Deanna Smith from Dentonite, 24 was more impressive than any of the most talented tattoo artists around the country this season. Ink Master.
Smith has only a few months left to complete four years as a professional tattoo artist. But she managed to make it into the top five of all 30 contestants. She was eliminated with two episodes left on her portrait tattoo. Although she did not win the contest, it was a good time. Ink Master Her life and work have been transformed.
Now that she’s no longer restricted by the television network’s nondisclosure agreement, save for announcing the winner, she’s allowed to speak about her time as a contestant.
“I was there for about two months,” she says. There were two remaining episodes. [after I was eliminated], so a full two months is the extent of how long you’re there if you make it that far.”
There is life beyond the competitions Ink Master Smith does not record it, however, he describes the existence of a dorm-like communal college.
“We were kind of sardined together,” she says. “It’s really cool because we were all in one loft and we all actually hung out. People did what they wanted or just stayed in their bedrooms. But for the most part, me and other contestants would stay up until 3 a.m. sometimes, drawing, drinking, and it was so much fun.”
Ink Master The contestants must overcome many obstacles and work closely with the judges.
“I’m not used to having my tattoos looked at under a microscope,” Smith says. “It’s a competition show, so you have to put that pressure on the artists for everything to be perfect. But I don’t fully agree that what makes a tattoo perfect is how straight the line work is, or how solid the saturation is. I think it’s about when you see a tattoo, does it look dope? If the answer is yes, then it’s a good tattoo.”
Smith did not bristle or argue about her abilities during her time on the program. She admits that there were advantages and disadvantages to this decision.
“I definitely wanted to stay true to what I believe in,” she says. “I’m not one to boast about myself and say I’m the best. I honestly didn’t want to fight with anyone. I wanted my work to speak for itself. I did that, but then I was automatically a target.”
Smith believes that maintaining a low profile, while still being able to show quality work, led her to receive more difficult canvasses. However, she’s happy with how she was portrayed on the show and satisfied with her decision to stay clear of any reality show drama.
If you’re not well-versed in tattoo artistry, watching Ink Master This course will provide a foundation in technique and style. There’s a noticeable divide among veteran tattoo artists and their xennial/millennial counterparts, specifically as it pertains to traditional American tattoos versus realism. Smith says earlier realism techniques weren’t as refined as they are today, which creates a lingering stigma about the style. The main claim some people make against realism-style tattoos is that the quality doesn’t hold up over time.
“[Veteran artists] don’t like realism as much,” Smith explains. “People didn’t really know how to do it back then. If I were to do a color realistic rose, I don’t believe that if I were to put a black outline around the outside that everything on the inside would hold up longer. I think that’s bullshit; it doesn’t make any sense. I have a color realistic piece on my leg that was done six years ago, and it looks like it was done yesterday.”
Smith likens being on the TV show to an athlete’s training camp and claims it helped to improve her performance.
“I’m not one to boast about myself and say I’m the best. I honestly didn’t want to fight with anyone. I wanted my work to speak for itself. I did that, but then I was automatically a target.” – Deanna Smith
“I’m more efficient now, and my quality has improved, along with my speed,” she says. “It’s almost like when people who want to run fast train in sand, and then when they get on concrete, it’s a lot easier. I feel like that’s what happened for me. I was under so much pressure and stress to perform well, and now that I’m in an easier environment, it’s a breeze.”
Smith will keep racking up frequent flyer miles due to the increased exposure. Smith has made numerous appearances at conventions around the country. She was on her way to North Carolina at the time she spoke. Ink Master finale show. After that, it’s on to Columbus, Ohio; New York City; and Phoenix.
“Hopefully it slows down a little bit after that,” she says laughing.
Doing well Ink Master Smith has gained notoriety that compliments her talent. She’s in a position in which she has the freedom to ply her craft when and where she wants, a luxury most people are not able to accomplish in their careers.
“My ultimate goal [when I became a professional artist] “I wanted to be able travel anywhere I liked and to book in every city,” she said. “I’ve finally reached that. I’m in the process of trying to figure out what I want to do next. I’m deciding whether or not I want to open my own shop, but I’m not getting deep in that process at this time.
Right now I want to just enjoy the freedom that comes from not owning my shop. I’m just riding this wave, living life and enjoying the fact that I’m able to travel wherever and make a living doing what I love.”
The Ink Master finale will air on Tuesday, September 9th at 9:00 p.m. ET on Paramount Network.