The Coursewrker Series is an effort to showcase people who are considered to be leaders of their craft and industry who best exemplify what the Coursewrk brand is about — doing what you love.
The first of the Coursewrker series is a Chicago tattoo artist from the shop Great Lakes Tattoo who goes by the name "Beatdown". His real name is Matt Ziolko and I'm not sure how he got his nickname. All that matters is this guy is amazing and so is every artist in this shop. Matt tattooed me for the first time a year ago and it's still my favorite tat I have so far. If you don't know Great Lakes Tattoo and you appreciate the traditional style, you need to know and you need to go.
I first heard of Great Lakes Tattoo from my barber Isaac Holmes (I'll speak more of him in a future Coursewrker Series) who recommended the shop to me. Word of mouth seems to be the best advertisement and when someone who's taste you trust tells you to go somewhere you usually go. Its safe to say I'd probably be fine with only going to this shop for all my tattoos if I had to. That's how much I like this place and the artists.
I recommended Matt to my cousin Francis who was getting a tattoo of his bulldog Leland. The final result was even better than what I could have imagined. It's so beautifully done and accurate. It has the right balance of the traditional style and realism. See it for yourself and then go make yourself an appointment.