For the first time in Ink Master
history, the show has a female winner. Ryan Ashley was named winner of Ink Master Season 8, earning a cash prize of $100,000, a feature article in the premiere tattoo publication Inked
, the ultimate bragging rights title of 'Ink Master' and a guest spot at Oliver Peck's Elm Street Tattoo. In addition to these winnings, Ashley won a brand new Dodge Charger.
This season it was Peck vs. Núñez as the judges picked their own teams of tattoo artists to advise throughout the competition. Thirty of the top tattoo artists from around the country were whittled down to two teams of nine, who battled it out all season in permanent ink in various tattoo challenges that not only tested the artists' technical skills, but also their on-the-spot creativity, with competitors creating and executing original tattoos on "human canvases."
Each week's challenges focused on a different tattoo technique and style. After every challenge, the contestants faced a tough panel made up of musician, filmmaker and artist Dave Navarro (Jane's Addiction) as well as world-renowned tattoo artists Chris Núñez (Hand Crafted Tattoo) and Oliver Peck (Elm Street Tattoo).
The final three contestants – Kelly Doty, owner and artist at Helheim Gallery in Salem, MA; Gian Karle, traveling tattoo artist from Puerto Rico; and Ryan Ashley, owner and artist at The Strange & Unusual Oddities Parlor in Kingston, PA – were each assigned a master canvas and sent back to their home bases to complete a 24-hour chest-piece tattoo.
In addition, the three finalists also completed seven-hour tattoos leading into the live finale. During the finale, fans voted to determine who completed this challenge the best, with the most votes earning a spot in the top two. After thousands of tweets, it was determined that Ryan Ashley had the best live tattoo of the evening, which secured her spot in the final two. After the judges reviewed the artwork, Gian Karle earned the second spot in the final two.
As Ashley and Karle revealed their master canvases to the judges – and America – in the end, Ryan Ashley was named the season 8 winner of "Ink Master."
"Ink Master" is produced for Spike by Original Media ("Swamp People," "Comic Book Men," "The Horn") with Glenda Hersh, Steven Weinstock and Andrea Richter serving as executive producers. Original Media is a subsidiary of Endemol Shine North America.
Sharon Levy is Spike's Executive Vice President, Original Series, Chachi Senior is Senior Vice President of Original Programming for Spike and Tori Socha, Vice President, Original Series oversees production of "Ink Master" for the network
Original Media is a subsidiary of Endemol Shine North America and is run by Emmy award-winning producers Glenda Hersh and Steven Weinstock. Producing hundreds of hours of programming across unscripted and scripted television, digital media and feature film, Original Media has built a strong reputation for cutting-edge content and quality production. Hit series include Ink Master
and Ink Master: Redemption
for Spike; Swamp People
for History; Dual Survival
for Discovery; Comic Book Men
for AMC; I Love You… But I Lied
for Lifetime; and The Horn
for Red Bull TV.