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- Q&A -

Christian Tattoo Artists Jessi Lee

Fine Ink Studios- Winter Park

Winter Park, FL

14 years tattooing

Tattoo Style: I have a love for a lot of various styles in tattooing but specialize in color and cover-ups. with favorites being neo-traditional, watercolor and realism. I also love a realistic black and gray tattoo.

CTA: Go to music when you are

tattooing someone ?

Jessi : have a wide range of music styles I love, so it does depend on what I am feeling for the day but mainly will tattoo to Surfaces, reggae-rock, hip hop, 90s or Lacey Sturm/ Flyleaf and alt rock bands along those lines.

CTA: How did you get into tattooing?

Jessi: I really fell in love with art in high school and wanted to pursue it without worry of income, I didn't want to be an art teacher in a traditional classroom or soley do graphics. I landed on tattooing after researching it a bit and wanting to create daily. I couldn't find and apprentice in Pennsylvania and made the decision to move to Florida with a few friends to find one.

CTA: Did you have any Artists or people who influenced you that you would like to share, shout out?

Jessi : Ozzie, who gave me my start, Eddy and Tara who gave me tips and took me under their wing to help me move forward. Mike from DLG in Pennsylvania- when I felt stuck, he gave me a home to guest spot at, continued to help me grow my knowledge in the craft, as well as a good friend with advice that allowed me to navigate some challenging seasons in the industry.

Rick Barnett and his family. They created an outstanding environment for their studios, artists, and clients. He has mentored me in art and in business. Encouraged me to step out in faith, take risks, excelled my confidence and gave me the opportunity to own a location. He continues to mentor me in art, tattooing and business. 

Not artists but, my husband Mike, my family and my in-laws that have always supported me on this journey.

My pastors, Pastor Alex and Pastor Lauren of River Orlando Church, they have been mentors, spiritual leaders, friends and more. Because they have been so faithful to the call of God on their life and meet everyone with the love of God, my life has been forever changed by their leadership and ministry.

CTA: Share your Testimony...

Jessi : I grew up having a strong faith in God and Christ, not just because my parents raised me that way, but it was deeper than that. Unfortunately, because humans aren't perfect, eventually I was fed up with the church. I quit attending at about 16/17 years old. 

Fast forward to when I was 30. The past few years of my life leading up to that point, I struggled greatly with almost every aspect of adult life. My confidence was nonexistent, I had become detached from my once strong faith, my marriage was having struggles, my finances as well, I was high functioning anxious and depressed. I wasn't making the wisest choices. I was tired of attitudes in the industry, I was stuck. I was usually a happy and positive individual, but I couldn't shake the sadness and the unfulfilling people pleasing, or the feeling of "what's it all for?"

I still believed in Christ but at this point I didn't have a relationship with Him, wasn't reading the bible and pridefully thought I didn't need to. I just landed on that He was who I would meet in heaven and life on earth was a hot mess.

Where did my happiness go? Where did my positivity go? I would cry on the couch at night so hubby wouldn't hear me because I didn't want him to worry.

One day a friend invited me to his church (I wouldn't have met this friend without winning an expensive gym membership .... I never won anything mind you) This friend had no idea at the time the inner turmoil I was going through. I never really spoke of it much. I was a stuffer. Yet he was unrelenting anyway despite my every excuse not to go. I was tatted up with pink hair...I might as well have been a pariah; I did not want to go to a church. My husband knew I was wanting to reconnect to my faith and convinced me to go.

I remember being genuinely welcomed there. With my pink hair and tattoos. It wasn't the fake bullcrap welcoming I experienced so many times before. I was so surprised by the genuine warm hug I received from a total stranger to me.

That service the Pastor spoke on the importance of where you work and why. He talked of how if we are in the wrong place, it can weigh on us spiritually and heavily and we may not know why. I had goosebumps all over and I knew God meant that message for me. 

A few weeks later after much stubbornness on my part I knew I needed to quit. It was hard, I had no back up plan, I lost a friend that day. I sobbed in my car in the hot Florida summer "Jesus, take the f***** wheel because I am tired of f***** up my life." That was my cry out prayer. F bombs and all. But that is one of the many beautiful things about the Lord. No matter how messy we are, He knows our heart and He meets us in that place.

That week I went to the same church, River Orlando Church, and answered the altar call for prayer and to reinvite Jesus into my heart. Pastor Alex placed his hand on my shoulder to pray for me and knew EVERYTHING. I never even had a conversation with him at this point. No one knew those things. He spoke of all the things I was struggling with, all the things I would tell myself, how I felt for a long time, word for word. Then he spoke of all God said I was and how loved I was. In that moment a tangible physical weight, that I wasn't aware had been there, left my heart. I physically felt it leave. Then an overwhelming wave of the greatest love I ever felt came rushing in. I had a supernatural encounter with the Holy Spirit that day. It leveled me, it renewed me, it healed my heart, it permanently changed me in ways words could never fully explain. It was Jesus. 

From that moment I dove deep into the things of God. My marriage changed; our finances changed. Everything in my life began to improve as I made the decision to walk with God and apply His word in my life. I have stumbled, I'm not perfect, there have been obstacles to overcome but His love, grace, strength and mercy abounds. I can't even begin to count all the blessing and testimonies that have happened in my life since. God is real. Jesus is Lord and He is the way truth and life, and He loves you!

There have been many times I have been able to share my testimony and the Lord with clients, family, friends, apprentices, my team etc. It's not always easy, as tattooing can require we be extremely focused on the task at hand. But I always ask the Lord that if there is an opportunity His words be on my mouth and for Him to let me see people how He sees them. You never know what someone is going through, and they need to hear about how much Jesus loves them and who He is and that they are fearfully and wonderfully made by God. Yes, we need to preach heaven and hell but we can't leave out His love. Its His love that draws men to repentance. Truth without love is just a noisy gong and clanging cymbal. 

CTA: Any last words of encouragement , favorite verses you would like to share?

Jessi :

Matthew 5:16 Therefore let your light shine before men, so they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.

John 8:36 Who the Son sets free, is free indeed. 

John 1: 1-5 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

If you looking to get a tattoo and in the Winter Park, FL area please reach out to Jessi and support her and her Tattoo shop. You can find more info about her on instagram @jessileeartist.

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