Fireside Tattoo Network

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Helping Tattooers Become Tattoo Artists Since 2013

Podcasts, Tutorials, Workshops and Courses Designed for the Tattoo Community

Start Your Tattoo Education With The Fireside Method

"Nobody solves a problem by adding complexity".

Thats why we focus on design principles rather than "tattoo tricks".

Fireside Foundations is our flagship beginner course which introduces the Fireside Method of Tattoo Design. If you are new to tattooing or have been tattooing a while without a great understanding of fine art principles, this is the course for you.

Fireside Simplify was designed for intermediate to advanced tattooers who are looking to become more efficient and define their personal style. This course will help you to make better choices quickly by using "if/then" scenarios. You will follow Jake's design process from consulation to full color design, to stencil on skin.

Not sure which to choose? Join the Inside Fireside Tattoo Club to spend some time getting feedback from your peers, participating in drawing challenges, and get real prizes mailed to your door.

Finally, if you aren't ready to purchase, just join our Tattoo Tips Tuesday newsletter and cruise around the site watching and reading the huge amount of free tattoo content we offer

Videos & Livestreams

Giv'em The Ol' 50/50 Rule — Corey Bernhardt

Giv'em The Ol' 50/50 Rule

[02:58] “You take something very simple that everybody will know, and you kind of take that other 50% and flip it on it’s head a little bit. It makes the viewer stare at it a little longer.”

— Corey Bernhardt

Artists often face difficulty in capturing viewers' attention in a limited timeframe, so it can be very helpful and important to create elements that draw the audience in instantly. The “50/50 rule” in composition suggests presenting 50 percent of the composition as something familiar and relatable to capture the viewer, like a rooster or a skull, and enticing them with the remaining 50 percent, encouraging them to explore and engage with the artwork. 

flower bird tattoos by corey bernhardt

Corey’s “Flower Birds” are a perfect example of this rule. He shows the familiar shapes of wings, feathers, and bird legs while drawing your eye towards the head, then replaces it with an illustrative and surreal flower to disrupt the pattern and pulls the viewer in to figure out what’s going on in the composition. By offering something easily relatable, then simultaneously, the artist can inject an element of surrealism or intrigue, encouraging the viewer to observe and engage. 

Another way to draw attention is utilizing storytelling elements Incorporating recognizable features to entice viewers, and contrasting features keep them exploring further. Jake likes to take the hand holding approach, treating viewers as if they were kindergartners, ensuring the initial recognition of key elements. The aim is to guide the viewer's focus with easily identifiable aspects before introducing complexities that spark curiosity. 

Watch the full episode: 

Breaking Rules The Educated Way | Corey Bernhardt | EP 168

Tom Strom Technique Talk

Inside Fireside Tattoo Club

Technique Talk with Tom Strom 

11/29 7 pm CST


You Never Know What Might Pop-Up In Tattooing

[44:07]  “I was just doing the same thing all the time, as tattooers we’re all doing the same thing. Painting, making prints, shirts, etc. I wanted to find something challenging that people weren’t doing, and pop-ups have been way more challenging than tattooing by a landslide”

— Tom Strom

Diving into different mediums and styles as an artist is like embarking on a thrilling adventure where you never quite know what lies around the corner. It's a reminder that creativity knows no bounds and that there are infinite ways to express yourself. 

tom strom pop-up book creepy deer head skeleton

Whether you're a painter experimenting with digital art, a sculptor trying your hand at ceramics, or a graphic designer exploring traditional illustration, each new venture enriches your artistic repertoire. It's not just about adding tools to your toolbox; it's about embracing the joy of continuous learning and self-discovery, ultimately fueling your passion for art and inspiring others along the way.

Join the Inside Fireside Tattoo Club!

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This course has really changed me as an artist, it's changed the way I look for references, it's changed my approach to tattoos, it's changed my mindset to tattooing. My wife still brings up the course a lot, actually, every time I do a tattoo that she likes, she praises this course.  I couldn't thank you guys enough for allowing me a chance to take it.  I appreciate what y'all do for tattooing.  


The reason I joined  this course is because I found myself stuck in my mind after two years of a tattoo apprenticeship. I thought I could draw but actually I do lack of a solid foundation and logical understanding about the way I drew.  After joining the course, starting from a basic concept - shapes/ values/ shadows/ edges that really helped me to rebuild the core structure of a drawing. This is important for me to realise what kind of mistakes that I used to make. Furthermore, I think this course is very well-planned, from a foundation concept to the creative thinking process which is all we need to know as an apprentice or young tattooist, the sooner the better. I know it is a long way to keep going and become a good skilful artist, however really appreciate what Jake trying to combine his knowledge from different fields and share it with the new generation artists.  Last but not least, I learnt not only the skills but also the true attitude from the fireside team. I wish every success to the Fireside Tattoo Network  in the coming future. You guys rock! Respect!