Ray J has defended a tattoo he recently got on his leg of his older sister, R&B legend Brandy.
The new tattoo was inked on the singer, actor and reality star’s leg earlier this month by tattoo artist Alexey Mashkov, more commonly known as Mashkow. The tattoo is of Brandy’s face, but heavily incorporates Mashkov’s signature style – she has glowing pink eyes, and graffiti-like tattoos that say “Best friends 4 ever” and “From Ray with love”.
Ray J shared a video of the process on his Instagram account. He added that he plans to get his “whole leg tatted” by Mashkov, noting that he “had to start with my best friend”. Predictably, Ray J’s new body art drew a mixed reaction, quickly going viral and racking up a slew of differing opinions in the comment section.
Now, both he and Brandy have discussed the tattoo. In an interview at the airport with TMZ, Ray J defended the new ink, saying, “It’s my leg, it’s my sister.” He continued: “I love my sister and that was just a symbol of me saying thank you… If it wasn’t for her I wouldn’t be here. I’m humbled just to have her help me.”
When asked about Mashkov’s distinctive style, he said, “I can’t tell an artist not to put his signature on it.” However, asked about how his sister felt about the tattoo, he admitted, “She was a little uneasy about it,” later saying she “didn’t like it”.
Brandy herself has since shared her feelings about the tattoo, also with TMZ, affirming that the piece turned out how it was “meant to be” and comparing Mashkov’s work with Jean-Michel Basquiat. “I didn’t understand it at first, I have to be honest. But then he explained it to me and showed me the tattoo artist’s whole page and it was amazing.”
“I understand it,” she added. “I’m just glad he got a tattoo of me.” When asked if she would return the favour by getting a tattoo of her brother, she said that she was open to the idea, but that would it likely be a little more low-key. “His name, something simple. Maybe in the back of my ear.”