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Thousands attend 13th annual Salt Lake City International Tattoo Convention

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Posted at 6:45 PM, Mar 06, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-06 20:45:03-05

SALT LAKE CITY – The Salt Lake City International Tattoo convention was underway this week, and FOX 13 photojournalist Darcy Stapleford brings us the sights and sounds of the convention.

The convention is in its 13th year, and the annual event attracts more than 150 tattoo artists from all over, while attendance usually tops 10,000. And, as the convention is growing, so is the average size of the art.

“People are getting bigger tattoos as their first tattoos,” said Ben Martinez of Good Times Tattoo.

Sharon Brouse, co-owner of A.S.I. Tatoo, added: “It's not just the 'mom' tattoo anymore, pigments are getting bolder and brighter.”

People get tattoos for many reasons, and there’s a huge variety in design.

“It’s a poker hand, dead man's hand,” one attendee said of the art he was having done.

Another attendee, Monica, describes her tattoo: “The elephant represents strength and wisdom.”

And many at the convention believe tattoos can be addicting.

“I want one on my neck, one on my forehead, I want it on the back of my hand,” said Dean Bodily, Co-owner of Lost Art Tattoo.

Martinez adds: “I’m covered, and my mom and my grandparents, still, [say] 'When are you going to stop?'”

After this weekend Utahns will have a little more ink. It might be painful, but, in the end, you have a masterpiece you can wear every day.

“It’s like looking at someone's soul on the outside,” said Jacob, who attended the event.