We had the good fortune of connecting with Kendall Wallor and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Kendall, can you share the most important lesson you’ve learned over the course of your career?
Number one, never give up and keep moving forward.
In any line of creative work you are the only force driving yourself to improve yourself and your craft daily. Sure, like everyone will tell you, self motivation is key, and that’s great but that’s truly not everything. And the key to success in my line of creative business isn’t necessarily being that type “A” golden star personality standing on a stage lecturing people about how they love everything about their perfect work life balance and recent book they wrote on how they found “The Key to Life and Being a Success at It.” What I learned that was truly important in building yourself and your careers when your an artist and a tattoo artist is that you truly cannot ever stop moving foreword or working hard. If you stop and give up, so does your career. You have to have the tenacity to push through the 3 hour sleep weeks, and money budgeting extremes for the years it takes until one day it just pays off and you just see the pay offs. That’s the ultimate lesson I’ve learned through all the struggles of building myself and my career as an artist.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
My art started out as being something I wanted something anyone could access and get something out of and not just people in the art community. Originally as an oil painter i painted large scale anthropomorphic imagery combined with existential dream theory to be able to give a feeling to the audience that they could immerse themselves into. I later transitioned into animal portraits, which I really enjoyed being able to give to people of the animals they knew and loved.
However at the time it was incredibly difficult to work as an artist in the economy without the resources now available that we have today on the internet. Today I get way more requests for portraits then ever and I barely have time to keep up. But the time will come soon!
Naturally I felt as an artist that transitioning not skin would be an amazing way to give people an even better way to acces art in a way that made them happy. I’m always all about being on the forefront of making the type of art I do access able to everyone and comfortable for anyone to come to me about! For tattooing my number one goal is to change the stigma of that unfriendly tattoo artist type persona. That’s just not me and I work hard at my craft and perfecting what I do and getting to know the people I tattoo and each of their personalities and stories. I’m never bored and theirs never a dull moment in my chair. It’s always a good time and from first timers to seasoned people. And if you are a first timer you will not be scared! That’s what I’m about.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Seeing as I remember doing this exact same thing not long ago and that I see a lot of out of towers I tell a lot of people similar things. But it depends on their style.
When I first came to Arizona I wanted the full experience so I went from everywhere from Tombstone to the antique shops of Prescott, to Sedona’s crystal shops, to Flagstaff’s white top Mountain View’s and Cave Creek in between at the Buffalo Chip where I was right up at the pen fence getting dirt in my face from bucking bulls and eating bar apps watching girls on swings over the bar and drunk people tie their horses up outside to ride home later. That is a real Arizona feel right there on a Friday night.
Those are my favorite places hands down, and I think I’ve been to Tombstone 3 times. Me and my sister are huge old west fans and we used to do Wild West show re-enactments, so getting to go to the Bird Cage where Doc Holliday and Wyatt Earp walked was amazing and nostalgic.
I do believe the drive to Sedona and the red mountains of Sedona are some of the most beautiful places I’ve seen to this day. It’s too hard to photograph and send to friends and it’s something every single person hands down should see in Arizona to really understand why all those dumb looking sunset painting people paint of Arizona look like how they do. It’s because that actually look just like that and it’s unreal! Spectacular!
And don’t forget to try sone deep fried cactus it’s delicious.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I’d 100%say my entire family has supported me throughout my entire creative career from day one, even when I didn’t even know why I was doing what I did. But most importantly my sister was the most important person to have throughout the entire process of building my tattoo career.
Her constant ability to understand where I was coming from and pick me up to help keep me going and put me back together when I thought I’d fall apart from years of sleepless 80 hour workweeks with no days off for months at a time from long distance were the only thing keeping me going at times I believe. So my shout out is to my sister Alexis who has always pumped me up and always helped me out encouraging me to go foreword when I started to slow down and loose my energizer batteries! I really don’t think my success story would be here today without her. So thank you!