Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in arts but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Dmitry Troshin, Founder of Mister Troshin INC, located in Irvine, CA, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
My business is tattooing, teaching other tattoo artists, and creating art. My customers are all kinds of people - from students and 9-5 workers to athletes, musicians, artists, and huge business owners. Most of them fly here to California from other states and countries to get tattooed by me, and I really appreciate that.
Tell us about yourself
I started tattooing over 10 years ago, inspired by black-and-grey and Chicano art. After just a few years in this business, I started traveling worldwide, doing tattoo conventions, and winning awards, including "Best of Show" in New York, Montreal, and Los Angeles. Now I live in Southern California - the place I always dreamt about, sponsored by Bishop Rotary - the world's best tattoo machines manufacturer, and work at the Vatican Studios - home of so many great artists. I do workshops for other tattooers, create educational content, and even have time to make art on my days off.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I'm proud to say that I'm now teaching and inspiring hundreds of tattooers not just through my work but also by doing in-person seminars, workshops, and online education. The tattooing style and technique I created many years ago is a massive movement now, with more and more artists exploring its benefits and improving their work significantly. That tells me more than any award.
What's one of the hardest things that comes with being a business owner?
The hardest thing is to adjust to modern realities and trends. You always have to invent something new to not be lost amongst hundreds of other artists and their ideas. It's a constant process of evolution of yourself as an artist if you want to be on top of your field. If there's a new social network - you gotta add it to your daily routine. If there's an opportunity to collaborate with an artist who does completely different things - do it. Anything you can do to improve and learn something new.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
If you're just starting as a tattoo artist - invest all your time and money into learning from the best tattooers. They spent years (or even decades) figuring out the ways of doing it, and nowadays, you can learn all of it from them directly, which boosts your career and saves you so many nerves, and helps to avoid so many issues by learning from their mistakes. It's so easily available now compared to the time when I started that you can get to the point of becoming a world-famous artist and make really good money a few times faster if you do this.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
Turn your craft into recurring revenue with Subkit. Start your subscription offering in minutes and supercharge it with growth levers. Get early access here.