tatuaggio, tatuar, tatuaje, tatuagens, tatoveringer, tato, tattueringar, tatoos, and tatu
1. Full Name: Brandon Garic Notch
2. Nickname: Sacred Saint
3. Where are you originally from: Saint Paul Minnesota
4. Where do you live and work now: I currently live in San Bernardino. I have a private studio in San Bernardino Ca and work in LA by Appointment only.
5. Name of shop where you work: Sacred Saint Studio
6. Are you the owner of the shop: Yes
— “How long have you tattooing?” I have been pushing these pins since 1996 but professionally since 1998. PINS TO THE SKIN!! I learn something new every day, just trying to get good..
— “How did you get into tattooing?” I was in juvenile hall when I first, really got interested in tattooing. I was a young kid lost in the world trying to find my place. You know getting into trouble. Haha. I bought some equipment machines etc. and started scratching on my friends then got new friends. Haha .Yes we all start out as scratcher’s it takes a lot of bad tattoos to get good. So you tattoo for free doing anything and everything that comes your way to lean and progress as a tattooist. I lied about my age went around to some shops and got an apprenticeship and never looked back. All I know is after that, all I did was anything that had to do with tattooing. I talk about it in my book. (Sacred Saint American Dreamer)
— “When did you get into painting?” I’ve been into art, painting and drawing my whole life. My parents are painters-artist’s.
— “Was your family and friends supportive in your decision to become a tattoo artist?” Yes, everyone was very supportive.
— “Do you like to challenging yourself every time you tattoo?” Yes, I love creating bigger and better tattoos.
— “What do you like about tattooing?” I love to create art. The POWER of ART holds true. Creating hope, faith, motivation, change and inspiration in ones life. Artwork is changing lives and motivating the world around us. ART is life.. Let’s tattoo the world with art.
— “Do you ever do charity work? Work cheap for the right cause/Donate paintings, Etc.?” YES HAHAHA… I am an artist but this does not mean i will work for FREE. I have bills just like you.
— “Do you have a favorite tattoo?” I don’t have a favorite tattoo. But I love things that challenge me and People that give me large parts of their body to tattoo. I have yet to do my best tattoo only my best so far.
— “Do you ever do a tattoo twice?” I don’t like to do the same tattoo twice. It’s not fair for my clients that pay for a custom tattoo. I will always make it new and different then the last and i always try to make it better looking. (Nothing is the same.)
— “Who or what is your biggest influence in your tattoo work and why?” My clients aren’t the biggest influences in my work they give me the skin and inspiration to create. Something’s you just can’t do with paint on canvas. They really are the biggest influence in my work.
— “If I had to name my greatest motivation in life thus far, what would it be?” DEATH (Being happy with what i have done in life and having fun in life.)
— “What was the most difficult thing to learn in tattooing for you and why?” Most difficult thing for me to learn in tattooing would have to be learning how to transfer one’s idea from their mind to paper, to create a permanent piece of artwork in one’s skin. Most of the time a client will be thinking about red but he’ll say blue, so you have to predict that. Ultimately keep in mind the flow of the art on the body. You can have a badass top-notch tattoo but if it has no flow or does not fit the body ultimately it will look like shit.
— “How do you usually advertise or market yourself?” Advertising is one thing I don’t believe in. I believe that good work speaks for itself all my clients are referral-based. If your work speaks for itself, don’t interrupt it…
— “What brand of inks do you recommend or use and why?” I can’t recommend any brands of the inks, because I use a lot of different inks there’s no one brand that’s better than the other. It all depends upon what you like. Most of my colors I make, like red I’ve been making inks for about eight years now. Some brand’s have a good color but the rest suck or are hard to work into the skin. It took me many years to find the colors I like, But if you’re talking about ink. When I say ink, I mean black because that is the only ink we use, all the colors are pigments. I still like talons white label.
— “What is the best brand of tattoo machines that you recommend and why?” I can’t recommend a brand of tattoo machines. I can only tell you there are two types, daily drivers and hotrods. On a long day you want something that feels good in your hand doesn’t weight too much and will not overheat. So ultimately you would need to find a machine that feels good in your own hands.
— “What do you believe is the most important tattooing skill one should learn how to master and why?” Or would you believe the most important check to still much to learn that one’s easy lying down a good clean tattoo. There really is no one skill you either can tattoo or you can’t.
— “What is your best advice or tips to someone new to the art of tattooing?” The best advice I could give to someone new to the art of tattooing would be look at it like buying a car. Shop for quality and style not price! A tattoo is the only thing you can buy that no one can take from you. Don’t get Cheap on the only thing that will outlive you. Cold, yes I know, but I’m really tired of fixing and covering up shady tattoos. If you do it right the first time it will be cheaper in the long run, Also if you need to get the tattoo right away you probably should not get it at all. Be patient and put some thought into it, and do it right.
— “What is the best way to practice for those just starting out?” Practice on your friends and then get new friends, just kidding. You need to learn on your Self to get the feel of it. The depth, speed and the ability you give the needle. You need to get use to the minimal visibility you have of the needle because of puddling ink. You have to love it.
— “What is the best way for one to land an apprenticeship?” The best way for one to land an apprenticeship would be to get tattooed, find a good shop and get tattooed by an artist you like, that’s the start. Become a hang around, help out and show your determination, eventually they will ask you. Then make sure they see your determination and heart, everything else can be taught.
— “What do you call the art of tattooing?”
The Art Of Tattooing: The art of tattooing is in the ability to learn how to transfer one’s idea from their mind to paper. Then to create a permanent piece of artwork in one’s skin. Most of the time a client will be thinking about red but he’ll say blue, so you have to predict that. Ultimately keep in mind the flow of the art on the body. You can have a badass top-notch tattoo but if it has no flow or does not fit the body, ultimately it will not look good.
–“Do you ever get frustrated sometimes when things just dont work? When making your art/painting or tattooing?” Hahaha, If you get upset when the toast burns, what are you going to do when your house burns down?
–“Do you have any advice for your fellow artist struggling to stay afloat?” Ya, Never be bullied into silence. Never allow yourself to be made a victim. Accept no one’s definition of your life; define yourself. Why try to be someone you’re not? Life is hard enough without adding impersonation to the skills required. If tattooing is you then DO IT!! 😉
—” How would you describe your personality?” An outgoing straight forward comedic personality. I work hard party hard.