Ollie Newhook Interview

We featured some of Ollie’s work in THSLFE Issue 2. Ollie Tattoos at SouthSide Custom Ink in Springvale, Melbourne. Hit him up for quality tattoos that are made to last.


First up, thank you for your time, what’s been happening?

No worries at all. Just the usual, trying to keep busy. Tattooing, painting and so on.

For those who are unfamiliar with you, can you tell us a bit about yourself and what you do?

I’m Ollie Newhook, I’m from Nz but been living in Melbourne for nealy 5 years now. Married to my beautiful wife Grace.
I tattoo full time and paint various things.

Do you recall when you first got in to art?
Yeah from a really young age as far as i can remember. Around 4yo but possibly earlier. I’d draw birds while xmas holidays with my family.

What phases/styles did you go through artistically to come to do what you do now and who/what influenced or attracted you to those styles along the way? How did this lead to you starting to tattoo?

There have been many influences along the way. I was drawn to tattoos at about the age of 14-15. I started buying tattoo magazines and studying them. Didn’t help me much though as i still to this day don’t feel I’ve found a solid style which is mine or what I’ll keep doing.
I love Japanese style, traditional, black and grey fine line. I guess i don’t want to pigeon hole myself to much.
At age 16 i did a week work experience (picking up ciggie buts) at Dermagraphic tattoo in Ponsonby in Auckland. Then didn’t pursue tattooing again until i was about 25.

You grew up in New Zealand and moved to Australia later on, do you feel the environment you grew up in has influenced your style and approach to art and what you do today?

No not so much. I’m influenced a lot by friends. Being in Australia in a busier shop definitely helped my technical application and efficiency of applying a tattoo.

Getting up every day knowing that you have to create can be a hard thing to do, how do you stay motivated and what inspires you to get up and do what you do every day?

My main motivation is my need to improve. I don’t feel I’m one of those naturally gifted creatives. I feel I need to work harder to improve. Also money fame and bitches (jokes Grace).

I’m sure it can be agreed that Social Media platforms such as Instagram have as many negatives as they do positives.  What do you think about the influence they have

 on Tattooing, Tattooers and the Tattoo Industry?

As far as social media goes, it’s a great way for anyone to get their work out there. I would love to have no need for it but the fact is, i do. Not sure anyone would know me without it haha.

What’s the weirdest thing you’ve encountered, seen or been asked to do while working in a Tattoo Shop?

I’ve tattooed CUNT i  old english round the back of a tattooer friends head. Ear to ear. BIG. I really wasn’t sure but he insisted. Luckily he’s not bald. Yet

Alright, lets talk some shit.

What’s in your pockets right now?
A rubber band

What have you been reading, listening to and watching lately?
Reading Amund Dietzel : These Old Blue Arms and listening to a bunch of random shit.

What are five things that you always pack with you on your travels?
Sketch book, headphone adapter jack for planes, markers, camera and undies.

What’s next for Ollie Newhook? Anything happening or coming up we should know about?

Keep an eye out for a group flash book with a bunch of mates.

Where can people follow what you’re up to and view your work?