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Updated: Mar 27, 2023

Meet Canton Tattoo Artist Zac Adams - Winner of the "Best of The Best" 2022 Tattoo Parlor Category

Cover photo by The Repository/Scott Heckel

The following is an excerpt from the Canton Repository. You can read the full story here.

Zac Adams serves as the managing member of The Inkeeper’s Tattoo Parlor in Canton.

He works with his girlfriend Lauren, and he has a 2-year-old daughter named Willow Jean. The family has a couple of snakes, a few dogs, and five cats. Adams graduated from Massillon’s Washington High School in 2006. He learned tattooing from different people around Massillon and developed a friendship with the artist who did his second tattoo.

“I became a permanent fixture in his apartment,” he said. “From store runs to making stencils and cleaning equipment, I was always around. From there, I found a real shop called Underground in Canton owned by Frank Ullman. He took me on as an apprentice for a short while showing me the ways of a professional. I quickly learned the huge difference between house tattooing and professional tattooing and decided right then I would pursue the legit route.”

It wasn’t long before his path led him to Sharp Images in Orrville, where he started seeing more of an artistic side of tattooing. He started to build up some clientele and ended up doing the first of many conventions.

“Arin [Hicks] had a great way of connecting with people and securing lifelong clients and loyal customers; something I try to emulate to this day,” Adams said.

He then moved to California and later North Carolina. In Holly Ridge, North Carolina, he started work at Atomic Wave and was introduced to Joe Wensil who was immersed in the history of tattooing. Wensil had transformed an old gas station outside of Camp Lejeune into a working tattoo museum. Adams said there were signed photos of the founders of modern tattooing: Bowery Stan Moskowitz, Paul Rogers, and Norman Keith Collins (a.k.a. Sailor Jerry) were just a few.

“Joe taught me the importance of working long days and staying late to make sure you didn’t ever let a paying customer leave without getting tattooed,” he said.

“I started taking on a lot more clientele and expanding my portfolio and meeting some killer artists around the city of Wilmington.”

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