I got a tattoo by Duke Riley last week. A few days after his navy ship battle at Queens Museum I met him at his parlor East River Tattoo in Greenpoint and for the next 3 hours I cringed in pain, electrifying surges of razor sharp stabs incising my foot over and over. And Duke wasn’t all that gentle about it either. He bent and pushed and twirled and stretched that foot around like it did him wrong. But, it’s over and now it’s just itchy as hell. Michael came with me and recorded the process.


Eyewitness to Joann Kim’s First Tat By: Michael Farmer.
Sitting in east River Tattoo with Joann Kim. Joann 25, very beautiful gets
her first tat. An octopus that starts on her right ankle and wraps around
her whole foot. The Artist, Duke Riley 37 owns East River Tattoo. Duke is
quite the artist. Duke’s ship battle took place over the weekend at the
Queens Museum and has made National coverage. Now he is about to make some
coverage on Joann Kim’s foot.
Joann nervously asks me to be here for moral support. I feel a little sick.
Joann has chosen black ink to penetrate her beautiful smooth as silk
Korean skin. I think the tat is a little large, but I can tell that Duke
is a master of his trade. Kittie Joe, 33 works in Duke’s shop and also took
part in the boat battle. She is sweet and treated me to Ice coffee only
minutes after meeting me. Duke now has a red sharpie and has put an ink
transfer on Joann’s foot. Joann looks over her shoulder at me with a
smile. I think that she is a little less nervous, however no needles yet.
Three o’clock on the nose, and the buzz of the gun is loud. Joann is
freaked out and has her hands over her eyes. Duke has started. Joann is
reclined, The Yeah Yeah Yeah’s are blasting and suck. Joann’s hands are
little and sweaty and are gripping mine from time to time. She has quit a
grip for such a little frame. Now she is reclined on her back and with a
quiver of her chin I think that she might let out a cry soon, but her
hands are folded on her chest and she starts to sing along with the Yeah
Yeah Yeah’s.

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