The first Tattoo Shop Lyle Tuttle ever opened was in 1960 near a Greyhound bus station. Some have credited Lyle as being responsible for making tattooing mainstream. Even Johnny Carson, the legendary Tonight Show host had Lyle on his show in the 1970’s.
Lyle has been in several documentaries on the early days of tattooing. He was photographed by Annie Lebowitz and was in the Rolling Stone magazine for his contributions to the art of tattooing.
After that exposure, many celebrities sought out his services including: Peter Fonda, Cher, and Janis Joplin to name a few.
As the art form went mainstream and away from the underground scene, Lyle became active with the San Francisco Health Department to make sure there were modern standardized techniques in place for sterilization of the equipment used in tattooing.
In 1989 Lyle moved his shop to a real hotspot that was located right near the cable car line in North Beach.
Tania Nixx met Lyle in 1995 and made her the manager of the shop and eventually sold it to her in 2001. He was very busy giving seminars and lectures on the art of tattooing and traveling the world.
Lyle is still a sought after speaker where he lectures on the history of tattooing and the machines used in tattooing.