As one of the founding principles of Diego Tattoo, inclusivity and acceptance has always been a vital part of our company, especially when it comes to the LGBTQ+ community. Diego Tattoo is LGBTQ+ owned and operated, with more than 80% of our staff being a part of this community in some way. We believe in creating a safe, inviting, and loving space for anyone to be able to feel free to be themselves. What better time to celebrate this kind of love and inclusivity than during Pride month? We jump at any excuse to celebrate and lift up our LGBTQ+ friends, clients, and coworkers, while recognizing the importance of creating a safe and non-hostile space amongst much of the hatred we see in this country today.
Why is it important to create a safe environment in a tattoo shop?
Getting a tattoo is undoubtedly a vulnerable experience, and there have been countless stories of people going into a tattoo shop only to be made to feel uncomfortable, taken advantage of, harassed, judged, or just generally mistreated. While these stories have become a norm in much of the tattoo culture of the past, we strive to be a driving force to make a pivotal change in the community. Through our actions, we hope to show our clients and friends that we see them, accept them, and treat them well.
Diego Tattoo is founded on ideals of compassion, encouragement, and inclusivity, not ego or competition. We take pride in the relationships we’ve built between the other artists and our clients and understand that half of the tattoo experience is the way you feel while you’re there at the shop.
How do we make a difference in our community?
Giving back to the community is a tangible way of making a difference and being able to see this difference in action. In November of 2018 we hosted a tattoo fundraiser to assist those that were affected by Hurricane Maria, and in April of 2017 we co-hosted a fundraiser for Planned Parenthood when their federal funding was in jeopardy. We have also raised funds for those affected by Hurricane Michael and hand delivered supplies to the area. We have worked closely with pet rescues, hosting fundraising and art events to help animals in need in San Diego. We are committed to giving back to the very community that has enabled us to thrive as artists.
Love and positive change come through awareness and action. Whether it’s through asking someone’s pronouns, posting a picture of a tattoo done on a person of color, displaying art created by someone in the LGBTQ+ community, or simply sharing your own story, there are small but important steps we can take in our day-to-day to ensure that we are fighting for what’s good and right.