Tony "Tattoo Troll" Otto
Date of Birth: November 15, 1973
Zodiac Sign: Scorpio
Year Started: Early 1994
Favorite Style: Anything that is a challenge, and horror.
Favorite Movie: Boondock Saints
Favorite Artists: Brian Bolland, Frank Rosetta and Brom.
Tony Otto was born in 1973, in Northern California, where he was raised until school age. At around 5 years old, Tony and his family moved to Southern California and in standard Tony style got himself into some elective troubles. He created a bond of friendships with people he still considers family and dear friends today. Those friends were the same friends who enjoyed art, comic books, music and a bit of partying with Tony. He still loves many of these things today. Many of these memories and paths he crossed in his history are what have lead him to the place of owning Ironhorse Tattoos and being a tattoo artist.
It all started in 1993 in California when Tony's then girlfriend owned a tattoo machine, and was a working tattoo artist. He asked her if he could use her machines and she allowed it. This was where he did his first tattoo on himself. One of the few pieces he says he would not change, or touch in anyway even today. He then came to Las Vegas to visit his older brother of five years. His brother saw what he had done, and being a tattoo admirer himself asked Tony to do a piece on his back to show his local "friends" that tattooed and owned Las Vegas Tattoo Co. what he could do. Tony did some simple line work on his brothers back. They showed Doc Dog, owner of LVTC, who said
Tony had some potential and he would be alright with him coming into and cleaning his shop. Back in those times getting into the tattoo industry was not as easy as it seems to be in today's over saturated tattoo industry. It was not about paying someone to give you a license. It was about earning your place. Tony certainly earned his place, being forced to clean up after several tattoo artists that lived a wild party life. Cleaning the entire shop, breaking down and setting up and even ensuring they had all supplies needed. Often getting sent to walk for snacks, drinks and lunch even though he had a car they would not allow him to take it. It was about showing how badly you wanted to be an artist, as well as how much you respected those that had paid their dues before you. Tony learned his foundation from Doc, Moe, Jimmie, and many others until he decided to continue on his career path and go work for another shop. Tattoo Revolution was where he learned more about painting and other mediums as well as skin, but by this time he was a full fledged artist building an extensive clientele base. Then moving to Desert Ink, under artist Ramblin' Ray. He worked at Desert Ink for a couple of years, and then moved on to help Joshua South rebuild/remodel his new Las Vegas shop Art for the Soul. Joshua was a friend and a mentor to Tony, who taught Tony a lot about both what to do and what not to do. Unfortunately, during the process things ended up not working out and Art for the Soul was closed. At this time there were not many shops in Las Vegas, approximately 20 shops licensed, not all of which were open at the time. Tony decided he didn't want to work for a "chain shop" and decided that he would take a leap of faith and open his own shop. After looking for a location, and gathering a business partner Tony Otto opened Ironhorse Tattoos & Piercings in January of 2000, the 21st shop in Las Vegas to be licensed. With a lot of help from friends with the build out, and the marketing. It was successful beyond imagination. So successful that Tony decided to expand in April 2010 and doubled the size of Ironhorse Tattoo's taking over units 105 & 106. Which is where it stands today. Tony is a proud business owner, that has maintained dignity and respect both in the tattoo community and in the Las Vegas community. He is a proud husband, and father to a beautiful baby girl. When he is not at the shop, working, drawing and piercing you can find him with his wife and child hiking, climbing, camping, swimming and playing at the park. He is also the proud owner of puppy "Heinrich Otto".