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The Story Behind Surrey’s Hottest New Tattoo Artist

Art transcends into so many different mediums. One medium that has always been around, but recently coming to be more “accepted”, is the Tattoo realm. I got a chance to talk to Sean Sue, a Surrey based Tattoo Artist who has a lot to say about her field of work, and how she started her Tattoo business.

What did you do before you entered the tattoo world?

Before tattooing I went to school to become an addictions worker. During that program, I realized I wanted to work with families and apply my new counselling skills in that setting. I then earned my childbirth educator certificate and began a 3 year journey working as a Doula.

While doing that, I started birth photography and started volunteering with Fraser Heath, and taking photos for families whose babies had passed during child birth or who were going to pass. Working with all the families and being welcomed into such sacred settings was the most humbling and honouring experience.

What got you into art?

Some of my earliest memories are sitting at the kitchen table with my Dad, drawing and creating art. He always encouraged me to take classes and try new mediums.


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Another lace floral piece! I love doing those bc I have a giant rose with lace behind it on my arm too 🖤

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Some ankle roses 🌹

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From my flash ❤️

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Who are your inspirations?

As cheesy as it sounds, I would have say my Dad and Grandmother have been the biggest source of inspiration for me in my tattooing journey. My Dad was told by an art teacher in high school that he would never make a career in a creative field. He didn’t listen to him, and pursued his dream job. My grandma moved from China when she was 18 and opened a general store, and raised 5 kids. When it comes to tattoo artists who inspire me, I have mad respect for Disa. She over came some pretty big obstacles growing up and shows a tremendous amount of support for other women and other artists.

What obstacles have you faced during your journey?

This is kind of a loaded question! Lol, I would say the first obstacle is being a woman. I have been accused of inappropriate things and have been put into very uncomfortable situations. On the other hand of that, being a woman and working at a woman owned shop has open me up to an amazing demographic of clients who want tattoos, but want to get away from the stereotypical tattoo shop, and enjoy the respectful and non judgmental atmosphere.

Also, being a mom of 2 and working as a tattoo artist is the hardest balancing act. I will tattoo for 8 hours at the shop, then go home, have dinner with the family, put the kids to bed then spend about 4 hours drawing for the next day of tattoos. I don’t personally know any other female tattoo artist who are also moms! So if you’re out there, hit me up and tell me you ways.

I see you’re based in Surrey, how has this city impacted your craft?

Surrey has been awesome to me since I started tattooing. I love the diversity of my clients and how accepted tattoos are now. I think the growing popularity of Surrey has really helped me expand my brand. I am so grateful for all the support I have been shown in my first year of tattooing!

Any campaigns you are currently working on?

Right now, I’m wrapping up a campaign for “aide4paws”. I will be donating $10 from every animal portrait I have done over the past few months. Aids for Paws is a local rescue that homes animals with special needs or medical needs.

How can people reach you?

I only take booking through my website,, I book up 2 months in advance then stop taking bookings to prevent myself from taking on too much at once!

Any advice for other aspiring tattoo artists?

My advice would be draw and don’t ever think you are too good to continue learning and developing new skills. Everything I do, I evaluate and see what I liked and where I can improve for next time. I don’t recommend starting to tattoo without an apprenticeship and mentor. It’s not easy to get one, but doing things right will prevent injury and infection for you and your clients. Diseases like hepatitis and staph infection are no joke.


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Oh hey it’s the GORGEOUS @evelyneichhorst rocking a healed palm leaf by yours truly 🖤

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A flamingo to help us warm up after this weird turn of weather 🌴🌞

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I love tattooing, but I make a lot of sacrifices with my personal time and family. And that is something all artists I know say. So, it’s something to consider if you’re are wanting to get into this industry.

To keep up with Sean Sue, here is how you can follow her work!


Photographs of Sean Sue by Jen Morrison.

Bhaveek Makan

Bhaveek Makan

Bhaveek Makan is a Writer/Director, currently based in Surrey, BC. Bhaveek has lived all over, starting in Durban, South Africa. He moved to Newfoundland, Canada in 2001, where he attended high school. Bhaveek did his post secondary studies in Calgary, Alberta. After graduating in Business Marketing, he is a full time filmmaker and founder of the production company, Rendering Glint Films. His focus is in diverse story-telling, and bringing Canadian stories to life.