Heather Stagg is the co-owner of Black Tide, usually accompanied by her adorable sausage dog Izzy. Heather is based in Stafford in the West Midlands in a horror-themed studio, where she enjoys to tattoo bold colourful pieces, especially horror. In the 6 years she’s been tattooing she’s created a large portfolio of statement pieces.

Hi Heather, thanks for agreeing to let me interview you, tell us about yourself.

I’m Heather, I’ve been a tattooist and body piercer for about 5 or 6 years now. Around 3 years ago myself and a friend decided to open up our own studio which is now Black Tide in Stafford.

How did you get into tattooing? 

At the time, I was getting tattooed a lot, in and out of studios and getting to know different artists but I never really thought that tattooing was something I would ever be able to get into, but eventually I decided to ask a studio that had just opened if they were willing to take on an apprentice and I just landed really lucky.

What is your all-time favourite tattoo that you’ve done? 

That’s a tough one, there are so many tattoos I’ve loved doing but I think up in the top of my favourites there would definitely have to be my horror tattoos. I’m a massive horror fan so anytime someone asks it’s always really fun for me.

If you could pick any artist in the whole world to tattoo you, who would you pick? 

Again there’s so many! But I think definitely would have to say TinyMissBecca (s6girl) she does the most wonderful animal design. I’d love to eventually get a piece from her.

How many tattoos do you have (if you can count them all)

I’m not even sure I know anymore! There’s some I even forget that are there but I’d say 30+ tattoos.

Weirdest tattoo you’ve been asked to do? 

There have definitely been a few odd requests over the years, usually when someone wants a more intimate area tattooed.

What advice would you give to someone who wants to get into tattooing? 

Probably to draw. Sounds obvious but a lot of people looking for apprenticeships turn up with just one or two pieces of very similar work or nothing at all. Actually, take the time to build up a decent portfolio and include a range of designs and different mediums, it’s the first thing your potential employer is going to see.

Favourite tattoo artists? 

Always so many amazing artists out there but I’m gonna go with a few more local tattooists.

Nathan Beardmore (blackwidow1984) who is based at Black Tide, Stafford.

Michael Jones (MikulB)

Chris Greenhough (mrgreen_tattoo)

Micky Latham (micky_j_latham_tattooist)

Thanks for taking the time to speak to us Heather and if any other budding tattoo artists fancy being interviewed for the page, feel free to get in touch!