When Pulitzer-Prize-winning Harvard Professor Laurel Thatcher Ulrich said, “well-behaved women seldom make history,” she hit the nail squarely on the head. Ulrich knew that for women to be heard in a male-dominated world, they had to make some noise. Enter Megan Wilson, a tough-as-nails yet sweet-as-pie tattoo artist born and bred in the Bay. If Megan had been a rule follower, the universe might not have had the chance to see her truly shine. Luckily for the tattooed masses (and any art enthusiasts, really) Miss Megan was a regular rabble-rouser and followed her wild, creative heart all the way into adulthood.
You know what "they" say about tattoos being addictive? Well, "they" might not be so wrong. See, Megan began getting tattooed at the ripe, young age of 15 (don't tell her parents) and she was instantly hooked. She began hoarding tattoo magazines and copying the images by hand, drawing like a madwoman, absorbing as much as she could on her own. She knew she loved this art form and did everything she could to immerse herself in the culture. By the time she was 18 she was getting tattooed regularly in San Francisco but was still a bit too shy about asking for an apprenticeship. At 19, a Bay Area tattoo shop had taken her on as a 'shop girl'-- you know the gal who schedules appointments, sets up the artists' stations, etc. -- and within two years they put a tattoo machine in her hands. There was no looking back, ever.
Megan absorbed everything she could from her co-workers and spent her nights, as she still does, drawing, drawing, drawing. By 22 she had become a burgeoning tattoo artist motivated by the knowledge that this was her true path. Her talent has afforded her the opportunity to participate in tattoo conventions and guest spots at shops around the world.
Tattooing tends to be a male dominated field but you wouldn't know it by following Megan's career. She's been surrounded by support and positivity. Her diligence, drive and raw talent have gotten her to where she is today. In other words, she doesn't tattoo well in spite of being a girl; she tattoos well and is a girl. She inspires me. So I took the opportunity to ask her a few questions while she slid an ink soaked tattoo gun across my bicep.