Tery Do is a French tattoo artist living and working between France and Vietnam. In the past few years, I met him at several tattoo conventions, where, over time, I had the chance to admire and learn more about his unique tattoo style. He belongs to the really first generation of professional tattoo artists in Vietnam, and I was very pleased to welcome Tery into the World Tattoo Events ProTeam early this year. 

Tery Do • Biomechanical Tattoos With a Touch of Realism 13 May 2019

For readers who do not know you, can you give us a brief overview of yourself?

I’ve been drawing since I was very young, and I started tattooing in 2009 in Blagnac (France), where I opened my first shop. I am currently based in Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnam), where I opened my tattoo parlor in 2011 in the backpacker district.

Since then, I have also been training many young tattoo apprentices to initiate them into the art of tattooing and hygiene procedures following French standards, thus improving the professional level in Vietnam.

My favorite field is the realistic Asian style with a biomechanical twist. I work mostly in black and gray, but sometimes also in color. I also work a lot “freehand.”.

Tery Do • Biomechanical Tattoos With a Touch of Realism 13 May 2019

How did you learn to tattoo?

Well, I learned the basics of tattooing on YouTube. After a while, I bought a traditional coil machine to practice on volunteers’ skin. It didn’t take long before I opened my first tattoo parlor back in 2009.

What is your definition of art?

My definition of art is the goal of expressing something in a form that we can see, which is more or less concrete. We can translate illusions, ideas, thoughts, etc. through the art of drawing, engraving, or any other form of realization. We create a work from thought, and we make it real with support.

Tery Do • Biomechanical Tattoos With a Touch of Realism 13 May 2019

How would you define your tattoo style?

My style is Japanese Asian, with a touch of realism and biomechanics, which I adore to tattoo directly on skin. I like to create pieces in my style and give life to everything. Working on contrast and light, I added more volume and depth.

What kind of approach do you have with your clients?

I am rather open to all proposals. I like to keep a very easy approach and I’m always listening to my customers.

What kind of tattoos or projects do you really like to do at conventions?

I like to make tattoos without tracing or drawing, like Biomechanical, because it gives me a very particular adrenaline in a mundane environment.

Tery Do • Biomechanical Tattoos With a Touch of Realism 13 May 2019

Do you think you make better tattoos at the studio or at a tattoo convention?

I think that in a convention, the conditions make it more difficult to make a really perfect piece. Conventions are often very noisy, with a large number of people passing by, talking, watching, and taking pictures. So yes, there is somehow a lack of comfort, and above all, we are not in our regular working environment. So it’s definitely tougher to tattoo at conventions, but I always stay very focused and do my very best to achieve the best possible results.

Do you remember the first tattoo convention you worked at?

Yes, my first convention was in Toulouse. I felt very small!

Is there a country or region of the world that you prefer when you attend conventions?

Not really. But more conventions allow us to discover more cities and new countries.

Tery Do • Biomechanical Tattoos With a Touch of Realism 13 May 2019

Did you win any contest prizes so far?

Yes, I won a few prizes:

  • I won the best of the day at the convention in Saigon in 2014, first in big pieces of black and gray.
  • 2nd place big black and gray Asian piece in 2016 at the convention in Saigon.
  • 1st place a big piece black and gray at Salon de tatouage du Revest-les-Eaux in France.

Which prize are you most proud of?

I am most proud to have won first place in black and gray at the Saigon Tattoo Convention in 2014. I realized a leg in Biomechanics on-site without design and without tracing.

What has been your favorite tattoo convention so far? And why?

The convention I like the most is in Aix en Provence: “Cezanne Tattoo Ink
It is a very beautiful and big convention (more than 300 artists together) with many great tattoo artists from around the world. I always have beautiful encounters during this event. The organizer is also a friend and this puts us at ease every time. Furthermore, the convention is very well organized and really takes into account the needs of the exhibitors and artists.

Tery Do • Biomechanical Tattoos With a Touch of Realism 13 May 2019

What is your main reason for attending a tattoo convention?

My main reason for participating at conventions is to meet with customers, and we can develop an interesting piece to then present at the event contest and to the public. When making this project at the event, I tried to keep the price reasonable but not free as we faced a significant amount of expenses as well (flights, hotels, travel days, etc.).

How many tattoo conventions do you visit each year?

