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AZ Tattoo Expo Brings the Needles to Mesa Convention Center this Weekend; Artists Dick Goldman and Sage O'Connell Show Us Some Ink

One of many labors of love for Urban Art Tattoo owner Sage O'Connell.
One of many labors of love for Urban Art Tattoo owner Sage O'Connell.
Sage O'Connell

There's a popular saying in the tattoo business: "Your body is a temple, but how long can you live in the same house before you redecorate?"

If your "temple" needs to be adorned with some new eye candy, more than two dozen renowned tattoo artists will be redecorating people at the 10th Annual AZ Tattoo Expo this weekend, hosted by local radio deejays Lady La and Joey Boy from Power 98.3 and Robin Nash from The Edge 103.9. Skin scribes scheduled to attend include the cast and crew from TV shows Inked! and Hart and Huntington, Sean Dowdell of Club Tattoo, Dick Goldman of Blue Dragon Tattoo, and Sage O'Connell from Urban Art Tattoo.

Last year's event drew more than 15,000 attendees, and this year, organizers expect about 18,000 people. That can make things kind of hectic for prominent local tattooists Goldman and O'Connell (the latter is also one of the organizers of the AZ Tattoo Expo). Luckily, we caught up with them before they packed their tattoo guns for the event and played a little game of "complete our sentences."

Sage O'Connell (Urban Art Tattoo)

I became a tattoo artist because...I felt so inspired to create art as soon as I started hanging out in my mentor's shop that I felt I needed to give it a try and see where it took me.

The first tattoo I ever did was...a little cholo [slang term for a Mexican gangster] clown face above my left knee.

My favorite tattoo on my body is...my portraits of my mom and my son. They were done by two friends that I looked up to when I started tattooing.

The most painful place to get tattooed is probably...the top of your feet or the ribcage. They are very similar in pain, but since everyone's body is different, there is no one place that is the worst.

The weirdest thing I've ever tattooed on someone was...a very pink and irritated hand smack across her right [butt] cheek.

Dick Goldman (Blue Dragon Tattoo)

Before I became a tattoo artist, I was...doing auto body repair.

The first tattoo I ever did was...cover a girl's name on a guy's arm.

My favorite tattoo on my body is...the tattoo of the Viking god Thor on my back.

If I could tattoo someone from history, it would be...Attila the Hun.

When I'm tattooing, I like to listen to...blues.

The 10th Annual AZ Tattoo Expo takes place Friday, April 30, through Sunday, May 2, at the Mesa Convention Center. Single-day tickets cost $16; three-day passes cost $35. Visit www.aztattooexpo.com for more information.



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