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High Voltage Tattoo

3.92 of 5 stars 3.92  ·  rating details  ·  1,605 ratings  ·  135 reviews
From the charismatic star of The Learning Channel's number-one program "L.A. Ink" comes a rich view of contemporary tattoo culture, as only a true insider can offer. Full-color throughout.
Hardcover, 176 pages
Published January 20th 2009 by Harper Design
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The Word Made Flesh by Eva TalmadgeThe Mammoth Book of Tattoos by Lal HardyBodies of Subversion by Margot MifflinPermanence by Kip FulbeckHigh Voltage Tattoo by Kat Von D
Tattoos and Skin Illustrations
5th out of 115 books — 27 voters
Bossypants by Tina FeySeriously... I'm Kidding by Ellen DeGeneresElixir by Hilary DuffThis Is Your Captain Speaking by Gavin MacLeodHappy Accidents by Jane Lynch
Celebrity Authors
38th out of 128 books — 62 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,913)
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I'm going through a huge Kat Von D phase, not unlike my vegetarian cooking phase, addiction memoir phase, running phase, Swedish pop duos phase, learning to play guitar phase, Belinda Carlisle phase -- well, the last one is more of a lifestyle.

She's the Kat Von D'jour.

The punk rock tattoo artist who busted out of the super-vanilla "Miami Ink" for her own show -- "LA Ink" based in Hollywood (next door to Edible Bouquets, ohfer cute) -- is this fascinating gravitational pull. She looks like a Barb
This is a pretty cool book. I was never into tattooing until I caught a marathon of Miami Ink. Yup, I'm one of those TV converts. I enjoyed the stories of why people wanted their tattoos, some are so touching, such as memorial tattoos. But mostly I love the art. I'm a fan of any show that features transformation, from house design to cooking, cake decorating, etc. I'm just amazed and entertained by seeing people create beauty.

Which is a big lead up to the story about Kat. She was featured on th
My parents bought me this book for Christmas and I read it in less than a day. It's pretty cool for those who, like me, have a little thing for the tattoed goddess, Kat Von D.

The first part of the book is an autobiography of sorts, chronicling how Kat got into tattooing and the experiences that made her who she is today.

The second part, which is probably my favourite part, is a directory of Kat's tattoos, explaining their origins and meanings.

In the rest of the book, Kat reminisces about the tat
I love Kat and this is an awesome book. everybody who has a dislike for tattoos should read this one as well as anybody who is scared of tattooed people. i recently got my first tattoo (as did my sister) and we were lectured by everybody about how we were going to be looked down upon by society and blah blah blah. I also watch LA Ink (Kat's show) which really shows her as this tough business chick who doesn't take crap from anybody but there are also moments where you can see that she feels bad ...more
Visually stunning. The tattoo photography is amazing. Kat's "map" is fascinating, although when she talks about future plans it's not really clear where she's got room. Winner.
la ink photo: la ink LA-Ink-Promo.gif

I am a huge fan of Kat Von D,i think she's inspirational and totally amazing. I got both of her books for Christmas and i'm working my way through the second one now. When i was reading this book i didn't want to fly through it i wanted to savor it enjoy it as much as possible.

This book tells us about Kat's early life, family life, how she started out with tattoos, tattoos she's done, the tattoos she's got, different types of tattoos and other artists tattooers and not who she admires and inspi
I actually had intended just to look through this book at the store taking my notes down for this assignment, but ended up buying the book. I loved it! The book itself is styled after an old journal with padded covers and parchment like paper which is kind of kitchy but works well for the book. I have serval tattoos and love to look at other people's tattoos. I don't watch Miami Ink or LA Ink, but like to concept of the shows and thought it would be interesting to get inside her head a little. T ...more
Summary: High Voltage Tattoo is a graphic perspective on today's global tattoo culture by Kat Von D, star of The Learning Channel's L.A. Ink and one of the most talented and popular artists working today. Designed in a style that is reminiscent of a handmade Gothic journal with its red padded cover, ornate typography, and parchmentlike pages, it throws the door wide open to tattooing culture in the way only an insider like Kat can.