On average, I do 2 or 3 conventions in Asia and 2 conventions in Europe.

What’s the most interesting trend between Asian and European conventions?

Well, there are a couple of big differences between Europe and Asia. In Asia, we like contests, which are often the main subject of a convention. So we see a lot of tattoo artists tattooing for free on a model just to present their piece.

In Europe, it’s different; we tattoo to work and earn money. The contest is a side activity. Also in Europe, people are used to being tattooed by a foreign artist. This is not really the case in Asia yet, although it is beginning to come as well.

What do you think of competitions?

The competitions are essential at a convention because they give motivation to the young tattoo artists to be recognized for their talent and to be noticed by the sponsor or magazine. They are a very effective means of boosting the artist’s reputation. Sometimes there are also good prizes for the winners. It motivates tattooers to do like their idols: persevere to be noticed in the big yard!

Tery Do • Biomechanical Tattoos With a Touch of Realism 13 May 2019

In terms of event organization, what is the most important aspect for you?

For me, the most important thing at a convention is to properly supervise the arriving artists to settle and meet all their professional needs as far as possible. As a little extra, a meal or drink the day before the opening of the convention would be nice as well. So that all the exhibitors can meet and get to know each other in a relaxed mood. During and after the convention, it is otherwise mostly impossible to do so.

What is the best way to book a convention?

Just send me an email or message on Facebook Messenger and explain your project with an image, the location, and the approximate size so that I can make a price estimate. After validation and deposit payment, I will proceed to the creation of the design. Then we agree on the design, and it remains only to wait for the special day.

Do you usually prefer to schedule an appointment before the convention, or are you open to working on site?

Not necessarily; I do not work much via email or Messenger; sometimes, without even meeting my client, we agree by email; then, when the convention is passed, an act; if there are things to change, I would at the moment; I am above all a draftsman!

Who are the people you admire most in this industry?

Usually, I admire the most people on the contest jury. Most of the time, it’s so hard to decide which tattoo artist will be ranked first.

Which celebrity would you really like to tattoo? And what would you do?

I never thought about it, celebrity or not; for me, everyone is the same. I care mostly about pleasing my customers, and I never tattoo what I want but always according to their wishes. I really try to avoid the situation where one day one of my tattoos is covered in regret!

What do you think of tattoo seminars?

The seminars are a very good event to share the know-how, style, technique, and vision of things in the artistic tattoo and they help enormously young tattoo artists to evolve, understand, and improve.

Tery Do • Biomechanical Tattoos With a Touch of Realism 13 May 2019

How do you see the tattoo world today and what do you think of the future?

The tattoo world has evolved very quickly from innovation to equipment, disposables, and ink, so the new and young tattoo artist is taking advantage of new technology to perfect his art. This is something we did not have 15 or 20 years ago (needle cartridge, rotating machine, vegan ink, etc.). In the near future, this evolution will probably be even faster, as there will be more and more tattoo artists!

What do you think of the regulations? Do we need more or less controls on tattooing methodologies?

Regulations are definitely necessary, but in some countries, like France, the standards are probably a bit excessive!

Does your family support your profession?

Yes, of course!! At 100%. Everyone has followed my tattoo career since the beginning, and they know how far I have come today!

What are your favorite inks?

For black and gray on clear skin, I like to work with the brand Silverback. Otherwise, I also use World Famous Tattoo Ink and for cover-ups, I use Eternal.

What are your favorite machines?

Only rotary machines: Stygma, Inkjecta, etc., but I mostly use Cheyenne machines.

Which skin-care product would you recommend?

Currently, I work with a range of French products made by For My Tattoo.

Tery Do • Biomechanical Tattoos With a Touch of Realism 13 May 2019

Do you want to say something else to our readers?

If you like my style and want a piece of 100% artwork, you can contact me very easily by email or Facebook. I am very open to all proposals. You are also more than welcome to visit my tattoo parlor in Ho Chi Minh City (Vietnam) to make, for example, a complete arm in 3 or 4 days.
I also offer a taxi service to my customers who wish me to do large-scale work.

Thank you for reading. I hope to see you again soon.

France Passion Tattoo
60 Nguyen Cu Trinh street, District 1, Ho Chi Minh City.
00000 Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam

Tery Do • Biomechanical Tattoos With a Touch of Realism 13 May 2019