Just as Mary Shelley's Dr. Frankenstein brought a monster to the world he would later regret (same goes for the guy who invented Labradoodles), Ed Sheeran's tattoo artist is coming to terms with the beastly creations he has wrought upon society. In this case, it's not a murderous green guy or cute but problem-riddled dog he brought to life, but rather the pop star's terrible collection of tattoos.
Sheeran's tattoos are notoriously bad, and British tattoo artist Kevin Paul, the man behind the ink, agrees. In an interview with the UK's Daily Mirror, Paul admitted that Sheeran's tats are "shit." He added, "I agree with most of it, his tattoos aren't very good."
Paul is responsible for more than 40 of Sheeran's tragic-looking pieces, and while he says he "takes the piss out of Ed all the time" about the tattoos, apparently every needle-drop of ink that lands on the "Shape of You" singer's bod is personal. That giant, crayon-drawn-looking lion on his chest? It's dedicated to Sheeran selling out Wembley Stadium. As for the faded gecko on his forearm, the Heinz ketchup bottle, the gingerbread man, the Fresh Prince logo, the toxic three-eyed fish from The Simpsons, and the Pingu he shares with Harry Styles, they also have some significance. According to Paul, "And it does look shit but it's what they wanted, it's a personal memory and it means something to them."
Paul admits that his infamously terrible tattoos on Sheeran have cost him some clients, and maybe some clout. "It definitely changed things, I was a big massive artist doing 3D-work and winning multi awards. And then all of a sudden you end up doing Pingu the Penguin and fucking gingerbread men on pop stars," he told the Daily Mirror.
Even so, he said inking the ginger singer has opened much bigger doors for him. So, no ragrets.