DELLS BUCKET LIST #24 - Getting ink at Point Blank Tattoo & Body Piercing

Having a needle penetrate my body between 50 and 3000 times per minute is not something I let happen to me often, but for my latest Dells Bucket List behind-the-scenes adventure, the alluring draw of getting ink permanently imbedded into my skin was just too much to resist.

Point Blank Tattoo and Body Piercing studio is located on the strip in downtown Wisconsin Dells, and has been giving both tourists and locals alike beautiful custom works of art on their bodies since 1997. Recently, I got to spend time hanging out with the Point Blank artists who taught me about the tattoo process, and ended up giving me some new skin art of my own. 

Manager Eddie B. and fellow artists Vic and “Q” weren’t willing to share their full names for reasons they kept to themselves, but they did impart some of the knowledge of the art of tattooing that they’ve acquired over the years. While none of them are originally from the area, they now call the Dells home, with their love of the art form bringing them together at the cities only tattoo studio.

Tattooing has been practiced for centuries in many cultures, offering those that can handle a bit of pain a chance to artistically express themselves virtually anywhere on the body. While the more popular spots are generally arms, legs, chest, and back, having applied tattoos on literally thousands of people, Vic told me that the guys have pretty much seen it all: “Eddie tattooed a face before, but you can tattoo just about anywhere. Inside the mouth and stuff like that.”

While occasionally they’ll get someone that passes out from the pain, requiring some sugar and time in front of a fan to revive them, most usually take the rapidly driving of a needle in and out of the skin in stride. That said, I had to ask who generally handles the pain better, guys or girls. Vic told me: “Girls by far, for sure.”

Having gotten ink a couple times before, the first being of a cartoon character at the age of seventeen, which I’ve documented the booze-influenced experience in my book Santa’s Village Gone Wild, I felt the time was right to get another. Seeing the many trophies and blue ribbons around the studio of these award winning artists immediately took away any trepidation I had of getting my third.

I decided to go with my Axcreations company logo, a stylistic black and blue “AX” which was also my nickname in college, given to me from the often use of my father’s American Express card during late night excursions to Denny’s to satisfy the munchies for me and whoever drove.

After filling out a release form which asks whether you have any illnesses that can be transmitted by blood or are taking any medications that would prohibit someone from getting a tattoo, I sat down on a comfortable reclining chair similar to what you would find at a dentist office.

Watching “Q” as he prepared his tattoo machine, which earlier I was immediately corrected by Vic when I mistakenly called it a gun: “Guns to a tattoo artist are offensive.” Or more bluntly put by Eddie: “Guns kill people!” I asked what went into making everything sterile. Eddie told me that they use an autoclave, similar to what you would find in a hospital: “It puts it under fifteen to twenty pounds of barometric pressure at 240 degrees for forty minutes. Same things surgeons would use.”

Comforted by the cleanliness of the tools, I threw my leg up onto a pedestal, and watched as “Q” put on gloves, shaved the hair from my ankle, and then wiped it down with a disinfectant. Moments later, his foot hit a pedal like those used on a sewing machine, and the needle came to life penetrating my skin about a millimeter deep, depositing a drop of insoluble ink into the skin with each slightly painful puncture. Roughly fifteen minutes later, I had permanent reminder of my college years, as well as for the company I hope to grow into a successful lifelong business. 

 Before leaving, I asked Vic what was his favorite part of working in a tourist town tattoo studio. He said: “I guess I just like meeting all the people. You get a lot of people coming in and out of here, but really it’s just something I like to do. I enjoy what I do, and these guys enjoy their art. Probably the nicest thing is seeing them walk out of here happy.”

For more information about getting your own work done at Point Blank Tattoo and Body Piercing, visit their Facebook Page, drop by the shop located at 419 Broadway, or just call 608-253-3055

For more pictures of my visit to Point Blank Tattoo and Body Piercing visit the Dells Bucket List Facebbok Page here.