Conor Moore got his first tattoo as a teenager from a somewhat shady Hell’s Angels tattoo shop in California.
While the experience wasn’t a great introduction to the medium, Moore, who is now the owner of Eastside Electric tattoo parlor in Redmond, found his mentor after he did a cover up on the piece.
Moore, who was originally planning on being a teacher, said he got interested in learning to tattoo, and studied under a mentor as part of a non-traditional apprenticeship.
“If you do what you love, then the money will follow,” he said.
He moved up with his wife from California around nine years ago and eventually started tattooing in Kirkland before opening Eastside Electric 2012.
Instead of going back to school for a masters degree, he took a leap of faith and became a tattoo artist, a decision that seems to have panned out well for him.
“I never thought in a million years I’d be doing what I’m doing,” Moore said.
He’s been tattooing for around 14 years, and decided to bring on a second artist, Tai-Li Lynn.
Lynn is originally from Cleveland, Ohio, and relocated to the Pacific Northwest for the job.
She also has experience and has been inking people for the past six years.
Lynn has roots in neo-traditional, comic-book styles and watercolor but said she’s been branching into other techniques too.
According to her bio, she has been doing art for most of her life and studied graphic design and digital illustration in college.
“The past few years I’ve spent studying more realistic styles,” she said.
Both said they enjoy getting an idea of what the client wants and then building on it to make custom pieces.
“Challenging ourselves artistically is always fun,” Lynn said.
Eastside Electric is the only tattoo parlor in Redmond, and Moore said in the coming years, he hopes to open a second location, with one of them run by Lynn.
He’s eyeing spots either on the Eastside or farther north, but said a second shop in Redmond is unlikely due to the high cost of commercial space.
For now, though, Moore said he’s happy with the location in the city. It’s centrally located for a lot of his clients. When he picked the spot, he said he looked at demographics and realized Redmond would be a great place to set up.
The duo tries to cultivate a welcoming atmosphere and to build trust with the people who walk through their doors.
“Humility is a virtue,” Lynn said. “It’s an honor to be chosen by someone to do a piece of art that’s going to be on them forever.”
The parlor also provides piercing services by appointment and some walk-ins.
Examples of their tattoo work, as well as other artistic endeavors, can be seen at www.redmondtattoo.com.
Eastside Electric is located at 8693 161st Ave. N.E., with prices ranging from $100 to $125 an hour.