Fine body of work on show at tattoo festival in Leeds

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Body art fans have been happily getting the needle this weekend at the third annual Leeds International Tattoo Expo.

Taking place in New Dock Hall at Leeds Dock today and yesterday, the expo has been organised to showcase the skills of tattoo artists from the city and beyond.

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Around 120 artists have attended the event, with some travelling from as far afield as Australia and South America.

And they have worked their colourful and creative magic for crowds that are expected to smash through the 2,000 barrier over the course of the weekend.

Expo team member Emma Stone told the Yorkshire Evening Post: “It’s gone really well, there’s been a very positive atmosphere.

“The majority of the artists here have been fully booked and people have been wandering around watching and deciding what designs they want themselves.

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“With tattoos becoming more mainstream, the industry in Leeds is definitely thriving – there always seems to be new studios popping up.”

Tattoo artists at the expo have included Neil Dransfield, Jesse Singleton, Jonny Gilbert, Jaysin Burgess, Adam Smith and Chris Devine.

The weekend’s programme also includes competitions, piercing shows, live music, an intriguingly-titled “alternative drawing class” and red-hot performances from the Leeds Steel Cats fire-breathing troupe.

Many local businesses have lent their support to the event, with hairdressers Harlow’s Den and King Koby’s Chop Shop turning out along with clothing and merchandising firms.

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There was a positive reaction to proceedings on social media, with @abbyhobson29 taking to Twitter to hail the expo as “the coolest place” after deciding to go along on a whim.

Another Twitter user, @meganb2203, joked: “Leeds tattoo expo today, must resist the urge to get any stupid tattoos.”

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