Although he had a passion for art and had been drawing for most of his life, it actually took an unfortunate event for Noah Kilsdonk to head down a path towards life as not only a tattoo artist, but also as an entrepreneur.
“I was working construction and got injured on a job site,” said Kilsdonk. “I had to have reconstructive shoulder surgery in 2001 and it was bad enough where I had to find other kinds of work to do.”
That started Kilsdonk on a path towards MSUM where he got into the art program, but ultimately, he dropped out once he got his tattoo apprenticeship. The rest is history as Kilsdonk would eventually drop construction altogether (which he did part-time alongside tattooing through 2009) and open up No Coast Tattoo in 2013 alongside his co-founders.
“I really like the diversity of work. I like the clientele,” said Kilsdonk who says his work is inspired by tattooing pioneers Norman Collings, August Coleman, Bert Grimm and Amund Dietzel. “You can tattoo something on someone that you see as insignificant but it’s the most significant thing for them. It could be the smallest thing like their grandmother’s handwriting on their wrist and they will be just as happy with the end results as a client who’s getting a full back piece done. That’s very fulfilling.”
When you talk to Kilsdonk, you can tell that his passion for tattooing runs deep. He even considers himself a student of the history of tattooing.
“I really enjoy the history of tattooing and it’s interesting to see how it has progressed in our culture,” said Kilsdonk.
No Coast Tattoo
513 3rd Ave N, Fargo
“I specialize in Americana traditional, modern traditional and Japanese traditional. I also specialize in coverups and reworks.”Noah Kilsdonk