”My passion? It is to work, to create. To try to find some kind of satisfaction in the end of this all – but, at the same time, to set my standards higher than yesterday.”
My name is Titta. I was born and raised in a small place called Salla in the Finnish Lapland. When I was young, my closest artistic influencer was my grandad. He was a teacher and loved expressing himself with pen and paper. I was fond of drawing and sketching around as well but didn’t make a big fuzz about it. I truly thought that art could only be a hobby – not someone’s profession. In the far north it was all about real work.
The closest tattoo shop was 130 kilometres away and tattoos were really a rarity in the small Salla. I was a teenager when I saw a tattoo of an eye on my uncle’s shoulder. That stopped me right there. I couldn’t wrap my head around it – it was the coolest thing I’d ever seen! I started to buy tattoo magazines, draw mimicing the tattoo flash and imagine what would it be like to actually tattoo someone. I wanted to become a tattoo artist but I didn’t know how.
I learned very young not to care what people think and that everyone has a chance to do what they dream of – as long as one works hard for it. I have always been keen to try new things and my curiousness took me to see the world after my studies. During my travels my goals and determination became stronger and I found new confidence in me. Instead of making excuses and rejecting new ideas I started to ask myself “Why not?”.
In 2010 after traveling and moving around in Finland and Europe I found my way to Phuket, Thailand. I managed to get a position as a tattoo apprentice in a shop called Climax Tattoo. I travelled around with my mentor tattooing and trying to learn as much as I could. I was very fortunate to be able to tattoo almost every day, and for that I thank all those who took the chance with me. In December of 2011 I moved back to Finland and in the spring 2012 Free Bird Tattoo was born in Tampere.
Along the way, I got to know Mikko Inksanity, a big influencer for my career. In August 2014 I started working at the same place he was, in Precious Tattoo – an amazing tattoo shop owned by Hexa PDC. Everything happened fast and sooner than I realized I was tattooing alongside artists I had looked up for years.
Since February 2015 I have been working in a beautiful two-storey tattoo shop Below Zero Tattoo Gallery in the center of Tampere. We have several highly motivated and professional artists working as well as many talented guest artists visiting us from all around the world.
In 2018 I became a co-owner of Below Zero Tattoo Gallery.
Right now I feel excited about the future. I work at the best shop that I can imagine for me, I travel in Finland and around Europe for conventions and I have inspiring people around me to keep me going with my little projects and events. I am excited to push my art even further and feel lucky to have this kind of life!
Thank you for sharing your time and reading my story.