High Voltage Tattoo traces Kat's career as an artist, from early
I should start by saying that I have not watched Kat Von D's reality show (LA Ink, which is on TLC) yet. Kat Von D is a very talented tattoo artist and visual artist, and this book showcases a lot of her excellent work. I could tell that this well worn library book (sections were falling out!) has been pored over by many readers. I found it a bit strange that she writes several times about personally receiving or giving tattoos while being drunk, but then later under the etiquette section, she t ...more
Erin Ashley
First off I really have to say that this is a wonderful depiction of the tattoo world summarized into one book. From tattoo etiquette to different styles of tattoo, it is all covered. I know this is only one persons view on the tattooing world that she has been in, but her view on it has given me a real insight and taught me things I didn't know before.

Kat Von D, basically most of the general population has heard that name at least once in their life or know exactly who she is. She has had quite
Luna Freebird
Love this book. Kat Von D was my hero years ago, when I first decided to be a tattoo artist. She IS heavy metal. Her artwork is so amazing, and she doesn't get the credit she deserves for it. On her show, you don't see enough of it, its more about the general aspect of what going on & the drama going on between shop employees. I really enjoyed hearing tattoo stories, though. Theres so many people out there getting shitty, meaningless tattoos, so its nice to see Kat Von D's amazing memorial p ...more
I don't know why but I am kind of obsessed with Kat Von D, maybe because she is my polar opposite I find her so alluring and interesting. She is the bad ass I long to be but never will be :) I don't even like tattoos, I don't ever want one, but I find her story and obsession with tattoos fascinating...and I cannot believe I am saying this but after reading this I kind of want my own tattoo, nothing big or crazy, something unobtrusive and really small. I like how the book talks about what tattoos ...more
Jun 01, 2014 Ruby rated it 3 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Aspiring Tattoo Artists, Fans of LA ink etc....
I rented this book from the library and quickly flicked through it last night. This morning, I did a more 'in-depth' look. I think it is an interesting book, especially if you are an inspiring tattoo artist. But after a while of reading, I got a bit bored... After about half way through, I just basically looked at the pictures! But is a great look if you have just seen it in the library or something and want a flick through.
When I picked up this book for the first time I was very much drawn into the allure of tattoos and the whole indie-beauty thing that was (and still is?) popular. I liked that Kat Von D had enough ink to write a novel on her body. I ate the book up quickly, very much a poppy kind of picture book with an interesting look into the life of Ms. KVD. The pages showing her tattoos, which takes about a few pages to do, are excellently photographed and fun to look at. I gave this book to my friend not to ...more
I picked up this book while I was waiting for Tattoo Chronicles to come in. It was definitely a book all about tattoos and the amazingly talented artists behind them. I loved Kat's tattoo directory (5 centerfold pics) from every angle: front, back, side, other side, and hands. And she has the old Hollywood starlets!! Love it!! My daughter was baffled why i was reading a book about tattoos of all things (virgin-skin me!) and i said, its fascinating art- Kat's an artist just like you! And flipped ...more
Faye Ducker
It was awesome to find out so much about Kat and her background, I feel like the book should have included more of this autobiographical feel rather than pictures of her art, which don't get me wrong is amazing, but a little boring to look at after a while.
A family member checked this book out from the library and I decided to read it before it was turned back in. I've watched LA Ink several times and I was curious to learn more about Kat. While I'd never get a tattoo myself (I wouldn't want to be stuck with it permanently), I do find the art interesting and often beautiful.

The layout of the book caught my interest as it looks similar to a scrapbook. It's very attractive and the pictures are interesting. It was nice to get a bit more insight into
The book itself is lovely and makes a great coffee table book. I started to get a little bored while reading it about mid-way through but I enjoyed looking at the photos of Kat Von D’s tattoos and artwork.
Dan Rugg
Great book loved the pictures and the stories some were sad, some happy, and some parts were inspirational. All I all the story is a must read for anyone with artistic abilities or just lovers of ink.
I loved this book. Great coffee table book as the cover and quality of the pages / images are great!

