Ben Shaw ~ Archetype ~ Tattoo Industry Advocate & Speaker

About Ben Shaw

Ben Shaw is a licensed tattoo artist of more than 22 years. With a passion for tattooing, he works to promote prosperity within his industry through public speaking, education, and charity.

Ben is the owner of Archetype Tattoo in Albuquerque, NM and the former chairman of the New Mexico board of body art practitioners.

He is currently an APT (Alliance of Professional Tattooists) board member and Chair for the APT Pigment Committee, working to navigate the upcoming new federal law MOCRA (modernization of cosmetic regulation act).

Ben is also a member of the AFDO (association of food and drug officials) body art committee, a member of NEHA (national environmental health association) Body Art model code committee, and a member of the ESTP (European society of tattoo and pigment research).

He is an industry advocate, fighting for safe tattooing and against over-regulation.


From a childhood full of drawing in the influence of his father’s biker lifestyle, Ben knew at an early age what he wanted to do for his career. So at the age 16, he got his first professional tattoo and honed in on his artistic talents. By age 20, he started his apprenticeship. Since then Ben’s body is now 70% covered with body art and his tattoo style includes a little bit of everything, like any seasoned professional portfolio should. He specializes in large-scale black and gray realism and Japanese tattooing. His goal? To build an evolution within the tattoo industry.

Ben Shaw ~ Archetype ~ Tattoo Industry Advocate
Ben Shaw ~ Archetype ~ Tattoo Industry Advocate


Undoubtedly, a mentoring and entrepreneurial spirit has been the cornerstone of Ben’s career. His work with Toastmasters laid the foundation for him to be a voice for his community. Now, he use the power of public speaking to further his advocacy work for safe tattooing practices. For young aspiring artists, Ben helps them find optimal apprenticeship programs to ensure they’re in the Tattoo trade for the right reasons. In turn, he encourages them to build their own clientele with what they’ve learned skill wise and ethics wise. Above all, tattoos are an important form of expression. The integrity of their artist is just as vital.


A major milestone of Ben’s career was spearheading the state approved Board Of Body Art Practitioners through the Senate Bill 275. In fact, Ben sat on the New Mexico Board Of Barbers and cosmetologist as the only tattoo artist and recognize the immense need for proper regulations specific to the tattoo industry. As a result, the Board Of Body Art Practitioners was founded. The board monitors licensure of tattoo artist, guiding expectations of cleanliness and professionalism within the Tattoo industry.

Ben retired from his position as a chairman for the Board Of Body Art Practitioners in 2019, but currently sits on the Board’s rules committee. Additionally, what started as a simple cooperative venture expended into a lasting impact in his community; the Guild of ethical tattooist. As a co-founder, Ben oversaw a union of artists and advocated for the much-needed regulations of ethical tattooing practices.

Ben was also the host for Art Fusion for a Cause founded by his own studio, Archetype Tattoo. The art event brought local artists Together to raise thousands of dollars for nonprofit organizations. Ben is now active with the Tattoo Smart platform, Launchpad. Ultimately, he’s becoming a tattoo industry advocate, helping artist from around the country and world, navigate tattoo regulations, as well as be a voice to stop over regulation and inspire safe tattooing.