Masters Of Ink: Cinematic Tattoos By South Korean Artist MingTendo


Masters of Ink is a Konbini original introducing you to a whole spectrum of tattoo artists from all over the world. Custom designers specializing in every style from modern dotwork to traditional Americana tattoos – tune in for something new every week!

The minimalistic style adopted by many South Korean tattoo artists is becoming more and more popular these days. But minimal doesn't mean simple or easy and the work of MingTendo perfectly illustrates this less is more approach to tattooing. The artist tells Konbini:

"My philosophy in life is that happiness comes from small things and it, indeed, applies to my conception of tattoo art and to my work."

MingTendo's designs reduce images to their essence with very delicate lines and soft color palettes. The result is poetic and calling to imagination and empathy: "People in my tattoo designs don’t have facial features, but you still can read their expressions and emotions. When people look at my work, they can build their own stories."

MingTendo is fascinated by emotions, but also by movement. Indeed, their tattoos are often inspired by scenes from movies and animations. Their references include popular flicks such as La La Land, Ghibli’s characters and intimate French films. Of course, the artist enjoys adapting movie scenes to their own style. MingTendo explains:

"I usually draw things that are full of life and relate to people. I’m using movie scenes that have impressed me and that can become an important signifier or a motto in someone else's life.

When I first drew my favorite movie scene, people were enthusiastic, so now, they often request their own favorite scenes."

Even though MingTendo tends to capture the dynamism of contemporary cinema in their designs, the artist insists that body art should stay intimate and its meaning shouldn't be easily deciphered based on its visual form. "Something that is very special one person is not relevant to someone else. I just want my tattoo work to be cherished as small secret treasures by my clients," MingTendo says.

"When they look back on their life, I want my tattoos to be small memories of some of their happiest moments. And then, maybe this small amount of happiness can turn into something greater, you know, just like a happy ending in a movie."

Follow MingTendo on Instagram and see more of their work below: