Meet Tamara Santibanez

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Tamara Santibañez relocated from Georgia to New York at a young age and has made the city her home for the past decade. She currently lives and works in Brooklyn, combining a fine art practice of drawing, painting, and printmaking with tattooing full time at the legendary Saved Tattoo. 
 
 
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  Jumpsuit, Carhartt ; Top, American Apparel ; Belt, Zana Bayne ; Shoes, Chloe Sevigny for Opening Ceremony ; Necklace, Helen Michelsen ; Rings by Plutonia Blue

Jumpsuit, Carhartt ; Top, American Apparel ; Belt, Zana Bayne ; Shoes, Chloe Sevigny for Opening Ceremony ; Necklace, Helen Michelsen ; Rings by Plutonia Blue

on her morning routine

I usually wake up between eight and nine. I go to the coffee shop and get an americano, then come home and drink tons of water and make a blended green juice or smoothie and maybe a little egg and toast if I’m hungry. I eat while I look at emails, social media, and poke around online a bit. I normally do some drawing before I head to work around noon.

on how she started as a tattoo artist

I started tattooing on my own while I was in my last year of college and then began working in a shop at the beginning of 2010.

on her tools as an artist

I make primarily paintings and drawings on paper. I use gouache and liquid acrylic and work pretty large. I go through tons of FW inks in black and white and I have these brushes I love that have short, fatter matte black handles.

 

 Tamara's favorite books
Hanna Liden’s “Ghost Town” is a book I come back to often when I need focus and inspiration. The way she uses such simple elements of everyday life in a very potent way is something I need to be reminded of every once in a while.
— on her favorite book
  Jumpsuit, Carhartt ; Top, American Apparel ; Necklace, Gothic Renaissance ; Rings by Plutonia Blue

Jumpsuit, Carhartt ; Top, American Apparel ; Necklace, Gothic Renaissance ; Rings by Plutonia Blue

on her shopping habits and style

I generally like all black, well-fitting, simple pieces I can easily mix and match. I’ll then add a ton of accessories and good shoes and leather pieces. I realized recently I don’t like shopping much. Whenever I try to buy clothes I end up just getting versions of things I already own. I like supporting small companies when I can, like Ovate for really timeless handmade basics. 

I wear American Apparel more often than I’d like just because it’s mindless, like, oh, I need a black cotton skirt, I know I can find it there. I’ve been realizing finding good basics is harder than it seems.

  Jumpsuit, Carhartt ; Top, American Apparel ; Belt, Zana Bayne ; Shoes, Chloe Sevigny for Opening Ceremony ; Necklace, Helen Michelsen ; Rings by Plutonia Blue

Jumpsuit, Carhartt ; Top, American Apparel ; Belt, Zana Bayne ; Shoes, Chloe Sevigny for Opening Ceremony ; Necklace, Helen Michelsen ; Rings by Plutonia Blue

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I am generally a creature of habit when it comes to a beauty routine.
— on her beauty routine
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  Top, EricaM ; Skirt, American Apparel ; Harness, Zana Bayne

Top, EricaM ; Skirt, American Apparel ; Harness, Zana Bayne

on her beauty routine

I don’t usually do anything to my skin in the morning unless it’s dry, then I’ll spritz with rosewater and add a few drops of a facial oil like Laurel Whole Plant Facial Serum, Josh Rosebrook Deep Hydrating Serum, and Le Labo 'Santal 33' Perfume Oil. I also use Dr Alkaitis Organic Eye CreamOribe Oribe Gold Lust Nourishing Hair OilClairol Professional Conditioner & Shampoo for Blonde & Silver. 

I always do my eyebrows with Anastasia Dipbrow Pomade Waterproof Brow Color and Anastasia Brow Gel and I’ll do a little concealer if I need it. I wear black liquid eyeliner almost every day so it’s just the way I draw it that changes depending on how elaborate or dramatic I want to get. Sometimes I’ll add a little silver glitter with Urban Decay Heavy Metal Glitter Eyeliner underneath my eyes for fun. 

With liquid eyeliner it has to go on fluidly and opaquely and stay all day, but be easy to take off at night. Stila Waterproof “stay all day” Eyeliner is the best I’ve found. I also use NARS Velvet Matte Lipstick Pencil and Benefit Cosmetics Benefit BADgal Lash Volumizing Mascara.

 

 Tamara's favorite records

Tamara's favorite records

The “Killed by Deathrock” comp is a current favorite. Every song is so good. It was put out by friends and the artwork for the cover was done by my friend, Alex Heir.
— on her favorite record
  Top, EricaM ; Skirt, American Apparel ; Harness, Zana Bayne

Top, EricaM ; Skirt, American Apparel ; Harness, Zana Bayne

   Top, EricaM  ; Skirt, American Apparel ;  Harness, Zana Bayne  ; Shoes, Margiela ;  Bag, Zana Bayne

Top, EricaM ; Skirt, American Apparel ; Harness, Zana Bayne ; Shoes, Margiela ; Bag, Zana Bayne

tamara's favorite books

Leatherfolk Edited by Mark Thompson, Sexual Portraits by Michael A. Rosen, 100 Boots by Eleanor Antin, Ghost Town by Hanna Liden, Cameron: Songs for the Witch Woman by Yael Lipschutz and Philippe Vergne

tamara's favorite records

Only Theatre of Pain by Christian Death, Horse Rotorvator by Coil, Venus Ejaculates Into the Banquet by HUMANBEAST, Shit Split by Filth/Blatz

tamara's favorite places in nyc

La Superior for tacos

Blind Barber for coffee

Brooklyn Fox for lingerie

Spoonbill & Sugartown for impulse buying way too many books