Ryan Weaver did not set out to be a tattoo artist.
He was a bass guitarist in the punk scene and was preparing to go on tour.
But Weaver, the owner of Kingdom Tattoo and a fan of the art of tattooing, had the serendipitous chance 15 years ago to apprentice under two famed Atlanta tattoo artists, Rob Knight and Gary Yoxen at Tornado Tattoo.
He also worked under artist Cap Szumski at Timeless Tattoo.
Now Weaver is on his own and in October of last year, he opened Kingdom Tattoo at the East Decatur Station development at 111 New St.
"I played music — punk rock — everybody had tattoos. I was drawn to the culture of tattoos through music," the 38-year-old told Decatur Patch. "The more tattoos I got, the more interested in tattooing I became."
He stopped counting after his 50th tattoo. While musicians often sport a lot of tattoos, Weaver said fans come from all walks of life.
"I have tattooed brain surgeons, school principals and council people," he said.
And many more folks come in with an idea of what they want, having done their research, Weaver explained.
He said that blends perfectly with his philosophy that artists' work should reflect what the client wants, not what the artist wants.
"I’ve really tried to make it clear that our idea of a good tattoo is making what the customer's idea is and making it a good tattoo."
Over the years, he's been commissioned to create lots of designs.
The one that stands out as among the most memorable:
"I did one of condiments — packets of mayonnaise for one customer," Weaver recalled in creating the design on the man's torso.
"He liked mayonnaise."