Sounding Off: Sarah Miller
“Ink master” Sarah Miller was born to be “wyld.”
Photo courtesy of Fautaugraufy
Sarah Miller, managing partner of Wyld Chyld Tattoo and runner-up on the second season of Spike TV's “Ink Master,” developed a love for art when she was 2 years old. That passion blossomed into an interest in comics and animation — and finally led her toward a career that’s more than just skin deep.
Why did you choose tattooing?
I didn’t really pursue it as a career until about four years ago. I got laid off from my job; [tattooing] was the only thing keeping me sane. I got a job at Jester’s Court in South Side. The more I became involved with the industry and the people, the more I fell in love with it [all].
Was it a difficult transition from graphic design and illustration?
It wasn’t too difficult; there are basic principles on both as design-based fields where you’re working with clients. … The hardest thing, I think, for the transition was dealing with stereotypes because it’s very much a boys’ club.
Do you have a mission as a tattoo artist?
To pioneer my own style. I want [people] to look at my work and say, “That’s a Sarah Miller piece.”
Do you have any special plans or goals for your future in tattooing?
Even before the show, my goal was to open my own shop — and I just did that this past March. My next goal is to start traveling the international and United States tattoo circuits, to go to as many conventions as possible, to expose myself to other artists and more artistic viewpoints, and continue to push myself to really find my artistic voice.
What was the highlight of competing on “Ink Master”?
Getting the harsh critiques — even if it was horrible at the time. It really pushed me to understand myself better as a person and pushed my art to the next level.
What’s the most memorable Pittsburgh tattoo that you’ve done?
[I did a] Pittsburgh skyline — but here’s what set it apart: Since [the customer’s] last name was Stall, we put a Jordan Staal jersey on a girl with a chainsaw fighting off a horde of zombies in front of Pittsburgh. It was probably the most fun I’ve had doing a Pittsburgh tattoo — and I’ve done plenty!