~ 2 min read
SKULL & DAGGER
For this limited edition collaboration, we teamed up with famous London tattoo artist and illustrator Delphin Musquet, aka Deal With Dolphin.
Here we explore the
inspiration behind his fine line Skull & Dagger design.
Originally from Bordeaux, Delphin began tattooing out of necessity: when he arrived in London he wanted a tat but couldn't afford one at the time. Instead, he borrowed a friend’s tattoo gun and just started having fun.
"I couldn't even draw," he tells us, when we catch up in East London to shoot our latest collaboration, pointing to the blue stickman on his left knee that endures as a reminder of those early days.
"I was like a little kid trying to learn, just having fun. But it went pretty well so my friends just asked me for more and it grew from there."
Five years since his first tat, Delphin's creative flair has carried him across continents, from LA's renowned Downtown districts to London's hipster East End.
Now working out of Dalston's iconic Sang Bleu studio, Delphin takes pride in making all his ink-work bespoke, conjuring creations from a vivid imagination spent exploring the globe.
"I only do tattoos once. I never do a design twice," Delphin says. "Every one is bespoke. If I draw for myself or a flash I’ll find inspiration from books or naturally from my head.
"I have a vivid imagination. Today I just opened my sketchbook and drew," he says, casually sketching an eagle with the Mechanical Pen. "It’s hard to run out of ideas. You just have to look around yourself and you will find inspiration."
For our limited edition collaboration, Delphin recreated a traditional skull and dagger tattoo, in his unique fine line style.
"My favourite design is to draw skulls and daggers. I'm trying to push my work. I'm trying to refine what I'm doing and get inspiration from old, traditional tattoos and the era of French prison tattoos from the beginning of the 20th century."
While the pandemic has hampered Delphin's ability to work in recent months, it's also freed him up to develop his style. "I would recommend anyone to learn and apply the lesson this pandemic teaches them," he says.
As soon as things improve, Delphin's first journey will be across The Pond to his spiritual home in Los Angeles. "I'm generally inspired by people who are more successful than me and in terms of places, it's America," he says.
"For their work ethic, they are just incredible. The whole idea of making money is so productive. You have to survive in America and this philosophy really works for me. If I'm ever lacking in motivation, I'll go there for a month and come back completely inspired."
The Wingback X Delphin Musquet limited edition collaboration is available with our Mechanical Pen in stainless steel
and Winston Wallet in whisky
. Shop the collection here
Photos by Josh Moore/Lawless Studio.