Alex AL Apilando

Skin Design Tattoo Artist

Tattoo Artist
Located In Honolulu

Alex Apilando Tattoo Artist

ALOHA, my name is Alex “AL” Apilando. Born and raised in beautiful Hawaii. Growing up in a strong Hawaiian cultured household, Ohana (family) meant everything to me. I come from a very humbled upbringing. Youth life taught us that sometimes it’s necessary to sacrifice the things we “want” in order to work for the things we “need”. Now as a Husband and Father, I live by those morals day in and day out. The unconditional love and support I get from Ohana fuels me to be the best Artist I can be. Without them this journey would not be possible.

Small kid time (at a young age) art has been a big part of my life.

My older brother was known as the “artist” of the family. He spent hours perfecting his art, even if it meant redrawing it 20 times. We drew different styles but I often found myself mimicking his work ethic and pursuit of perfection. From elementary all the way throughout high school all I wanted was to draw. People around me took notice and constantly asked me to draw for them. After high school, tattoos were everywhere, so naturally some of my closest friends asked me to design theirs. Seeing my work permanently on people intrigued me. So much so that I almost became consumed by the art form and culture.

2009 December, I received a “tattoo kit” as a gift. I had to watch a video to learn how to tattoo a small star on my thigh. Although it was exciting and new, I immediately felt torn because this wasn’t how I wanted to pursue tattooing. One day, after months went by of it collecting dust in the closet, I decided to attempt covering up the star myself. When people saw the cover up on my thigh, I got convinced to tattoo a few cousins and friends. I usually shied away or turned down their request because I didn’t have the confidence I’d pull it off. Even though it turned out decent, I still knew I was missing out on the correct guidance.

2011 was my first introduction to the industry. I was introduced to a local Artist (whom I regard as my “Mentor”). Quickly I was drawn to him, his work and his experience. For a few years I’d go to his “appointment only studio” every chance I got, watching him tattoo for hours asking questions and retaining as much information as I could. Even with the many answers and lessons he bestowed on me, we felt I would benefit working at a walk-in friendly shop.

2014 I had the privilege of being an apprentice for a very reputable tattoo shop. I remember being overwhelmingly eager to get to work. Being able to observe multiple artists and their styles influenced my work drastically. The next couple of years felt like it flew by. I went from being “Shop Apprentice” to “Tattoo Artist” in the blink of an eye. The amount of personal accomplishments and experiences I’ve obtained within five years have been nothing short of astonishing to me.

2019 joining the Skin Design Tattoo (SDT) Hawaii Team is an absolute chance of a lifetime. I am constantly amazed at the level of professionalism and the overall structure of the (SDT) brand. Here TEAM is strongly emphasized to elevate each other as individual artists but more so to leave our (SDT) imprint for all our past present and future clients. The first time I got a glimpse of Robert Pho’s work I was mind boggled. Now I have the priceless opportunity to be able to learn from and work along side him daily. I am beyond appreciative and honored to be able to contribute to the future of SKIN DESIGN TATTOO HAWAII.

If you’re interested starting a consultation with
Alex AL Apilando please feel free to contact us.

Alex's Instagram