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

Hi Jess, what inspires you?
First and foremost, I’m inspired by the other talented and driven artists in my industry. It takes years of hard work and dedication to gain the recognition some the top artists in my field have. Their drive and the evolution of their work is so inspiring, and it helps me objectively look at my own growth and appreciate how hard I’ve worked to get to where I am today. And thankfully I have a team of incredibly kind, talented, and motivated women who push me to reach higher and be the best artist and teammate that I can be. We have a very collective atmosphere that allows for anyone to bring new ideas to the table, as well as provides the opportunity to have another artist’s feedback in the creative process. I truly wouldn’t be where I am today without my team.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I’m a cosmetic tattoo artist, and I specialize primarily in hyperrealistic eyebrows and eyeliner. When I was a newer artist, and what I still see in many new artists, is striving to create these absolutely crisp and clean, perfect eyebrows. And while that’s certainly impressive, the result wasn’t always the most natural looking. As an artist, I started to shift away from the style that I was taught which was more perfect, and focus instead on developing my own style in which the goal was to have the results be “undetectable”. The thing is the tattoo is already “fake”. And sometimes if the brows are too perfect, too patterned, and too dense, then they’re so easy to clock from across the room as being clearly tattooed. I find that the real beauty of eyebrow tattooing is in the negative space, and the ability to blend my work into the existing hair so you can’t tell which ones are real and which are fake. My style is so much more artistic and subtle, and I think that’s why my clients choose to trust me with their face. In terms of my business as a whole, I can honestly say that starting a business was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done in my life. If you don’t pour your heart and soul and every penny you can spare into it, you won’t make it. I’m so proud of where I am today. I went from working alone for 12 hours a day in a tiny dark room with no windows in the basement of a weird building, to working alongside an inspiring group of talented and driven women in a beautiful storefront salon that is everything I’ve ever dreamed of. Our clients trust that we’re going to take care of them because we take the time to understand their goals and then work with them to achieve them.

If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I always take my friends to Boulder to hike Mount Sanitas and South Boulder Peak. Sanitas is a decent hike in terms of a workout, but it’s short enough that I feel like the out-of-towners can handle it. South Boulder Peak is a really cool hike that takes about 3.5 hours. There’s a spot if you go up through the shadow canyon that feels like your suddenly in the rainforest – the temperature and humidity changes and I swear the plants look more lush. It’s wild. Then after, one of my go-to brunch spots is Lucile’s when I’m feeling that comfort cajun cuisine. They have amazing authentic entrees, their biscuits are so good with their homemade jams, and their beignets are almost as good as Cafe Du Monde’s in New Orleans. I also really like Tangerine for breakfast or brunch. Super fresh and tasty and their lattes are really good. My friends are big into climbing, so I usually take them to the Movement RiNo location which is a huge bouldering gym in Denver. It’s great to hang out and socialize while also getting a good workout in. It’s attached to the Improper City collective that’s a really fun place to hangout. They have a full bar inside, and there’s always people getting rowdy even on a weeknight. What makes it cool is the outdoor area with the fake grass, yard games, and fire pits. It’s a place you can bring kids and dogs and grab a bite from one of their rotating food trucks. It’s a great vibe.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Two people immediately come to mind – Emily Geubelle was my first artist to complete the apprenticeship program. She’s been handed a lot of tough situations, especially at the start of her tattoo career, and I really believe my business would have gone under if she hadn’t come into my life at the moment that she did. She has never refused a request, or shied away from a challenge. She has always given me her honest feedback, and has somehow stuck with me these last few years. There truly is no one in this world like her, and I can’t imagine Boulder Brows without her as a part of our shop family. She’s one of the pillars that makes Boulder Brows what it is, and I hope that she knows that. Jesse Goodrich is the second name that came to mind. He was my partner during the genesis of Boulder Brows. When I told him I wanted to quit my 9 to 5 job at Boulder Community Hospital, go to esthetics school, learn how to do cosmetic tattoos, and open an eyebrow salon, I half expected him to laugh and say I was crazy (which arguably I’d say it still sounds ridiculous). But he NEVER doubted me for a second, saying “If you believe there’s a need for it, and that you can do it, then I believe you can too.” He always genuinely encouraged me, and I poured my heart and soul into getting my business off the ground, at the expense of our relationship. He just loved and supported me every step of the way. He’s still one of my dearest friends, and still continues to love and support me.

Website: http://www.boulderbrows.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/boulderbrows/

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/boulderbrows

Image Credits
Smiling Eyes Photo

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutColorado is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.