(Casper, Wyo.) - With some inspiration from American poet and author, Charles Bukowski
, one Wyoming soul
roams free; free with decoration for all to see.
Daniel Tredway, 51, got his first tattoo in his 30s and has not stopped.
"I got into it pretty heavy; I just loved it and kept getting 'em," said
Tredway, now living in Casper, grew up in Illinois where he earned a degree
in 2005, taking on a career in healthcare. After completing the nursing
program at Black Hawk College, he worked in Alaska for a while and then
would eventually land in Wyoming.
Tredway worked in Gillette for awhile, then came to Casper to work at
Wyoming Behavior Institution (WBI), Poplar Living Center and he is
currently working at Shepard of the Valley Healthcare Community.
One way he stands out: he is completely covered in tattoos.
"To me, it's all just one," he laughed. "I couldn't tell you how many I
have. They cover my arms, my legs, my head and my body. I have been
tattooed a lot!"
For the past 17-18 years, Tredway has been tattooed off and on, he said.
The tattoos represent more than a thousand hours of time and some $25,000
worth of work, and he anticipates getting more. At one point in his life,
he was tattooed for 10 days straight.
"I really just like getting them, and I like the attention. I like going
places, and I think at first it weirds people out, but then they get over
it. Sometimes I overcompensate with my patients, and I go out of my way to
be nice to get past my looks," said Tredway.
While attending nursing school at Black Hawk College, he said he could not
stand class. But that was until he got on the mental health rotation, and
he found his fix.
Working with mental health patients and helping them to smile, that was
what he wanted to do.
One of his favorite tattoos, a simple yellow and black smiley face on his
"I just love it, I cannot explain it but that one always makes me
has value, (looking at his smiley face tattoo). Everything that has value
in our world, we don't seem to see, but we seem to value the things that
are least important."
Growing up, adding tattoos to his body was not something his parents
approved of, but he would eventually grow out of trying to impress them.
"Even though my mom and dad don't have tattoos, and they really don't like
mine, I don't care. I feel like if I lived out in the woods, away from
people, I would still look like this," said Tredway.
He continued, "If I could, and didn't have to work, I would be in a tattoo
Much of his work has been done in Arizona, and he told us that he has had
many different artists do work on his body. He spends much of his time at
Black Sunday Tattoo in Casper.
Flames, cue-balls, skulls, pumpkins, a bio-hazard logo, colors and his
favorite, a smiley face, Tredway continues to live and work in Wyoming,
where he can be the free spirit he wants to be.
Tredway concluded sharing one of his favoirte Bukowski quotes:
*We're all going to die, all of us what a circus! That alone should make us
love each other but it doesn't. We are terrorized and flattened
by trivialities, we are eaten up by nothing. -Charles Bukowski-*