‘Ink Master’ Exclusive: Matt O’Baugh talks finale, master canvas tattoo, and fan reaction

Matt Ink MasterMatt O’Baugh got robbed on “Ink Master” season 6… we don’t know how else to put it. He earned his spot in the finale by producing some really rad tattoos all season, but when he got to the finale his 35 hour master canvas that he worked so hard on wasn’t even judged. Instead we had a twist this season where a 6 hour live tattoo was the determining factor for who the final two were, leaving Matt, his master canvas and the viewers at home scratching our heads over why he had to do a master canvas at all if it wasn’t going to be judged. That being said, Dave Kruseman and Chris Blinston were lucky his tattoo wasn’t being judged, because it was stunning and would’ve given them both a run for their money.

Although many of us were disappointed that Matt’s master canvas wasn’t judged, we were happy to see him in the finale with Kruseman and Chris. This was a really strong final three and all of the final tattoos were remarkable. We had a chance to talk to Matt about his time on the show, his elimination and his strategy playing the game. Check out what he had to say below!


CarterMatt.com: We were sorry to see you get eliminated with the 6 hour tattoo in the finale: How did you feel about your 35 hour master canvas not even getting judged?

Matt O’Baugh: It was really disappointing to say the least. I put a lot of work into that piece. I took my own photos of a model, I drew 3 different full size/large scale back pieces and picked the one that I liked the best. There was a lot of work just in the concept development and design work. Not to mention, I had an amazing canvas that sat like a rock! She did not move once. I cannot say enough good things about her. Not only did I put a ton of work into that piece, my canvas sat for 35 hours! I think we both deserved better than that. But I’m trying to be positive about it. So on the plus side, my canvas has an awesome back piece and I got to show the world what I could do!

There was a lot of strategic play going on in Ink Master this season: What would you say was your most strategic move?

I didn’t really have a lot of strategy going into it. My strategy was just to do great work and not piss anybody off! Haha. Katie and I were just going to have each other’s backs and do the best we could to get to the end together. But if I had to pick one “strategic move” it would be choosing to tattoo a mandala in the last episode.

You and Katie came into this season of Ink Master with the plan to team up and bring each other to the end: Do you think that plan helped you both in the early episodes compared to what some of the other artists were doing?

It helped us a lot. In the beginning we would spend our time off discussing who the stronger artists were and what their weaknesses were and how to target them specifically. I think other teams caught onto that and followed suit.

You did a lot of really rad tattoos this season, what was your favorite piece?

I was really stoked on a lot of tattoos that I did, really. Unlike a lot of the other artists, I don’t really have a specialty. My specialty is tattoos! I had never done a trash polka tattoo and that was my first. I was really happy with it. Also my lion morph was one of my favorites! And of course, my back piece and the tiger that I did in the finale!

What has the fan reaction been like for you online and in life?

I have had an overwhelmingly positive response (especially after the finale) from people in “real life” haha. I can’t go anywhere without being recognized from the show. I went to the fair this past weekend with my family, and I was stopped maybe 10 times and asked to take selfies with fans. I think it’s awesome. I especially like it when little kids excitedly come up to me and want my autograph. It’s kinda surreal.

If clients want to book you for a tattoo, what’s the best way to go about doing that?

For booking, you can stop by my shop, Black Cobra Tattoos at 6505 Warden road in Sherwood, Arkansas. Or email me at [email protected]! My inboxes are all pretty crazy right now, but I do make a point to respond to everyone. Even if it takes a few days!


We want to give a special thanks to Matt for chatting with us about his time on the show and about the finale. It was tough watching the finale play out the way it did for Matt since he was someone that was so easy to root for, but he did a great job this season and his master canvas must be over the moon to wear such a stunning tattoo – we know we would be! We are all proud of what Matt did this season and is a winner in our books.

Did you want to see Matt win “Ink Master” season 6? Leave us a comment in the box below and tell us what you thought of the finale. If you are looking for more news on the show then head on over to the link here where you can check out some of our reviews, podcasts, interviews with the artists and a preview on “ink Master” season 7. Also, if you want more great TV news sent your way then be sure to sign up for our weekly CarterMatt newsletter. It comes out every weekend and in addition to getting the top stories and previews, our subscribers get a first look at some scoop we will havign coming up during the week. (Photo: Spike TV)

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