Tear Creations
By YP Contributor

Inked at a Young Age

Great artists often begin early. This holds true for Tear Creations owner Brandon Topple who, at the age of 15, began his tattoo career with only a needle,, ink and his own skin.

“I grew from there,” Brandon says. “I’ve always been artistic and creative, I’ve always enjoyed working with my hands.” Brandon built a homemade tattoo machine at the age of 16, attained his first job as a tattoo artist in a parlour before his 20th birthday, and eventually went on to own two tattoo shops.

We are here to serve the public, to make them as happy walking out with a tattoo as they were walking in with an expectation. - Brandon Topple, owner

Airbrushing vs. Tattooing

Tear Creations began as an airbrushing business in Fort McMurray, while the tattoo portion opened when Brandon moved the business to Sherwood Park in 2011. Now a fixture on Whyte Avenue, Tear Creations allows Brandon topractice his lifelong passion every day of the week. “I’ll always come in early or stay late for a customer,” Brandon says. “That’s the biggest thing in this business: your attitude towards tattooing. We are here to serve the public, to make them as happy walking out with a tattoo as they were walking in with an expectation.”

Naturally, not everyone can get what they want due to size and placement, but the goal of the shop is to try and please all comers. “I try to be understanding and try to make customers feel at home. With my employees, I try to make it a laid-back environment, not like an office.”

Part of what differentiates Tear Creations from other tattoo parlours is the option of airbrushing, which is not permanent like tattooing. Brandon has worked for the Bounce radio station, airbrushing designs on fans at concerts headlined by artists like Selena Gomez and Avril Lavigne. “Generally, airbrushing is cheaper. It also washes off, if on skin, or can be painted over if it’s on a vehicle,” Brandon says. “Tattoos are a lot harder to get rid of—and there’s also a lot more design and detail that goes into a tattoo.”

Pink Ink: Tattooing for Breast Cancer Research

The tattoo community in Edmonton always finds a way to give back. Every year Tear Creations donates time to tattoo pink ribbons in support of the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation. “Forty dollars gets the ribbon and all that money goes to breast cancer research,” says Brandon.

While Brandon now enjoys a reputation as a talented tattoo artist with shops in both Edmonton and Spruce Grove, he understands what a long road it can be for new tattooers. “The ability to impress people in the tattoo industry with my talent is very rewarding,” he explains. “But just like any art form, it takes practice, practice and more practice. For me, the hardest part of this business has been finding steady employees, but when you’re starting out, the hardest part is your art.” His advice? “Don’t be afraid to tattoo yourself: screw up on your own skin before somebody else’s!”

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