Moscow-based tattoo artist Herman IX has been dreaming of visiting Russia’s far eastern city of Vladivostok since he was fifteen. Before he began inking, he was graffiting on the streets. But soon after majoring in graphic design in 2012, Herman Devyashin got into tattooing – when he would spend his free time leaving marks on his friends. Eventually the hobby turned into a career, and he conceived of a work tour across Russia with the aim of documenting the latest trends of the art, and in turn proving that the tattoo scene is very much alive in the provinces.
In 2015 he teamed up with the filmmaker Stepan Vetoshnikov, and they commenced their two-month long Russian Tattoo Tour. Lacking any sponsorship and spending only money Herman earned from his craft, the pair made it from Kaliningrad all the way to Vladivostok. The end result is an atmospheric video that blends together shots of vibrant urban environments, interviews with renowned tattoo artists from across the country and a gritty soundtrack by Moscow-based electronic producer Raumskaya. In addition to video, Herman created a book that contains the designs of all 94 tattoos he made while on tour. It is available for purchase via firstname.lastname@example.org.