#150064
Sam-I-Am
Participant
@sam-i-am

@GrayCatLove 138897 wrote:

I want to be a tattoo artist.

And an astronaut.

And a superhero.

My life really has been a huge disappointment when it comes to meeting those goals.

I want to be a lumberjack!

#151138
poulosr
Participant
@poulosr

Love it! Couldn’t of said it better myself! Wish everyone would read this article…

#151882
travelingtattoostudio
Participant
@travelingtattoostudio

have any of you guys started different way? I read this topic, and sure I agree, looks ideal, getting apprenticeship etc. I didn’t start “the right way”, and now after few months I see that I need a master, to go further with my skills, someone who would be willing to share his/her experience and Im willing to work hard and pay for it. The only thing that bothers me here is that I am still tattooing and I leave people happy and myself satisfied with works I make. I got BA in arts and been drawing and painting all my life but still after reading those truths here I feel like, hmmm maybe I’m just a scratcher ๐Ÿ™‚ anyone here with similar experience? I’m not questionning first post in this topic, and there’s nothing to argue there just wanted to know what was your story guys and ladies.

#154411
Sam-I-Am
Participant
@sam-i-am

@travelingtattoostudio 140959 wrote:

have any of you guys started different way? I read this topic, and sure I agree, looks ideal, getting apprenticeship etc. I didn’t start “the right way”, and now after few months I see that I need a master, to go further with my skills, someone who would be willing to share his/her experience and Im willing to work hard and pay for it. The only thing that bothers me here is that I am still tattooing and I leave people happy and myself satisfied with works I make. I got BA in arts and been drawing and painting all my life but still after reading those truths here I feel like, hmmm maybe I’m just a scratcher ๐Ÿ™‚ anyone here with similar experience? I’m not questionning first post in this topic, and there’s nothing to argue there just wanted to know what was your story guys and ladies.

In nearly every industry a person can benefit through the experience of others. I was struggling early on in sheet metal work until I got together with a man in his 70’s that showed me all kinds of tricks.

You need a mentor.

#154412
Sam-I-Am
Participant
@sam-i-am

@DavidJednat 89894 wrote:

I am currently an apprentice at a custom tattoo shop in Buffalo NY. I’ve been seeing a lot of posts from other people who are looking to get into the tattoo industry lately. Here are some thoughts and advise.*

Tattoos are awesome. You wouldn’t be reading this if you didn’t think so. It has become a fine art in it’s own right. More and more people from all walks of life are getting tattooed every day. There are quite a few people who want to get into the industry. There are definitely perks. It’s a creative outlet where you pretty much wear what you want, meet new people all the time, and get paid for your artwork. Sounds pretty good doesn’t it?

Are you cut out for the job? The standards are higher these days and many people hoping to get in to the industry won’t make the cut. A lot of the really good tattoo artists are formally trained artists and have huge amounts of raw talent even before they ever get their apprenticeships. It is an extremely mentally demanding job. You have to come up with custom designs for most clients and not mess up. You can’t erase that lousy line you just ran on somebody. You are at a higher risk of contracting communicable diseases even with all the precautions being taken. Kiss your Fridays and Saturdays good-bye. You’ll work those days and evenings for the rest of your career. Everything you do has to be scheduled, not just appointments.*

If you want to land that apprenticeship here are some things you’ll need to know.*

-Have a portfolio. Nobody is going to offer you a chance without one. You’ll need a binder or portfolio with approximately 30-50 fully finished drawings. Include full color, black and grey, and photos of anything too big to fit into your portfolio. You’ll also want to include linework of any drawings in your portfolio. Think of it as the stencil a tattoo artist would use to start their tattoo. Include a few sheets of “flash”. Roses, hearts, crosses, anchors, birds, etc…

-Get tattooed. I can’t stress this enough. Why would you want to learn from someone who you wouldn’t even let tattoo you? Go to the best shops in your area. Get tattooed. Get to know the staff. Ask some questions here and there. Don’t bug them, yet…

-Go to conventions. Meet some other artists. Get tattooed there. Ask them how they got into it. Don’t ask how you can get into it. Keep it about them and they’ll tell you more. It’s a fairly guarded profession and very difficult to glean any info from anybody. Show off your portfolio and ask for suggestions on making it better.*

Read tattoo magazines. They are your best source of where things are going in terms of design and style. Books are usually outdated by the time they are published and they cost a fortune.*

-Don’t buy any tattoo equipment. Your mentor will guide you towards making the right purchases when the time comes.*

-This should go without saying…. DON’T TATTOO ANYBODY!!!! Most mentors won’t have anything to do with scratchers. They don’t want to have to correct the bad habits you probably have from teaching yourself. If you have tattooed anybody, forget it ever happened. Go into it from a fresh perspective.*

