Dirk Vermin from A&E's Bad Ink

Dirk Vermin

Tattoo artist, painter, writer and musician Dirk Vermin owns Pussykat Tattoo a block from the strip in Las Vegas. Sure, he loves his whiskey, he likes his guitars and he speaks his mind and offends anyone in earshot. But he’s also raising two daughters and is a soccer Mom in a Rock-N-Roll man’s body. He packs dance bags with leotards for his youngest daughter and takes her to practice. He holds court on the field at soccer games with the other “moms” for his oldest daughter. His daughters make him a teddy bear. He just happens to have tattooed skulls and snakes running up and down his arms.

Dirk runs his infamous tattoo parlor, but you better book months in advance – Dirk is by appointment only and only does serious work, and is THE go-to guy when you need a bad tattoo transformed into a masterpiece. “One of my recent favorites was turning Charles Manson into Frankenberry.” And as a regular on the Vegas circuit, Dirk’s got a laundry list of insane clients and crazy tattoo fixes that he encounters daily. People stop him every day because his tattoos are so amazing and ask him for help. Everyone finds their way into Dirk’s shop, from beat cops, strippers, tourists, rebellious school kids, showgirls, housewives and Vegas performers; Dirk tattoos the wildest characters on the Vegas scene with the skill that only a seasoned and terribly charming artist can.

Covered in his own work, Dirk is fearless when it comes to tattoos, so when a guy walks in with an entire sleeve that he wants completely transformed, Dirk is all over it. His last entire sleeve transformation took four hours and went from a tribal mishmash done in prison to an awe-inspiring 3D, optical illusion castle, complete with gargoyles.

Never one to turn down a challenge, Dirk transforms fad tattoos, like tramp stamps, into artwork that people are proud to show off. And when it comes to a name, Dirk has transformed so many “Robert’s B**ch” tattoos, he’s beginning to wonder who Robert is and why he can’t seem to hold onto the gorgeous strippers he’s been marrying.

Due to his success, Dirk makes his own rules. He’ll refuse to do any tattoo he doesn’t like on the spot, no matter who’s asking, especially when it comes to tribal arm bands. “I’ve done enough in this industry that I’ll never have to do another stupid butterfly ever again… and when a guy walks in and wants Yosemite Sam, I tell him no, he’s getting what a real man gets: a pinup girl.” Dirk’s also keen to throw out anyone wearing Ed Hardy and has no patience for tattooing clients in odd places.

Even though he’s the most seasoned guy on the strip, he’s not above making mistakes himself. “I’ve misspelled more tattoos than I’d like to admit to… but I always find a way to fix them and it always becomes that person’s favorite war story.” Having even misspelled the word “tattoo” on a 60-year-old client once, Dirk’s the king of damage control and knows exactly how to schmooze his way off anyone’s sh** list in a matter of seconds. “I never shy away from supplying my clients with the best tattoos… and the best whiskey.”