Telluride Tattoo and Piercing Opens on Main Street
TELLURIDE – Telluride Tattoo & Piercing opened this week on Main Street, offering quality body art services for anyone willing to push their boundaries and find new and exciting ways to express themselves. Artist and studio proprietor Ken Rommel offers body art consultations and a wide breadth of tattoo and piercing services; everything from full sleeves to smaller tattoos, and from industrial piercings on adults to children’s ear piercings.
Rommel has a background in arts and design. “I grew up in Santa Fe, N.M.,” he said, which was “a huge town for art. My mom was of the fine-art discipline, so I definitely grew up with creativity and artistic expression all around me.” He became fascinated with tattoos upon receiving his first inking, at 15.
Having moved to Telluride with his then-girlfriend (and now-wife) in 1995, Rommel worked for lift operations and the gondola at the Telluride ski resort for over a decade as a mechanic. His passion for art, and his mechanical inclination, bode well for his tattoo artistry, a profession that requires a blend of creativity and artistic skill as well as a wide prowess of tattoo machinery capabilities.
Rommel became inspired to open the tattoo studio while he and his family were vacationing in Southern California; he had promised Zoe, his oldest daughter, that she could get her ears pierced for her ninth birthday. Scanning the area for a body modification shop, the Rommel clan found a surfer tattoo and piercing studio that appealed to them.
“The studio was very clean and sanitary; it had bright red walls, and punk surfer music playing over the speakers. Zoe’s piercings were done with a needle, which is much safer and better for the healing processes, because it doesn’t offer the blunt trauma you get from those piercing guns.
“Since Zoe had a great experience, I thought to myself, ‘Telluride needs this,’” Rommel said.
With a vision for a Telluride studio, Rommel went to work to make it happen. Opening a tattoo and piercing business requires substantial training and dedication, he said, and students must find the right education from talented artists.
“I spent a month straight – seven days a week, 12-hour days – working at the School of Denver Body Arts, and studied under renowned body artist Rob Gonzalez,” said Rommel, “I spent a lot of my time at the school learning sterilization methods, which is the biggest priority for studio owners.”
Telluride Tattoo & Piercing provides clients with an inviting and relaxed atmosphere. Formerly home to Telluride Alpine Eye Care, it offers the ultraclean, almost clinical attention to cleanliness that Rommel deems necessary. He uses mostly disposable equipment, and says he’s invested heavily in state-of-the-art cleaning equipment that’s kept sterile.
The studio’s sofa and seating area offers a wide selection of tattooing books for client inspiration, and Rommel is always open to consultation appointments. He encourages residents and visitors alike to visit the studio, and lets clients play DJ, selecting whatever music puts them in the mood to receive quality body art. He’s happy to turn on Taylor Swift for the girls who come for ear piercing.
For more information, call Rommel at 970/708-1204, or stop by the studio at 398 W. Colorado Avenue, in Telluride.