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Robert Hernandez Tattoos Dan Marshall's Hand
A couple days ago, I received a phone call from my friend DanMarshall telling me that Robert Hernandez was in town from Spain and that they were all heading to my favorite bar (Three of Cups) for some "welcome to the country" drinks. There was only one tiny problem... I was in Cincinnati Ohio.


Needless to say, I missed out on that fun night.

Thankfully though I was back in town to meet up with them Saturday afternoon in the Tribulation Tattoo studio. I had woken up just in time =). Dan was going to get his hand tattooed by Robert. There wasn't anything planned out, and it was going to be totally free-hand. As with many people out there, I'm a huge fan of both their work, but this seemed like an important occasion for a ton of reasons, and I was glad that I was able to be there to check it out. On top of that, it was a nice warm day in the city (like 65), so everyone was in a good mood everywhere!

The reason this is more than just one tattoo artist tattooing another is with the history of these two artists.

Around six years ago, Dan had moved into NYC and was working at Last Rites with Paul Booth, Tim Kern, and Liorcifer. At that time, he was also living on Tim's couch out in Brooklyn. A few months later, I moved into the city from Jersey City (thank god that was over), and I needed a new roommate. I was in Last Rites fucking around and I mentioned that I was just down the street, and if anyone knew of someone to let me know.

I was friends with everyone in the shop, except Dan at that point (not, not friends, but we just never really talked). He said that he'd like to check it out, and for the next 4 years, Dan was my roommate.

Over that time, I got to watch Dan's artistic style progress. During that time, one of the more frequent guest artists at Last Rites was Robert Hernandez. I remember the first time I saw him working. I had walked into the studio and saw a little, soft-spoken guy in the corner working on someone's leg. When I saw the almost-finished piece, I was awe-struck. It was one of those moments when you're like, "holy shit, that's even possible?!" His work is beautiful.

If you're not familiar with his work, you need to stop reading this now, and check it out!


When I first met Dan, he had a very particular style of work. It mainly focused around color work with a twisted, macabre anime look and feel, hence his acceptance into Last Rites. Paul and Lior were the black and grey guys, Tim and Dan were the color guys.

Many people came from all over to get work by him and craved the type of work he was producing. Then, something happened. I'm not sure of the exact moment, but it was quick, and it clicked. His work became more dark (both in style and color) and more developed overall. I remember one day thinking, "He's onto something big here..."

His work started having pieces of what would later become his style today. I would notice little things, like cracks around the eyes of a skull, or the life-to-death sweeps across a face. These types of things really stuck out, and eventually they all came together to form what makes up his work today. And the influence of Robert Hernandez's work is huge in the development of this. I know Dan sees it, but from the outside, it was pretty cool to watch the chrysalis form and take shape to what it's become.

And now, Dan was getting his first hand tattoo, and it was from Rob
.: Adam
Since 2003, Adam Callen has been the editor and publisher of, not the largest or oldest full-spectrum body modification publication on the planet, but pretty damn awesome =). Copyright © 2023 Adam Callen. Permission is granted to reprint this article in its entirety as long as credit is retained and usage is non-commercial. Requests to publish edited or shortened versions must be confirmed in writing. For bibliographical purposes this article was first published March 8, 2009 in New York City, US.

I hope someone sees the humor in this =)
First one!!! Awesome story there, Adam. I'm hoping to get a Hernandez piece one day. I see what you mean about Dan's style changing over the years and getting influence from Robert.
Posted on March 9, 2009 (12:02am)
Posted on March 9, 2009 (12:53am)
Posted on August 12, 2009 (1:04am)
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