Name and blog name: John O'Hagan -The Golden Rule Tattoo and PhxJohn on Instagram...Closest thing I have to a blog haha.
editor's note: fun fact- John was actually the person who took me to get my first tattoo almost ten years ago! I have him to thank for "showing me the ropes," and giving great advice that resulted in me taking my time and choosing really wonderful artists. It's pretty neat to feature him here after all of these years!
Age: 29 (ugh, when did that happen?)
Occupation: Historic and Mid Century Modern Home Specialist - Twins And Company Realty: A boutique real estate brokerage.
Co-Owner - Maxwell and O'Hagan Group: We buy historic/MCM houses, and renovate them in a period appropriate style.
Co-Owner - Golden Rule Tattoo: Customer service focused tattoo shop in Downtown Phoenix AZ.
Age of first tattoo: 18
Favorite tattoo: My arms probably. I loved the look of full sleeves when I was a kid. A lot less people were tattooed back then and when I saw someone with full sleeves it was really visually impacting for me. I always wanted that look.
Artist/shop/location of featured tattoo: Severed Geisha head and snake on my left thigh. Chris Lain - Pinnacle Tattoo- Corpus Christi, TX
1) Tell us about your featured tattoo.
I was in a band in the early 2000's and we were on tour and had a date in Corpus Christi. There was a shop next to the venue we were playing so we went over to check it out. Honestly most of the time on tour you are just killing time. I saw Chris' book and was blown away. I had never heard of him before, and I'm pretty into the style of tattooing he does. I chatted with him for a while and he was super nice. I won't get tattooed by pretentious tattoo dorks no matter how good they are. I want the experience to be solid all around. Anyways, I wanted to get something quick by him but he was setting up for an appointment and couldn't squeeze me in.
I kept trying to book another trip out that way to get in with him, but life kept getting in the way. A few years later, while I was at Immaculate Tattoo getting tattooed by Coleman he said there was a guest artist coming through in a couple months whose style I would love, and it was Chris! So we started this piece on my thigh and after a couple more visits finished it up.
2) Do you have any other tattoos? If so, what do you have and where?
I have full sleeves done by Aaron Coleman. My leg from the knee down was done by Jason K that used to work at Immaculate as well. I've been tattooed by a bunch of different people randomly here and there. Aaron is working on my torso/bodysuit right now, slowly... haha.
3) Do you plan on getting more?
Yep. I'd like to be fully covered wrist to ankle, I'm on my way I suppose. I'm considering my hands when the timing is appropriate career-wise . But since I'm built stocky, I probably won't tattoo my neck ever.
4) How do your family and friends feel about your tattoo(s)?
My Mom used to cry when I'd come home with a new tattoo. Now she thinks they are pretty. My Dad was always cool about it. They both just wanted to make sure I didn't get dumb tattoos that would prevent or limit me from future career choices. That was smart of them to consider, and thankfully I listened to them. In my daily career of dealing with buyers and sellers in real estate, it's nice to be able to cover up and not have to deal with reactions to my tattoos.
Have you run into any adversity or negativity because of them?
Sure. I get glared at in public sometimes, or ignored by staff at high end stores. Especially when shopping for high end fixtures for properties I'm flipping for some reason? As if I having tattoos means I don't have the money to buy nice door hardware or shower fixtures haha. But once they realize I know what I'm talking about and that my tattoos are really nice, not jailhouse garbage they relax and treat me well.
In general I try and stay covered up in public just to avoid questions and being hassled when I'm on task.
When I was a bartender it was a constant source of annoyance for me. People trying to talk to me about them, ask me how much I payed for them, telling me they don't like them or calling me "tat guy" to try and get my attention when the bar was busy.
I've been into Yoga for a couple years, and I get a lot of weird looks when I go into a new class or new school. the mat space next to me is always the last one to get filled. I've been called out by instructors in front of the class before too, on some " why would you do that to your body" type stuff. It seems to be one of the most conservative spaces for acceptance of heavily tattooed people that I've run into. Seems strange since of all the open minded hippy bullshit they spew while I'm just trying to get more flexible.
John's pet piggy, Emma! See her tribute tattoo above. :)
Do you have a significant other? Does he/she have tattoos?
My ex wife was heavily tattooed, but wasn't when we started dating.
I've dated really heavily tattooed girls, and more recently more girls that have either no tattoos or like one small one.
I don't have a preference honestly. I like good tattoos, but bad tattoos are a turn off for me. No tattoos is fine by me. I'm not into the social side of the tattoo industry, I just simply like the aesthetic.
5) What's the most interesting experience you've ever had in regards to your tattoos?
I mostly remember confrontations. Most of my tattooing experiences have been really pretty typical.
People touching me really doesn't work well for them. Other than that, I am fine with people staring. I don't mind a couple questions but I don't like getting sucked into weird conversations with strangers for any reason, especially not tattoo related.
6) Any advice for those interested in getting tattooed but haven't gotten one yet?
Do your research. When I was trying to figure out who I wanted to tattoo when I was younger I read an article in a tattoo magazine and it was an interview by Chris Trevino and in it he said " Everyone gets the tattoo they deserve" and that always stuck with me. If you just walk into a random shop and get a bad tattoo, it's your bad. If you do your research and find an artist you like and are comfortable with, then you'll have a great experience. Either way, it's your experience to own and you get to/have to live with the consequences.