So here we are, I find myself writing this blog and amazingly, you’re reading it! Welcome to Tales from a Tattoo Artist’s Wife. My goal is to tell stories about my life in the tattoo business (hint - it’s not all glamorous), including tales of my almost-famous husband and my observations, former clientele, other artists we’ve worked with, and a little tattoo culture and news mixed in. I may not post regularly and some posts may be nonsense (I hope not). There are no set rules here on Planet Gallo.
I’m Susan Gallo, call me Suzie. I’ve been married to my tattoo artist husband for 15 years - basically you can say that I’ve been apprenticing for 15 years. But wait, who is my husband? Johnny Tattoo Gallo, born and raised in Astoria, Queens.
Gallo has been tattooing since 1986. He was first gifted with a tattoo machine from his buddies, a veterinary tattoo set for tagging animals (awesome, right?!). After tattooing FTW on the neighborhood guys, Gallo knew he had to learn how to use the machines the right way. Options were limited, there was no Amazon or Google and the handful of tattooists around wouldn’t share anything worthwhile much less sell equipment and supplies. Through word of mouth, National Tattoo heard about him and connected him with an opportunity to go to San Antonio, TX for an apprenticeship. A few weeks later, 20-year-old Gallo jumped on a plane to meet Singapore John Anderson at The World Famous Tattoo Arcade, right across the street from the Alamo. When a school bus bursting with marines all pumped to get tattoos pulled up in front of the shop on his first day, he knew that this was the real deal. His apprenticeship lasted 3 hard months before returning to Astoria. There, with the help of Bret Zarro and Jersey John, Gallo opened his first underground shop, Custom Corners, on 14th Street in Astoria, also known as the Four Corners of Hell.
Do you have any stories to share of 14th Street? Photos? (seriously, please share photos) Your first Gallo experience? Because let’s be real, Gallo is an experience like none other, and I’m not just saying that because I’m his wife. Let’s hear from you!
Follow our new shop on Instagram @northwindtattoony
Formerly known as Custom Corners ---> Painless Steel Tattoo ---> Hell Gate Tattoo ---> North Wind Tattoo
Located an hour north of NYC, just 10 minutes outside of Peekskill, NY