Brenda Flatmo Tattoo and Art bio picture
  • Brenda Flatmo

    I am a tattooer and aspiring painter. In this blog I have two aims: by sharing some of my work as both completed pieces and progression shots of projects, I hope to give the viewer a peek into the process of tattooing. I also hope that this blog might bring me closer to my work by forcing me to be more methodical and contemplative as I record and photograph these projects in various stages of development. Generally, things move so quickly in business, art and in life, that as one project or job is finished, I find myself rushing headlong to the next task and I hope that this blog might slow down time, if just a little.

  • PluraBella, LTD.

    My studio is called PluraBella. I share it with my husband, Kore- an extremely talented artist and tattooer that is a daily inspiration to me.
    We live and operate in Cincinnati, Ohio, although we make regular trips to the Los Angeles area and even to the occasional tattoo convention.

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Celtic dragon with flames

Detail shot of Celtic dragon sleeve tattooI find large scale Celtic tattoos to be one of my favorite challenges. I prefer to work with the zoomorphic or animal designs over just the knot work alone- they tend to allow for more interesting and effective flow on the body. I also love to mix other design elements with the knot work- in this case, some Tibetan inspired flames add color and more layers to the piece.

This tattoo was done over a single summer in maybe 5 sessions, which was a testament to the toughness and determination of my client( and maybe some on my part, too!). I plan on showing this particular Celtic tattoo in it’s various stages of completion, from sketches, sizing and tattoo phases to completion, so if you are interested, check back and look for that installation in the next month or so.



Mike’s Godzilla tattoo!

3 views of Godzilla sleeve tattoo.


Detail from Godzilla sleeve tattoo

I had tattooed this client before on several occasions , always with smallish tattoos. I knew that he was a huge fan of all things Godzilla ( obviously), but this request was a complete, happy surprise to me. It’s definitely one of those project requests that I think most tattooers would love to get- a mixture of the traditional and more modern, with some humor. In this tattoo I tried to do my version of some pretty traditional Japanese tattoo design elements( whirlwinds, water, and flowers) and mix them with some sweet Godzilla and Mechagodzilla images , also redone in a traditional style. I don’t often get to do whirlwinds and I really, really enjoyed that part of the tattoo-I have always loved the nice, clean scalloped edge that you get with this style and it was great fun to be able to play with the motion and movement, as well. I can only hope that my tattoo future includes more whirlwinds and, if I’m very lucky, another chance to make a Godzilla tattoo someday.

a couple of cardinals.

cardinal and flowers

cardinal and peach

cardinal in color

cardinal in flight

I absolutely love to make tattoos of birds.  There are certain types of birds that seem to hold very special meaning for people and cardinals are at the top of that list, at least in regard to tattoo imagery.  They, in particular, seem to impart meaning to people and to evoke very serious emotions for them- perhaps it’s due to their striking color and beauty ; that they are often noticed in a cold and bleak winter landscape- or maybe they are indeed critters that bring special messages and feeling to humans when we most need to have them.

Anyway, as I realize I’m getting a bit flakey and foo foo here, and I should mayyyybe reign it in- they are loads of fun to tattoo and to attempt to illustrate. They have just the most remarkable combinations of warm and cool colors. The females and juveniles are, in my opinion, even more beautiful than the males- but in the world of tattoo symbolism, the males reign supreme for their striking color.

These two tattoo requests came at the same time, from clients unknown to one another- which is always interesting to me, as well- the connections that clients have to each other in that they share a similar symbolic vocabulary.

Hopefully, in the future, I will have lots and lots of cardinals to add to this gallery( hint, hint).

Kelly’s sleeve in progress

Riemenscheider mourning figure, in progress
Riemenschdeider mourning figureRiemenscheider mourning figure

Here are some in progress shots from Kelly’s last sitting spread over a two day visit at the beginning of December. The figure at the top of his arm is Tyche and was done last spring. The new forms at the bottom are based on a statue by the German sculptor, Tilman Riemenscheider and were chosen to reflect Kelly’s heritage. For the next session we will be adding background and more flowers to bring everything together and maybe a bird?? We have yet to decide on that last little bit of subject matter…

We should be completing this one next month, so I’ll have photos to post of the completed sleeve very soon!



Kelly - January 17, 2012 - 7:33 pm

Im so happy with this. Its amazing how you took this from wood and translated it into a great tattoo

Really fun time at the studio. it gets better every trip!

admin - January 18, 2012 - 4:36 am

It was such a great project and I’m really please with your sleeve so far, too. And I’m really looking forward to your next visit so that we can move on to the final stage. (!!!!)
We love having you here at the studio!! You are one of PluraBella’s favorite guests!!