Clark North’s belief is clear; “It is important for the artist to find new ways to show the strongest and most repeated archetypal themes, as they are deeply linked to human psyche and will always be important to express the door to the soul. Clark has been Honoring Horimono, one of the oldest forms of the decorative tattoo, he has mastered Design, Flow, Concept, Composition and Form through his drawing and painting for a half century. He brings all his skill together for the art that Clark practices today; deeply connected to the history and style of the Traditional Japanese Tattoo style. Although the decorative tattoo has been in America for just over 100 years - the Native Americans practiced tattoo forms long before the advent of Europeans. Tattooing existed in ancient Europe as documented in records from early Roman historians that show that the Gauls, Goths, and Teutons all from North Western Europe were all heavily tattooed. It was brought back into vogue in Europe and America during 18th Century (the 1700's) oceanic tours of Captain Cook rekindling the royalty of England and the upper positioned American military who wore tattooing in a like manner of the chiefs of the Maori from New Zealand and other chieftains of Oceanic cultures, they were brought home to Europe by Captain Cook. Large-scale full body suits that are of one complete thought or Mythological heroic story illustration were specifically in the realm of the Japanese. The imagery came primarily from Chinese literature, Introduced during the Tokugawa Shogunate has its true beginning in 19th century Japan (the 1800's). It has completely revolutionized the tattoo concepts of the modern western world much like Japanese ukiyo-e art, causing the evolution of the impressionist and fauvist painters’ movement in 19th Century Europe. This Japanese ukiyo-e referenced horimono style, along with Clark’s unique visionary style has led to his body of work. Clark has tried to tap the unconscious memory of all of the world’s most powerful symbols and use of them is at the core of his work.
Spending all your creative time making paintings of display design sheets, or as it is commonly known in the tattoo trade, as “flash” is an important part of a professional tattooists life. There are many techniques brought forward from the early part of the 20th century tattoo traditions. One is known as ” spit shading” so called because artists would use saliva to spread the black ink across the image, they would also stain the pages with coffee or tea, finishing the color with watercolor which best represents the look of a tattoo in skin. Although the look of his work is heavily influenced by this tradition he sometime uses modern materials such as acrylic paints, tempura, watercolor, gouache and ink to achieve the final look, and to bring it closer to the interpretation of his creative urge.