Interview: Ian Griffith Talks Tattooing the Miami Heat Logo on Rick Ross' Face and Working With Meek Mill

Rick Ross and Meek Mill's tattoo artist talks working with the MMG team.

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Image via Complex Original
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Rick Ross got the Miami Heat logo tattooed on his face last week, because that's what real fans do. The rapper stopped by the Unroyal Ink tattoo shop in New Jersey, where he got three new pieces of art on his visage. But it turns out, the visit wasn't necessarily planned. We spoke to the artist, Ian Griffith, who did Ross' new ink about how he started working with the MMG team. Spoiler: It has everything to do with Meek Mill

Oh, and just so you know—while Ross may not have gotten a pear tattoo, he is still very much about that RossFit and worked out in between ink sessions. Yup. 

How did you start working with Rick Ross?

I've been tattooing Meek [Mill] for a couple of weeks now, since he's been released. [Ross] was in Philly visiting Meek and came through. He said he wanted to get a bit of work done, so I ended up doing the [Dreamchasers] logo above his eye. He liked it so much that he wanted to get a couple of other tattoos. From there, we just kept working. I’m actually on the road with him right now traveling with him. He wanted me to come with him and keep tattooing him.

What other tattoos did Rick Ross ask for?

I did the Rolex. I redid all the tattoos on his face—the crosses. I did the Miami Heat logo from scratch, the Rolex logo, and the [Dreamchasers] logo. But I redid them all. I tattooed his whole face.

He wanted to go straight to the face, without hesitation, and I said, "Let’s get it because tattooing is what I do.” When someone like Rick Ross asks you to do something, you respect his request and you just do what you know how to do best.

Let's talk about Meek Mill for a second. How long have you been tattooing him?

I started tattooing Meek five days after he got released from prison.

What are some of the stuff you've done for him?

 I did the [Dreamchasers] logo, I did the MMG logo on his hand. He has another piece on his chest that I did.

What did Rick Ross say to you about wanting the Miami Heat logo tattooed on his face? 

He said he’s a huge Heat fan, that’s his team. So he wanted to represent for his team. He’s a Heat fan for life.

You posted a photo of Ross lifting weights at the shop. Tell me about that. 

He was doing that in between sessions. We’d sit down and work a little bit, take a little break cause you know Ross is doing his CrossFit, RossFit now, getting in shape. So he’d be in there doing that.

Have you tattooed any other celebrities?

I tattoed Vinny Curry from the [Philadelphia] Eagles. I tattooed Chino MMG, but this is pretty much the top tier for me. But like I said, Ross got me on the road with him right now.

I tattooed Marshawn Brooks when he played on the Celtics. He had taken me out to Boston last year. I stayed with him for a couple of weeks. I did his whole chest. He had me taken to the game. I did his chest, but not basketball-related. It was more religious.

Do you know what Ross has planned for his next tattoo?

We’re working on a lot of different things. I’ll keep you posted on that.

Check out more of Ian Griffith's work here

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