Up In Arms Tattoo

Dean Graves, left, owner of Up In Arms Tattoo, and tattoo artist Manny Lopez are shown in front of the shop in the 200 block of East Ocean Avenue. Graves, who also works for Lockheed Martin, got into the business three years ago when he bought the Thin Line Tattoo Company.

Name: Dean Graves

Business: Up In Arms Tattoo

Location: 206 E. Ocean Ave.

Phone: 736-5500

Hours: 1 to 9 p.m. every day

What products and services do you offer? We offer a clean healthy environment where we produce good custom body art.

Who are your customers? We have a lot of clientele from the military base. And we have a lot of local people as well. People come from all over the Central Coast. 

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How many people do you employ? We have two tattoo artists, Manny Lopez and Javier Castanon, plus an available piercer.

How long have you been in business? I have been in business for three years.

How did you get into this business? I was involved with small business when I was growing up. My father had a wholesale dairy distributorship. He sold dairy products to stores. I always wanted to do a small business but it never really happened. I work for Lockheed Martin. I heard by word of mouth that the Thin Line Tattoo Company was for sale. So this came up and I thought I would take a stab at it.  It kind of just happened.

What do you like most about owning your own business? Always learning new aspects of business. I like all forms of art, music, sculpture and painting. I like the clientele that comes in here from all walks of life, rich and poor.

What do you find most challenging about owning this business? It’s a challenge to always be more organized, to get the word out, and find different ways to advertise our product. Staying up with changes in the economy, in art, and so forth is a challenge.

What do you do in your spare time? I am mostly busy. When I have time, I spend it with my wife and children. My hobby is saltwater fishing.

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If you would like to be featured in this column or suggest someone to be featured, contact Frank Young at thats-30@youngreport.com.