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Longview hosting first-ever ArkLaTex Tattoo and Art Expo

Published: Jul. 23, 2021 at 2:15 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 23, 2021 at 7:04 PM CDT
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LONGVIEW, Texas (KLTV) - Once upon a time few people had them, but they now adorn people from all walks of life: tattoos. And this weekend they will be celebrated at the Ark-La-Tex Tattoo and Art Expo in Longview.

There have been several tattoo expos at Maude Cobb, but the previous promoters took their show elsewhere. Sam Roach of Longview decided the show must go on.

Sam owns Vanish Aesthetics and Inside Out Tattoo on a regular day, but this crazy day, at least for him, he runs the expo in Longview.

“I’ll be right back,” Sam said.

He is difficult to keep up with, so let’s talk to Chase Alexander. He runs Tattoo Booking which features numerous tattoo artists and work samples.

“You’re able to find the style that you want, sort through a bunch of different tattoo artists, and then get linked directly to their Instagram and book however the artists is looking to be booked,” Alexander said.

Many artists are already set up, like Chris Good. He hails from Salt Lake City and, like Sam, is Wicked Fast, or at least that’s the name of his company.

“I do color realism and black and gray realism. So anything realistic, that’s what I specialize in. I really like to focus in and hone in on all the details and just bring it to life because the details are in the picture, baby,” Good said.

Oh, there’s Sam again, but now he’s dealing with staff. Well maybe there’s another artist around the corner. And yes, Joel Wright, from Texarkana, was a painter first, then got into tattoos.

“I enjoy both so I dedicated myself to doing that. Now it does make the setup quite challenging because I not only have to remember the tattoo supplies, but I also have to remember the paintings and setting all that up. So it becomes kind of complex,” Wright said.

And suddenly Sam has an announcement to make.

“We’d like to thank everyone for being here; all of our artists and visitors. The show is now open,” Sam said into a microphone.

And he was gone again. But the show had begun, so I asked him a quick question: Why so busy?

“Every single vendor here, or artist, I talked to personally. I have a relationship with them now, and so, if you want things done right, do it yourself,” Sam said.

Well, that explains a lot, actually: one man promotion team. And the inking has begun.

To some skin is more than flesh, it’s a canvas just waiting for artwork, and there’s going to be a lot of pain-ting going on this weekend in Longview.

The Ark-La-Tex Tattoo and Art Expo kicked off at noon and goes to 11pm. Saturday it’s noon to 11 and Sunday noon to 9. It’s $20 for a day pass and $40 for the weekend. Kids under 12 are free.

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