The tattoo industry in Hong Kong kickstarted during the colonial era, when navy ships would dock by the masses in Victoria Harbour. Thousands of sailors would get inked on these foreign shores and then set sail again with their custom pieces. Tattoo legends like Jimmy Ho, whose father was one of the first tattoo artists in Hong Kong, are still tattooing today. Even though there is a relatively long history of tattooing in Hong Kong, it is only in the recent years that this city has seen vast expansion and diversification in the industry.
Over the last three years, Hong Kong has held a Tattoo Convention annually in September. The convention has been one of the main driving forces behind the recent boom in Hong Kong tattoo culture. The convention gathers visiting artists and exposes the general public to the art form in new and innovative ways. The media has also played an integral role in this development. Shows like LA Ink have created a ripple effect throughout the world, even reaching the distant shores of Hong Kong. It is things like this that are taking tattooing from being something that was previously a bit lowbrow or taboo, and transforming it into a mainstream and sellable art form.
Hong Kong will always be a dynamic community as it continues to be one of the world’s most transient international cities. Tourists, short-term contracts, cruise ships and mini stopovers all promote a random flux of diversity into the tattoo market. Rich Phipson, co-owner of Starcrossed Tattoo, said that it is due to this that their shop doesn’t have a particular client base. They indulge a very wide variety of customers from all over the world. It goes without saying though that Starcossed Tattoo has a large group of regular clients who have a particular preference regarding the artist they use.
作為一個移民性的世界都市，香港社會永遠充滿了流動性。旅客、短期工、遊輪和小型中轉遊船……所有這些都為這裡的文身市場增添了一種隨機的多樣性。文身店Starcrossed Tattoo的老闆之一Rich Phipson表示，他們的文身店沒有特定的顧客群，取而代之的是來自世界各地各種各樣的人群。自不必多說，Starcossed擁有龐大的常規客戶群，這些顧客對文身師都有自己的偏好。
Starcrossed currently has four artists: Ross Turpin and Rich Phipson from South Africa, who own the shop; Jack from Hong Kong; and Michael, who has been an apprentice for a couple years and is now tattooing clients. Each of the tattoo artists has his own unique visual style but a unifying quality in their work is their bold use of colour.
Starcrossed目前有四個文身師：來自南非的兩位店主——Ross Turpin和Rich Phipson；香港的Jack，以及經過幾年學徒生涯，如今已成正式文身師的Michael。他們每個人都有自己的文身風格，不過這幾人有個相同點就是他們在用色上都非常大膽出色。
In current society – and especially in a place as diverse and vibrant as Hong Kong, people have the freedom to construct their own sense of self. Identity is less likely to be wrapped up in things like one’s profession, social status, or race. Freedom of expression and tattoos contribute to the creative composition of the modern day individuals’ identity.