A lot of things went wrong when I started tattooing, but that is what made me stronger…
This is a story of a Student-turned-Mentor-turned-Director of Aliens Tattoo and the Dean of Aliens Tattoo Art School, Allan Gois! Allan's journey is quite phenomenal, to say the least. But life wasn't always rainbows & sunshine for him. There were many ups & downs, getting lost along the way and eventually finding his way back to who he was destined to be.
Allan was a good kid. However, he was an average student when it came to academics because he was never very enthusiastic about studying. But on the other hand, he always enjoyed drawing. He would watch shows like art attack & MAD and try to recreate the stuff made on the show. He even helped his classmates complete their drawing assignments. His dad remembers little Allan drawing on his grandfather's arm, which he proudly showed off to everyone.
Although Allan wasn’t good at studies, his elder sister pushed him to study hard throughout his SSC board exams, and he ended up getting a good score. As a result, his mother and sister insisted that he continue his education beyond high school. But he was well aware that conventional career options weren’t for him. His father, however, encouraged him to take time to figure out what he really enjoyed. During all this, people came and gave their (2 cents/opinions) about what he should do, but nobody asked him what he wanted & Allan himself wasn't sure about it. Through it all, there was one constant support - his dad! In fact, he was the one who knew his inclination was towards art & pushed him to pursue the same. He stumbled upon an advertisement for an animation course in the newspaper, and Allan showed some interest. The next thing they were in Dadar, enrolling him for the animation course. Even while he was completing his animation course, his mother really insisted that he should at least finish his higher secondary education. Finally, he caved in and decided to do it just for the sake of doing it. When reaching there and waiting in the queue, he realised that this was not what he wanted to be. He wanted to be something different. He didn't want to do what everyone else was doing, as no one achieved anything out of the ordinary solely due to their education.
"I saw all these people running from one window to another for their admissions, and then it struck me, I don't want this. I want to be different. So I went back home."
He returned home having made a firm decision not to continue his studies.
While he was completing the animation course, he happened to go on this vacation with his friends to Goa. His friends decided to go to a local tattoo studio and they all ended up getting tattoos. Allan closely observed the whole process and it intrigued him. After returning home, he spent days at home, doing nothing. So when one of his friends was visiting Allan, his dad urged him to look for a job for Allan. Knowing how good Allan was at drawing, he suggested why not let him try tattoo art since they had recently seen how interesting it was and how much demand it had. So they rushed off to search for the best tattoo places in Mumbai & came across a myriad of options. But out of all of them, Aliens did stand out. His friend loved the Shiva tattoos done by the founder, Sunny Bhanushali back then at Aliens Tattoo & decided that this was the place to be.
They then visited the Aliens Studio in Versova & enrolled Allan, and luckily for him, Sunny Bhanushali was in the Studio. He was with one of his friends and client, who had a customised realistic tattoo on his arm. He was mesmerised by the art.
Initially, Allan wanted to learn to tattoo to make some money out of it. It was just a source of quick money. However, things changed during the course.
"It was a portrait tattoo. I saw the whole tattooing process & was stunned to see such a portrait-level tattoo being executed on skin. That's when I decided that this is what I want to do."
This was the moment his perception changed from learning how to tattoo for quick money and he found something to focus on. He found a passion. The rest, as they say, is history. Today, Allan is one of best realism tattoo artists in the world, a lead artist and director at Aliens Tattoo and the dean of Aliens Tattoo Art School.
Here is what Allan says about his journey and what he wants people to learn from his experience,
"When I started getting better at my art, money followed. People recognised me. I built my portfolio, gained fame, tattooed celebrities like Hardik Pandya, and got my name published in a famous magazine. All of this happened because I chased my passion & not money. Had I chased money, I would've earned that, but that's it. I would've been stuck with just that.
If your child says that they want to be a dancer, or an actor, or say a tattoo artist, then you must listen to them because only some know what they really want. And if you follow your passion, money follows. So I think it's really important that parents let their kids follow their passion. My dad trusted me and had the confidence in me to let me do what my heart wanted. Today, I am proud & satisfied, as I am more than a tattoo artist. I am a contributor to this industry."