Easy to just pick up and flick through and an interesting read as well.
Lauren Blue
Love Kat! Wish the book was more about her life than the work. Although looking at the pictures of her work was awesome!
Oct 08, 2010 Amy added it
This is maaaybe a good example of why people who aren't writers shouldn't try to write books. I really enjoyed the photography, but the writing (predictably) is pretty sub-par. And didn't she have an editor? Sheesh. There were some pretty glaring mistakes that put my teeth on edge. And it wasn't even very biographical, which I guess is what I was hoping for - it's more of a quick and dirty look at who's who and what's what in the tattoo world. This is a good one to get out of the library for an ...more
I started watching Kat on Miami Ink and L.A. Ink and was amazed by how young and extremely talented she was. Her book is full of beautiful artwork , from sketches to paintings and of course tattoos. It's filled with stories about her life how she got started and what inspires her to tattoo. Also many of her friends and their tattoos and the stories behind them. I assumed it would be a book filled with just her tattoos, just pictures. There where so many amazing tattoos like the Guernica by Picas ...more
Pamela Voyles
This book is a beautiful collection of artwork done by Kat Von D and other tattoo artists she wishes to showcase. Kat shares stories behind the tattoos. I personally do not have a tattoo nor want one, but I was drawn to the cover of the book. It made me pick it up and look inside. I was delighted to find all the beautiful sketches and tattoos featured in the book. The book was placed on the YALSA Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers, 2010. It made the top ten list. This book is an autob ...more
I have a thing for Kat Von D. She's like the female, in my humble opinion, who can pull of a ton of tattoos. I picked up this book knowing it would be a short read and lots of pictures. I was not disappointed with either assumption. Everything from a bio to Von D's work is included in this one. The actual book itself is kind of cool, with a squishy cover.

A more detailed, in-depth review to come. Once published on my blog, I will link here.

**EDIT** blog post is here: http://unkomminsense.wordpres
Mar 01, 2014 Franzia added it
Shelves: read-now
it was great i've never hade an experience like this before
Dec 30, 2009 Casey rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Anyone interested in Tattoos/Tattooing
This book was honestly amazing!

At first I thought I was paying $30 for a 'big ole' picture book'.. That was NOT the case what so ever.. As much as I love Kat Von D I was worried about how much 'depth' this book would have, I was so surprised when I started reading it and realized this book was PACKED with information and entertaining things! The first part is like a small Kat Von D biography which was really neat to read and the rest was all about Tattooing, Tattooers and pictures/stories of ama
Couldnt put this down she is one of a kind
Gerri Leen
I got this because I'm enamored with the show L.A. Ink and the writing of this book was a major part of the second season. It's a beautiful and fun book. The language is, unfortunately, a bit adult so I don't feel like I can give it to an early teen friend who's into art, for example. I was expecting a little more there there, which is why it's an A minus. But still a gorgeous book, and it does shed a lot of light on things (maybe more than a little if you haven't seen the show).

Rated: A-
This book is beautiful. This person is all skin and ink. There were these full page diagrams from all angles of her bod, with bullets to all of her tattoos and small descriptions of why she got those ones. Very anatomy of a junk drawer esque.

I also really liked the family and remberance tattoo portraits. A connection I cannot imagine. A grief I do not know. Someone called this a glorified myspace profile. Hah.

Keeping the tattoo momentum alive. Go go go sandwiches. Go go go crush.
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great history 1 3 Dec 12, 2012 02:59AM  
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Kat Von D (born Katherine Von Drachenberg) is a Mexican-born American tattoo artist and television personality. She is best known for her work as a featured tattoo artist on the TLC reality television show Miami Ink. A subsequent TLC series LA Ink, premiered August 7, 2007 in the United States and November 11, 2007 in the UK.
More about Kat Von D...
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