Back in season 8, Salem, Massachusetts based artist Kelly Doty joined the cast of Ink Master. Prior to appearing on the show, Doty had gained a presence in the industry for her bright, bold, and most of all, unique new school tattoos. While on Ink Master, she impressed the judges with her impressive abilities and won three challenges, earning her a spot in the live finale alongside eventual winner Ryan Ashley and finalist Gian Karle. And although Doty produced a number of impressive tattoos while on the show, she was most remembered for forming an alliance with Ryan Ashley, Nikki Simpson, and Gia Rose—who together were an unstoppable girl group that will go down as one of the most successful pairings in the history of the show. Their foursome was so iconic that they went on to star in the spin-off series, Ink Master: Angels, which ran for two seasons.

Now, Doty is back on set as a guest coach this week, alongside fellow veteran Jime Litwalk. We caught up with Doty to learn her thoughts on this season’s shakeup and perspective on the changing landscape of tattooing as a legendary female artist. […]