NEW Big Sleeps T-Shirt Available Now


The New Big Sleeps T-Shirt is Available Now

Big Sleeps, Los Angeles based tattoo lettering king, has designed a new shirt for Bishop Rotary. We have these shirts available now on our websites in Small – 3XL so get yours now before they are done.




Check out Big Sleeps Website

About Big Sleeps

“The writing’s on the wall,” is a cliché that simply refers to an inevitable conclusion, or an
obvious ending. For those who live on the edge in the aerosol-covered inner city areas of urban
sprawl, life often reflects a much more tragic inevitability; leaving behind a trail of lost souls
immortalized through candlelit curbside memorials and tribute t-shirts. One wayward child of
the ghetto destined to follow this unfortunate path was Los Angeles artist Big Sleeps. Luckily
for him, the inevitable fate he was headed towards became quite different and anything but
tragic. Unbeknownst to the aspiring artist at the time, he was to transcend and translate these
urban writing styles of his childhood neighborhoods to the rest of the world, becoming an
ambassador for the many fallen concrete calligraphers who never survived the rough canvases of
Los Angeles they painted on. Big Sleeps is truly a survivor in every sense of the word, and the
streets that nearly swallowed him whole remain bound by intricate, spray-painted letter styles
which act as a code of survival called “the placa,”− a localized from of graffiti writing found
on neighborhood walls, park benches, bus stops, and fences. It is self expression in the most
territorial sense, and while it serves many purposes to those who live amongst these writings,
it served more as a silent mentor and inspiration for Sleeps, who absorbed the intoxicating
perfection found in the carefully stylized scripts. “My influences came from the stuff I saw
growing up,” he says. I think my whole life was an influence in a way. Seeing everything around
me on walls, fences, and buildings just walking to school, it just motivated me to try to make
my art; I find beauty in different shit.” Stints behind bars couldn’t even deter the young artist’s
obsession as even without a can or a pen, Sleeps would find himself perfecting these styles with
his finger in the air; obsessing over the creation and perfection of new lettering styles − even if
he was without the resources to properly do so.

Fast forward to today and the second chapter of life is in full swing for Big Sleeps, having finally
shed the troublesome trials and tribulations of his neighborhood upbringing. After receiving his
introduction to the world of tattooing in the late ‘80’s, Sleeps has since come into his own as
one of the culture’s most well respected artists; earning him stints with Lowrider Tattoo, Will
Rise Tattoo, and Modern Ink, to name a few. He’s collaborated with a slew of well-respected
artists and companies including Sullen, OG Abel, Boog, Norm, Slick and Dissizit in a variety
of critically acclaimed and commercially successful mediums. His third book, “Neighborhood
Offerings,” a joint documentation of placa street styles Sleeps put together with his mentor
and street legend, Prime, has even been picked up at the Getty Research Institute, where it sits
alongside hieroglyphics and ancient parchment scrolls in a further exploration of mankind’s
intrinsic need to express itself. Big Sleeps also garnered a 10-page spread in Bound By Ink
Magazine, where he opened up about his career, upbringing, influences, and how he coped
with the loss of his mother. In September of 2012, his hand-painted skate decks were displayed
alongside mentor and fellow K2S crew member, Jose “Prime” Reza, at the Plaza De La Raza’s
Boathouse Gallery for a show sponsored by the Baurmann Gallery.

These days it would seem as though the time he once had too much of behind bars has now
become a scarce commodity, as Big Sleeps’ appointment calendar remains full with projects,
appointments, and collaborations, all furthering his career as an artist. While Sleeps is working
hard to earn his artistic stripes, his passport is collecting stamps as travels to tattoo in places like
Copenhagen and Amsterdam, spreading the gospel of the placa worldwide. Rather than speak
about his own exploits, the accomplished artist is quick to salute those who came before him and
those that inspire him to succeed; artists like Prime, Defer, and Cricket, as well as his musically-
inclined peers Sick Jacken and Big Duke of the Psycho Realm, whom he credits for schooling
him in business etiquette while giving him his first break in artistic design.

Despite his newfound worldwide perspective, Sleeps maintains a humble, community-based
mindset, speaking to local Los Angeles at-risk youth and working with Second Chance,
a company which works with Homeboy Industries to give rehabilitated former prisoners
employment opportunities. Though he lost his mother to cancer before she could see him
blossom into the artist he is today, Sleeps is steadied by his girl and his family, respected by
his peers, adored by his customers, and poised to continue his upward flight into the clouds
of creativity and the annals of contemporary art. His is a tale of redemption, and it is certainly
poetic justice that the man who once saw the alleys of his neighborhood as his only artistic
refuge now sees the entire world as his canvas.