-Now you can start to bug your prospective mentor. Ask if you can show them some of your artwork and if they would critique it. Don’t take the critique to heart. Any suggestions they give you are given to help your art, not hurt your feelings. Take the info they gave you and apply it to your next drawings show them off. Ask them if they need help around the shop. Drop some hints at an apprenticeship. If they aren’t looking for anybody then maybe they know someone who is. It worked for me. I had to start at square one again but I got referred to another shop and started getting tattooed there. Made friends, dropped off my portfolio and was asked if I’d like to learn.*

-Work as hard and as often as you can once you get your apprenticeship. Draw constantly, watch while they tattoo, ask questions, pay attention, be polite. Don’t trash talk other artists or studios because you don’t know anything about anything yet. Scrub those tubes! Mop those floors! Take out that trash! Do it without being told! The more work you put into it the faster it goes. It took me eight months till I got to tattoo anybody. It takes some people two years. I took it seriously. I want this with all my heart. You have to want it with all your heart as well. Anything less is a formula for failure.*

I hope this helped anybody who is serious about tattooing and I hope it discourages the rest. Good luck!

Maybe we can make this a sticky?

I just quote this to get it back on top of the heap.

#154389
Amok
Participant
@amok

@Sam-I-Am 143920 wrote:

I just quote this to get it back on top of the heap.

Sam it’s a Sticky thread, it’s always at the top! You silly goombah.

#154390
turbosatan
Keymaster
@turbosatan

@Amok 143948 wrote:

Sam it’s a Sticky thread, it’s always at the top! You silly goombah.

its actually now at the top of the stickies though……

was in 4th place previously

#154391
Amok
Participant
@amok

@turbosatan 143949 wrote:

its actually now at the top of the stickies though……

was in 4th place previously

well I’ll be eating my hat then.

this thread + forum guidlines could be good links for the canned responses you’re working on.

#154394
Sam-I-Am
Participant
@sam-i-am

@Amok 143948 wrote:

Sam it’s a Sticky thread, it’s always at the top! You silly goombah.

I was actually referring to getting the original post to the top of the thread. Brother buffoon!

#154445
jaredlynwood
Participant
@jaredlynwood

I love to have tattoos and yes, I also want to be a tattoo artist.
I think it is a very tough process to make a tattoo, but the best part is that you do not have to feel the tattoo pain. ๐Ÿ˜€

#154443
depedot
Participant
@depedot

I’m 25 and I’m drawing lots of abstract, mostly black, red and white colours.
Was always a huge fan and admirer of tattoos, every day I’m discovering some great artists from around the world.
At the moment have only one tattoo, like someone said here before, would love to have more, have plenty different types of ideas, but when it comes to actions cannot make up my mind. Plus there’s also an employment issue.
My friends were always saying that my drawings would be a good material for a tattoos, one of them even took one of my works and put it on skin. Recently a friend motivated me to do the research and start actually doing something towards learning and eventually becoming in The future a tattoo artist, so here I am. Thank you for posting this, it’s the guidance I need as a total rookie.

#154480
Sam-I-Am
Participant
@sam-i-am

@depedot 144032 wrote:

I’m 25 and I’m drawing lots of abstract, mostly black, red and white colours.
Was always a huge fan and admirer of tattoos, every day I’m discovering some great artists from around the world.
At the moment have only one tattoo, like someone said here before, would love to have more, have plenty different types of ideas, but when it comes to actions cannot make up my mind. Plus there’s also an employment issue.
My friends were always saying that my drawings would be a good material for a tattoos, one of them even took one of my works and put it on skin. Recently a friend motivated me to do the research and start actually doing something towards learning and eventually becoming in The future a tattoo artist, so here I am. Thank you for posting this, it’s the guidance I need as a total rookie.

Awesome dude! Keep us posted, and post some pictures of you’re artwork.

#156164
Maxi
Participant
@maxi

hello to everybody i would like be a tattoo artist I am drawing lots and start tattoing…i am just beginner but i would like know your opinion, advance…if its there something…i been tattoing short time just 8 months, learning alone…here is my work maxipesko | tattoo ? rajce.net
i am sorry for my previous post i think that is little problem with language translator…

#156170
DavidJednat
Participant
@davidjednat

I wish you would have read this thread 9 months ago.

#156183
kittykat200
Participant
@kittykat200

Im finding it very hard to believe that all of those tattoos were done by the same person… there is is a significant difference in ability between one tattoo and another and none of them are anything to shout about so if in fact you ARE stealing other artists pictures to pass off as your own, you could have picked better ones!

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