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BlackMen Digital Profile: The Dutchess of Black Ink


Thursday 1st, May 2014

The Dutchess of Black Ink

By Michael Nguyen


Crystana “Dutchess” Lattimore would be the perfect example of someone fully embracing two opposite lifestyles. On some days, the Lincolnton, North Carolina, native can be seen permanently inking clients inside Black Ink Studio in Harlem, NY. You may also have recognized Dutchess from “Black Ink Crew,” the reality television series VH1 debuted in early 2013, providing insight and entertainment to the viewers based on the shop’s daily life, the artwork, and of course, shop drama.


Her tattoo career was a bit rocky at the beginning, being a female artist working her way up the ladder to be respected amongst her peers, co-workers and bosses. Dutchess is still a young, hungry and determined artist improving on her craft everyday, even while going up against the hectic life that occasionally occurs with shop drama and relationships. It's no doubt that with the right amount of focus, hard work, and dedication, Dutchess should be able to make a name for herself as one of the city's brightest talents.


When she’s not in the chair tattooing clients, Dutchess can be seen doing multiple things that are building up her brand, where she went from a mere few followers on Twitter to having 80,000 over a short period of time. She can attribute that breakout to the show, as well as the countless fashion shows, magazine photo shoots, cover pages, and beauty pageants she has participated in over the past year, including spreads on major tattoo publications, Inked and Urban Ink magazine.


Although things are looking up for her at the moment, the road getting there wasn’t as easy. Dutchess had an art background and a love for the craft at an early age but decided to utilize her business mindset instead and chose to study for her Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management while back in North Carolina. She was still undecided on which career path she should choose, but fortunately, her decision to pack her bags and move to the big city of New York and enter the tattoo world turned out pretty well for her. That risk paid off dearly, as she’s now one of the more popular figures amongst the Urban crowd and her mix of artistic talent, beauty and personality is sure to take her to great places. Only time will tell as she’s about to embrace a big year ahead with her tattoo clientele, countless photo shoots, press runs, and the drama that comes with being a rising star.