The brand new 9Mag Tattoo Headquarters is officially open! This past Saturday, January 5, Owner Ryan Henry had a grand opening party to showcase the extension of the brand-new shop, introduce the new team and give the city a chance to turn up with the “Black Ink Chicago” crew. Henry is a South Side Chicago native who has been rebuilding the brand of 9Mag with a bit of personal transformation as well.
Henry stated, “What’s going to be different about the newer 9mag is that I spent a bunch of time discovering how to conduct business the correct way whereas before I was doing it by helping people and not knowing how to do things the right way. Now that I have gone through those trials and tribulations and I’ve learned how to conduct business, and from my experience, I use those ways to bring in a different format.”
For the grand opening party, tickets sold out twice. The fans that obtained them got a chance to come and see what Henry had been working on for the last four months. He wanted to show them what the shop is like now that it is thoroughly modernized and contemporary. The night consisted of a catered event and of course an after party in the 8,000-square foot space. The new 9Mag is more prominent and grander. Henry’s team now consists of 10 artist and two piercers.
“Black Ink Crew: Chicago” returned for season 5 on Jan. 2 at 9 p.m. on VH1. This season, fans can expect a variety of different things as everyone figures out their journey, and as always, the turn up will be real, very entertaining and full of surprises.
Henry also talks about how he has transformed personally since last season. “Last year, going through all the stuff that I went through, it made me fall back into a dark place mentally, but it also opened my eyes. I knew that I had to start over; it needed to be done. When I had separated myself from the people that had become toxic, I had to learn to become a better person from that.”
Henry talked about how his past affected his relationship, and while he was in the mode of exclusion, it has allowed him to see that he needed to figure something out about himself internally as well. Sometimes it takes hitting the bottom to learn it, and now that he’s back, Henry is prepared to move forward.
“I would never want to make someone feel as if I’m not putting my all into anything that I do, so this gave me a full reset on how I wanted to eat right, how I want to work, how I want to live and to be respected, how I wanted to love and all these other different things, it was just a full reset.”
Henry is also involved with #HashtagLunchbag, which is a humanity service movement dedicated to empowering and inspiring humanity to reap the benefits of giving using social media. The organization creates bagged lunches for the homeless, complete with love messages, as a vessel to spread this love and inspire others.
“I’m still a big part of #LunchBag Chicago. It initially is about giving back to the homeless. When I first started doing it years ago, I got a chance to see what it was like for them to live that way. I’ve seen people and kids that didn’t have anything. It ended up giving me insight about the homeless, what can happen, what needs to happen.”
His plans for the upcoming 2019 year is to continue to focus on the new shop, focus on progression rather than challenges and create a plan for a 9Mag foundation that will allow people who are less fortunate a chance to explore certain places around the city.
“A part of the plan for the 9Mag foundation this year will permit me to take families (women and kids) who are in shelters around the city of Chicago. They can’t go in selected places or let alone go to the park such as the Millennium Park, the Maggie Daley park you know. I take my kids everywhere because I want them to be able to have that experience. That experience helps them open up to so many different things in life that they don’t get a chance to see.”
Many things go into starting a business, which is why you need to know what and what not to do before you start a business. As an aspiring entrepreneur, you should be ready to take risks but also learn to remember how and why you started.
Henry stated, “If you allow for things to run freely, they will run freely when instead there needs to be structure. Being an entrepreneur is the hardest thing in the world. Strive to build that goal; even when everybody doesn’t believe in your goals, you got to stick with it and understand that sometimes there will be loss.”
No matter what happens just like Henry said in last week’s episode: “I got one team that’s mainly important in my life, and outside of family, that’s 9Mag, and 9Mag starts with Ryan Henry.”
Follow Henry on Instagram @ryanhenrytattoo; to inquire about making an appointment at the 9Mag Tattoo Chicago, check out the website 9Magtattoo.com.