Brandon Burgos, the youngest tattoo artist in Puebla

Brandon is 11 years old and has been giving tattoos of different sizes and difficulties to people, including his dad, uncles and friends, for over a year.

Nota: Este contenido tiene una versión en español

Brandon Burgos Vargas is 11 years old and has been tattooing people in his spare time for more than a year. He learned by watching his dad, Jesus Burgos, who owns the JB Tattoo studio and has been in charge of guiding him in this hobby.

In an interview with Poblanerí, Brandon says that, thanks to the support and trust he has received, he has been able to learn the art of tattooing.

However, father and son assure that it is only a hobby and that –for now– the most important thing is to do well in school.

For Brandon, his interest in tattooing began when he was 9 years old. He did it by observing his father's technique, coupled with his taste and talent for drawing.

He began helping to prepare the tables for the tattoos in the studio and later to make the stencils.

The stencil is the basis for a tattoo. It is the design that you are looking to capture on the skin and its process is important, because the lines that are drawn must have the right size and precision to be the guide when putting the ink.

For the boy, tattooing is a hobby that he uses to distract and relax; he says he wants to continue studying and finish a career, because one of his dreams is to be a Marine.

Brandon, tattoo boy
(Brandon and Jesús Burgos have their tattoo studio north of the city of Puebla. Photo Juan Carlos Sanchez/Express Media)

Practice makes perfect

Tattooing is not only about using the needle on a person's skin, but also involves an important prior process, he says. For that reason, he has read books that talk about the tattooing process to know hygiene protocols, first aid, quantities, force used and everything you need to know to make a design.

Her father, Jesus, has been a guide. Not only has he helped him practice, but he has also served as a human canvas, as Brandon has given him more than six tattoos.

"Since I was 10 I started [tattooing] on oranges and synthetic skin, but I've been tattooing people for a while now (...) I've tattooed many people, my dad, my uncles and those who ask me, so I've done many tattoos of different designs [of different sizes and complexity]", says Brandon.

Learning about the theoretical basics of a tattoo, Brandon assures that practice is his main strength.

Making the stencils, which can take anywhere from 20 minutes to an hour, depending on the complexity of the design, was something that helped her to be able to paint the skin.

Brandon, tattoo boy
(Tattoo done by Brandon Burgos on his dad's skin. Photo credit: Juan Carlos Sanchez/Express Media)

Out with the taboos

For Brandon it is important that people know about the world of tattooing and that they don't get carried away by labels that are usually put on tattooers, by labeling them as criminals or bums.

Jesus Burgos considers that the responses he has received, regarding the learning and practice of his son, have been more positive than negative. Both he and the users, are recognizing the talent that the 11-year-old has.

"As a father I have always told him that his studies first, he is doing very well (...) and when this pandemic started, that's why he also focused on this. (...) I would support him as far as he would tell me, but whatever he wants," he says.

For that reason, he invited parents to support their children from a young age with their tastes, passions and talents, as it is important for their development and could help them in the future.

Text: Pamela Camacho Lara
Multimedia: Juan Carlos Sánchez Díaz

Translation by: Karla Giselle Bonales Ramírez