ACALA [ah-kah-lah] is a dharmapala (wrathful deity) primarily revered in Vajrayana Buddhism, particularly in Tangmi in Japan, China and elsewhere. The Sanskrit symbol that represents Acala is hāṃ हां, in Japanese he is known as Fudō-Myō-O 不動明王. Both names translate to "immovable" in their respective languages. He is classed amongst the Wisdom Kings and preeminent among the Five Wisdom Kings (the five "Myō-O Brothers") of the Womb Realm. Accordingly, his figure occupies an important hierarchical position in the pictorial diagramatic Mandala of the Two Realms. In Japan, Acala/Fudō is revered in Shingon Buddhism, Tendai, Zen, Nichiren Buddhism and in Shugendō.
Why Acala? He is a very popular traditional subject in both Eastern and Western tattooing, with the Kurikara-ken 倶利伽羅剣; a vajra sword (三鈷剣 Sanko-ken, or 金剛剣 Kongō-ken) with the dragon coiled around it (Acala's sword), also being a popular representative of Acala/Fudō. His predominance in Japanese tattooing is as a centerpiece within an irezumi 入墨 (full body mural tattoo popularized by the Yakuza), typically on one's back or chest. Images of Acala/Fudō found their way to the West via artists that studied in Japan and brought that influence with them when they returned home; most notably, Ed Hardy. Since then, Acala's/Fudō's image, along with the Kurikara-ken has been often copied by Western tattoo artists without much understanding of the figure and subject, and has been misrepresented as "The God of Fire". Acala/Fudō is making a strong visual comeback in modern tattooing amongst educated artists.
Marcus, owner of Acala Tattoo, has strong roots in classical Japanese martial arts; training and teaching since 1991, where Fudō-Myō-O is a very well known figure in the tradition and a symbolic example of un-shakeable spirit, steadfastness, and wisdom.
Acala is depicted with an angry face, holding a vajra sword in his right hand and a lariat in his left. One fang is pointed up, one down. One eye open, one squinting, and a side braid in his hair. He typically sits (sometimes stands) upon a rock base and is engulfed in flames. He has the physique of a round-bellied child and blue-black skin. Certain depictions also include his main two (of many) servants.
Acala Tattoo & Design was established in the Spring of 2016. The mission of our studio is to bring together the knowledge and techniques of traditional art disciplines into the world of tattooing. Make no mistake, that while the shop is named after a wrathful Buddhist deity, there are no limited style specialties here.
We pride ourselves in polishing our freehand draftsmanship, painting, and design capabilities. We do NOT lean on "tricks of the trade" to make up for a lack of real art skills.
We also find it helpful to educate clients about tattooing and Art in general, in order to open better communications, and help ensure that people get what they want. We also take pride in providing a safe, comfortable environment for everyone to enjoy.