Great Lakes Tattoo is taking everything that they’ve come to not fancy about mainstream tattoo conventions and proceeding to do the opposite.
GLT’s owner Nick Colella commented:

I feel that present-day tattooing and standardized tattoo conventions have gotten so far away from what they first were about. It used to be a bunch of likeminded people hanging out and doing tattoos on customers from all over the world. It was about catching up with a network of people from all over the country and just keeping good company. Now, the modern conventions are too packed and full of distractions and that has shifted their focus; the actual tattoos are secondary. I wanted to put together a mini-convention with amazing artists that would celebrate the one thing that got all of us where we are.

With the focus in mind to bring fun back into conventions, Great Lakes Tattoo is hosting a two-day convention that is all about getting back to the roots.
On March 19th and 20th, 2016– they will be hosting twenty tattoo artists from all over North America. Seven of those will be GLT artists, with the remaining thirteen being guest artists. Additionally, GLT will host an opening party and flash preview the evening of March 18th.
The awesome thing about this classic convention style is that it’s all about tattoos once again. The artists have created designs specifically for this event– and clients can choose a design from flash cards to have tattooed that same day (as well as from Great Lakes Tattoo’s flash collection). It’s always slightly disheartening for me when I call a shop to make an appointment for a tattoo design that I’m completely stoked about, only to be told that I will have to wait a month to get in. It’s always worth the wait, but the sooner the art is part of me, the better.

With that said, the artists are on a first come, first served basis– so if you aren’t feeling like waiting, then be sure to arrive early. But, Great Lakes Tattoo did make it a point to say that an effort will be made to accommodate everyone they are able throughout the weekend.
That Saturday and Sunday, the convention will be in full force from 11am to 7pm. This is your chance to get quick service and phenomenal work from some of the best artists around the country and neighboring Canada.

The Great Lakes Tattoo 1st Annual Walk-Up Classic Tattoo Conventiontattoo artist lineup is as followed:

Great Lakes Tattoo Artists:
Nick Colella
Mike Dalton
Mario Desa
Erik Gillespie
Kevin Leary
Miles Maniaci
Matt “Beatdown” Ziolko

Guest Artists:
Bill Baker (Toronto, ON)
Beau Brady (New York, NY)
Steve Byrne (Austin, TX)
Greg Christian (Cleveland, OH)
Chip Douglas (Long Beach, CA)
Brad Fink (St. Louis, MO / New York, NY)
Mikey Holmes (Charlotte, NC)
Marina Inoue (Boulder, CO)
Jennifer Lawes (Toronto, ON)
Robert Ryan (Asbury Park, NJ)
Dan Smith (Tustin, CA)
Scott Sylvia (San Francisco, CA)
Glennie Whitehall (Toronto, ON)

These twenty artists are some of the most vital and influential tattooers in North America today and having them together in one room for these two days will be a monumental occasion. Be sure to clear that weekend and prep your canvas for some new art.

The GLT Walk-Up Classic is sponsored by Lucky Supply, Old Standard Supply & Time Tells Pigment. Keep up to date with this event by following GLT on Instagram, @greatlakestattoo / Twitter
and at

Opening party and flash preview the evening of
Friday, March 18th.

Convention on
Saturday, March 19th / Sunday March 20th, 2016
11am – 7pm

Great Lakes Tattoo
1148 W Grand Ave, Chicago, IL 60642
(312) 870-0458


Submit your review

Create your own review

Average rating:  
 0 reviews