We had the good fortune of connecting with Roman Toporov and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Roman, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
The decision did not come up easy for me. It took me a while to figure out what kind of person I am, or maybe even to accept what kind of person I am. I am not good at being a part of something corporate, following rules, having dress code etc. Instead, I always wanted to be in charge of my time and my schedule. Even thought it sometimes backfires, as very often I would overwork my self haha. Becoming a tattoo artist changed my life in a good way. Of course it brings some risks, but what I realized over the years is that I am a craftsman. That’s what I can be really good at. So I chose my craft, and never regretted it ever since. Being a tattoo artist gives me a luxury to be myself, and fulfills my passion to create art.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
While growing up I’ve always looked for ways how to express my individuality and creativity. So I guess I was just looking for the right medium. Every artist has their own touch, and I’m thankful and humbled that a lot of people can appreciate and enjoy my touch, and willing to get tattooed by me. It is a unique collaboration of my vision and my clients ideas, that I turn into tattoo designs. Being an artist is not easy, especially figuring out your medium and achieving certain level of success. Because no matter what you’re starting off, you can’t know if you’re going to succeed or fail. I took a risk when I decided to pursue a career of a tattoo artist, as I left my stable job and stepped into unknown. But I told to my self, that I have to give it a try or I will regret it forever. And it worked out. My main focus in my work is to create strong, harmonious, balanced and aesthetically pleasing designs. No matter how simple or complicated the task might seem. Some people call it perfectionism, and I agree with that. I guess my main strategy is not to become ‘hot’ or trendy, because trends come and go, but to be consistent and focus on quality and harmony.

Any great local spots you’d like to shoutout?
I do appreciate living in a big city and enjoying all the comforts that it provides with. But when I get a chance I always try to spend a good quality time out in nature. Since Southern California has such an amazing climate I would definitely take my friend to the ocean. Californian coast is one of the most beautiful places on earth. Another thing I love is hiking, and luckily there’s so many national parks and nature gems on the West coast.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My wife Sona is my everyday inspiration and motivation. She is always being there for me in my ups and downs. Always pushes me forward when I’m being lazy, or feeling petty about myself. She is a hard worker, and never gives herself excuses not to be productive.

Instagram: @romantattooing