Boo Litjes, Mother of Wolves, Discusses Dogs and Tattoos

If you scroll through the Instagram account of Boo Litjes you might assume she’s a new character on the set of “Game of Thrones”—stoically ruling over the frozen landscape of Winterfeld with her Huskies by her side.

But although Litjes does call herself the Mother of Wolves, she spends the majority of her time tattooing in the Netherlands, far away from John Snow and the White Walkers.

Litjes, who specializes in blackwork, dotwork, and fine-line tattooing, has only been tattooing full time for two years, but she says she’s put in a lot of hours to elevate her craft. She works out of her private studio in Arnhem, which is located in the eastern part of the Netherlands, about an hour from Amsterdam.

Boo Litjes wolf tattoo

She opened her studio in October of 2018 and called it—fittingly—Mother of Wolves. “Some people just call me that in Dutch, so I thought it was a nice name to call myself,” she says. “My three huskies inspire me a lot, whenever we’re in nature I reload my energy and get ideas.”

Pulling Creative Energy From Her Pack

Litjes shares her home with three Huskies.

Raiko is her oldest, and she rescued him from an abusive home in Hungary. “He was underfed and had some cigarette burn marks on his face. So I just took him with me,” she says. “He was a lot of work—didn’t listen at all. But after 6 months, he started to trust me and other people. It was all worth it.”

Boo Litjes dogs

Litjes also cares for Imaya, who is completely blind in both eyes, due to getting glaucoma at just 6-months old. The pup, says Litjes, might also have a brain tumor so her goal is to simply to keep Imaya comfortable for the time she has left. “As long as she’s happy, I just let her run around,” says Litjes.  

The baby of the bunch is Zaira, who is 1.5 years old and the troublemaker in the household. She’s a Husky-Malamute mix, and has a lot of spunk and energy. “She’s the most naughty one,” says Litjest. “But very sweet.”

Boo Litjes and her dog

Litjes says that her dogs keep her grounded. “If I didn’t have them I would be just traveling the world, guest spotting everywhere. But they make me stay,” she says. “After a one-hour walk, when I see they’re tired and had a blast, I just feel like drawing afterwards, with them laying around. They inspire me every day.”

Specializing in Wolf and Dog Tattoos

Because of how much Litjes highlights her dogs on her Instagram account, many clients come to her to get dog or wolf tattoos. It’s become one of Litjes’ specialties.

“I really love tattooing animals or pets. Animals are pure sentient beings who can feel just like us,” she says. “My clients always ask about [my dogs] and, since opening my studio at home, people can see and cuddle them as well.”

Litjes explains that while producing animal tattoos feeds her spirit, she also enjoys working on intricate, geometric pieces. “When I can put some flowers in combination with geometrics or mandalas, I get really hyped,” she says.

Putting Out Positive Vibes

As a tattooer whose popularity is growing in her own country and abroad, Litjes tries to put out positivity and highlight things on her social media accounts that mean the most to her. “I once read that you post on your social media what you’re afraid to lose. It makes sense in a way,” she says. “I love my dogs, they’re a big part of my life. I just upload pictures of them, my work and myself.”

Boo Litjes photo with dog

Litjes is also a vegan, who makes it a point to only use vegan inks and supplies in her shop. “One of the reasons I don’t eat animal products is that all animals can feel,” she says. “A lot of my clients come to me because they’re vegan as well, and they know I only use products free from any harm towards animals.”

Litjes says she’ll continue to tattoo designs of dogs and wolves, inspired by the lovable little furry family that she calls her own. “They mean the world to me. They make me feel happy,” she says. “When a person feels happy, you can see and feel it in everything they do.”

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