Going from drawings into a tattoo studio

By Ivamere Nataro ,

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Christopher Adolfo Krieg with his uncle Eric Tavita.

Christopher Adolfo Krieg with his uncle Eric Tavita. (Photo: Misiona Simo/Samoa Observer)

At a young age, Christopher Adolfo Krieg knows how to become a successful entrepreneur. 

Chris, as he is commonly referred to, is 26 years old and is a shared owner of the Eris’ Tattoo and Barber Shop located at Matautu. 

He’s a tattooist and he loves what he does because it’s basically his passion and it makes him happy. 

Chris’ uncle, who now operates the barber shop, used to work with him, but since he has opted to do barber, Chris chose to continue their work. 

It took a lot of savings and sacrifice for him to operate from inside a shop, he said. 

“I started this place for a year now. But back then I used to work from home, do my work from home, now I just want to step further a little, freshen things up and try and do things by myself,” Chris said. 

“I saved a lot for to operate from here, and the store is $800 per month for rent. Everything cost a lot, especially the chairs and everything else I use in the shop, it’s really expensive.”

But he earns enough from the eight-10 customers he gets in a day or week, to cover for all his expenses. 

“It’s really good money you earn from tattooing and barber as well, and it’s even good when you’re in one spot,” Chris said. 

“The customers I get in a day depends on the people who do their bookings, people who walk in, there are a lot of people who walk in, so probably eight-10 people a day, or a week. It’s all different.”

It’s even good income when a bulk of his customers, who follow his work on social media platforms, are from overseas. 

“There are people coming in from overseas to do tattoo and all of that, so it’s really good money. 

“The price range depends on how big the tattoo is, how you want it. In a week, I probably get $3,000 in a week; if people get big tattoos then I probably get more than that. For full sleeve tattoo, it’s probably $1,000 - $1,500. The smallest tattoo would be $20 - $30.”

Chris was initially into drawings and paintings when he was in college, and studied construction when he entered university, but that all changed when his dad passed away. 

“I started doing tattoo in 2010. It’s been six-seven years now since I have been doing tattoo. I just wanted to continue doing tattoo, just to do something different and as long as it makes me happy.

“I see a lot of people into drawings as well, and I wanted to do something different from ourselves, so I want to continue doing all that, what I’m good at in a different way.”

He spent a few years operating in the same trade in Australia, and he said his work allows him to meet and learn about new people. 

“Sometimes people come with their designs, sometimes it’s free hand, I do it by myself and I draw it all. All the designs, patterns they have meanings, whether it’s to do with culture, religion, family or anything.” 

Chris said he does not look to change his field of work, but hopes to expand his business. 

“I am still thinking of continuing what I do and what I love to do and what makes me happy.”

His advice to young people is to do something you like, and that makes you happy. 

“People are different in what they think and what they say, my advice is to do what you have to do, and do something to make yourself happy, and make your family happy, aim for your goals. There’s always a point that you want to get at, so you’ve to start small and think big about yourself, and you’ll end up well.”  

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