Szymon Gdowicz, who you may also know as Pain Ting, is an artist with very interesting background.

Before as he said ’’tattooing found him’’  he graduated from Art School in Katowice, worked in photographic studio in Poznan, was conservator-restorer, got a job in advertising agency as 2D/3D designer and also run painting and drawing course for beginners and intermediates to end up in Krakow’s Kult Tattoo due to surprising sets of the events.

’’ I like to be surprised by life, tattooing was one of those surprises. I didn’t plan it, this opportunity knocked on my door, it was enough just to open them. ’’

szymon gdowicz tattoo interview

Asked if he still has an urge to do something new, different  than tattooing or this is ‘’it’’ he answers.

‘’What I wrote on my Instagram profile is what I think describes me the best: ‚multimedia artist and tattoo artisan’’. Since I can remember I was always interested in intermedia, projects from different fields, styles or techniques. I don’t want to close myself to one form of expression, and I have already gone through some. To me, PainTing is the artistic project which I am currently running. It is difficult to say how long it is going to run for, maybe longer amount time maybe shorter, who knows? I don’t like to plan and say that this is what I am going to do for the rest of my life. ‘’

pain ting tattoo

You can see his past, interest in new media, film, photography, painting and art of tattooing in very courageous project ‘’Aleatorium’’.  

It also reflects on his work as a tattoo artist

‘’ I use a little bit of everything, every project is different and requires different solutions. Sometimes using computer is sufficient sometimes you have to hand make some elements. I also often use freehand to make sure tattoo perfectly blends with the body.’’

Aleatorium Pain Ting interview

Szymon was very lucky to start his career in Krakow’s Kult;

a studio full of unbelievable artists. Talent incubator but also organizers of the Tattoo Fest festival tattoo convention, clothing brand created by artists and tattoo magazine.

‘’Kult Tattoo Fest is mainly an excellent people, great atmosphere, great working environment and massive opportunities. Big respect to Radek, who gave me the chance to show up in this industry. The presence of known and recognizable artists gave me a massive kick to develop and improve my techniques. I am still learning, and ‘’kuznia kultu’’ (kult talent incubator) is the best place for it.”

Szymon likes intimacy between him and his clients.

He doesn’t like to rush and work under pressure. I put a lot of himself into his work, and he pushes for the best results that are only possible if his clients are open to ideas.

‘’ I think a good thing about this industry is that the style itself selects the customers that show up to get tattooed by me. I always try to talk to them at the beginning and see if we are on the same wavelength. It is crucial, comfort of work is much better then. Unfortunately, it happens that people show at the door with the ‚’I am the client so I demand ‚’ attitude. Unfortunately with this attitude are not going to get along. But if someone has an open mind, is keen to collaborate and can trust my experience – welcome on the chair! ‘

We recommend booking in with Pain Ting about a year in advance. Maybe his work is not the most mainstream style, but it still enjoys a massive popularity in Poland and all over the world. You can meet Pain Ting at the various tattoo conventions around the world.

Pain Ting tattoo interview


Little things in life. 

Despite the fact that tattooing and designing take up most of his time Szymon (when he is not a Pain Ting) tries to enjoy small things in life. Cycling, sports or traveling.

”I know it sounds prosaic but the older I get, the more I appreciate this ”little thing’’ which in fact are not ”little things’’. At times, I can accumulate some more energy to run a project such as Aleatorium. I hope there will be more of those in the future. ”

aleatorium szymon gdowicz

Asked about the reason behind Poland having so many Amazing artists he jokes:

” I think it is because if the long winter 😛 but seriously it ‘s hard to tell… I think we are simply lucky to have so many talented people who want to work, improve. The tattoo industry is getting bigger, and it is an excellent reason to be happy!”

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