Submitted 06.28.24

FLOW | Dave Koenig Fireside Tattoo Network

Creating a unique style in tattooing goes beyond technical skill—it's about capturing "flow." Flow encompasses the seamless movement of lines, the harmony of shapes, and the overall balance that guides the viewer's eye across a design. This concept is central to the work of Dave Koenig, a tattoo artist whose journey from traditional art to tattooing and commercial art has been marked by a dedication to creating captivating compositions.

Dave's artistic journey began with a foundation in Fine Arts, Anthropology, and Native American Studies at the University of Nebraska Omaha. This diverse academic background shaped his approach to art, blending cultural influences with a deep respect for technique and aesthetics. His transition into tattooing in 2001 marked a pivotal moment where his passion for art met the canvas of human skin.

What sets Dave apart is his ability to infuse each tattoo with a sense of flow. His meticulous approach starts with loose mark-making that evolves into structured compositions, ensuring that every design not only fits the body but also enhances its natural contours. Whether it's intricate scrollwork, gestural figures, or mythological motifs, Dave's designs resonate with a sense of movement and grace.

Beyond tattoos, Dave's creativity extends into commercial art, where he collaborates on projects ranging from custom guitars at Soapbox Guitars to illustrating liquor labels. His work transcends mediums, from ink and watercolor to large-scale acrylic paintings, showcasing a versatility that enriches each piece with depth and meaning.

In his own words, Dave describes his artistic philosophy: "I just love flow. I like it when you look at a piece and my eyes feel like they can easily travel one direction, but then it can keep traveling. I like a drawing to look good on a flat surface and to look good when it's on an organic surface such as somebody's body."

Dave's dedication to flow isn't limited to artistic technique; it's a mindset that permeates his approach to life and artistry. Much like the discipline of jiu-jitsu, where he finds parallels in terms of perseverance and continual improvement, tattooing is a journey of growth and self-discovery. Both disciplines demand resilience, a willingness to learn from mentors and peers, and an unwavering commitment to mastering the craft.

As Dave continues to evolve as an artist, his influence in the tattoo community expands, inspiring others to explore new artistic horizons and embrace the beauty of flow in their own creations. Whether through tattoos that adorn skin or artworks that adorn everyday objects, Dave Koenig's legacy is one defined by creativity, passion, and an enduring pursuit of artistic flow.

Join us in celebrating Dave's artistry and explore more about his work at and follow him on Instagram @davekoenigart.

FLOW - A Story of Tattooing and Jiu Jitsu | Dave Koenig Documentary

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FLOW | Dave Koenig

- 06/28/24