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January 03, 2014

Video Article

When Josh Wrede was a teenager, his mother worked in a tattoo shop. It wasn’t a place he found appealing.

“I didn’t want to be part of it. I didn’t really want to be around it that much,” he says.

What Wrede did like was art. He drew a tattoo for his mother, who showed it to the owner of the shop, and the high-school student ended up regularly drawing tattoos for shop customers. Now a well-known tattooist in Denver, Colo., and covered from the neck down in permanent art, he feels differently about the profession.

“Slowly as time went by, the more time I spent learning how to tattoo, the better I got, the more my excitement and passion grew for it,” Wrede says.

Likewise, he says he learns much from people when they sit in his chair.

“I think it’s one thing to get a quick little tattoo with your friend after you’ve had a few drinks, ya know, something that takes 10 minutes. But to get heavily tattooed, to sit there for a few hours, it takes a good amount of willpower. Obviously so does enduring a CrossFit workout. So I think that having the ability to suffer to get something that you want is important,” explains 33-year-old Wrede, an athlete of several years at CrossFit Verve.

And getting a tattoo is also an experience.

He says: “There’s something about it where you feel like you’ve had a little bit of change in your life and you’re a little bit more complete every time, ya know.”

Video by Jordan Gravatt.

11min 52sec

HD file size: 219 MB
SD mov file size: 82 MB

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Additional video: Sherwood Chronicles: Community Part 5 by Pat Sherwood, published March 12, 2011.

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3 Comments on “Josh Wrede: Creating Art on Skin”


Dale Saran wrote …

Nice piece, Jordan. Some amazing artwork Josh does.



wrote …

Josh gave me my tattoo and I love it. He is an amazing person and incredibly talented.


wrote …

Great video and story on Josh. He's a genuine person inside and out, and I'm proud to have his art on my skin, he's incredibly talented and humble at the same time. We are lucky to have him at Verve.

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