Carl Kerssen

I was always interested in tattoos even as a kid. I got my first one when I was 15, with my moms permission of course, she signed for it and it was given to me by Neil Grant. After being tattooed by various other people between the ages of 15-19, I met up with Steve Barjonah, who was stationed on the same ship as me in the Navy. Once learning that I had some natural art skills and a desire to learn it was Steve that gave me my first step in the door, introducing me to all kinds of people in the industry and showing me some of the basics I needed to pursue being a tattoo artist. Once discharged from the Navy I worked fulltime as an electronics technician at a pacemaker company while tattooing by night in my make shift tattoo studio at my parents house. It soon became apparent where I belonged when someone at the pacemaker company took offense from a recent tattoo I had gotten, and I was told to cover them or be fired. Needless to say, I didn’t do as asked.   I found a little spot in Ramsey and founded Forever Yours Tattoos inc. in December of 1994. Working off of typewriter stand and some metal drawers with home made stainless counter tops I made it work. As time went on I couldn’t keep up with the demand so I started hiring more help. After awhile I started learning to pierce as well and added that to the arsenal of services performed at the shop. Forever Yours Tattoos was progressing well and in 2004 I opened a second shop in Hollywood Ca, which I closed 5 years to the day of opening in June of 2009. I know now Hollywood was not the place for me and never trust partners. The industry slowed down and has changed a bit over the last few years but after dropping the dead weight of both my partner in Hollywood and a shop manager that were robbing me blind, FYT is back on an uphill climb and things are great. With  the advent of all the tattoo TV shows the industry has changed again, and most reputable artist would agree not in a good direction.   The number of bad artist is increasing and people are going from the kitchen table to owning shops in the matter of weeks.  Unfortunately it will be you the consumer that pays the price for this, not only by lessons learned but in the cost of getting cover ups or removal of bad tattoos.   So with some hard lessons learned, and the knowledge I have gleened over the years, i have decided to take the shop in a new direction and create a private one man studio, No other artist, no piercers and no drama, I never knew I could be so happy.  Without the stress of worrying if an artist is going to quit on me cuz they didnt want to work more, use less supplies or put the money in the cash register and not their pocket, has helped creativity to flourish more than it ever has and I have been painting for the first time in years

Age: Somewhere between 10 and 40 it's a fuzzy line sometimes
Status: Married again(everyone should be divorced at least once, it builds character)
3 wonderful kids 3 dogs and a cat
Years Tattooing: 20+
Hometown: Coon Rapids,MN

Carl Kerssen's Hours
Monday - Friday: 9:00 am-5:00 pm
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