Post Modern Ink and Tattoos
How To Get Tattooed
So… You want to get tattooed. Great! This can be a rewarding and life-enriching experience. IF done right. Knowing HOW to get tattooed is key to being happy with this decision. I hope in the following paragraphs to help you, as a potential client, learn the skills necessary to get a good tattoo, one you can live with. People get tattooed for a number of reasons… some good, some not so good.
Tattoos can be a scrapbook of a person’s life. They tell us about the wearer’s loves, hates, hopes, fears, accomplishments, and regrets. They can be purely decorative. They can tell where a person is from or where they want to be. It may be done as a way of being “different” or “rebellious”, or fitting into a larger group identity. Ideally, they are applied in an attractive way, by a knowledgeable artist, fitting the body and personality of the wearer, with an enduring personal significance and a timeless style that will not go out with the current trend. Tattoos of this type are seldom regretted and can be empowering points of pride for their owners. I don’t know one person with a good quality, appropriately sized, and personally significant tattoo they wish they hadn’t gotten. For many, however, this is an impulsive act, one eventually regretted for that very reason. Often, not much thought is put into the design’s significance or its overall effect on one’s self-image. Too many times, tattoos are gotten because they are fashionable. The problem is, fashions change, and unlike other fashion accessories, you have to keep your tattoo. This is why it’s important to know HOW to get tattooed.
For many, this is a daunting and confusing endeavor, especially the first time. After all, it’s permanent. This idea alone can be nerve-racking enough. Most people never do anything permanent. Half of marriages nowadays are far less than that, and the idea of committing to an aesthetic seems far tougher than committing to a soul mate. The first step is to know your self. What are you into? What do you hold dear? What do you desire? What do you believe? What types of imagery do you find pleasing, and what part of your body would you like to accentuate with a tattoo? These are good places to start. Placement, scale, and flow, are paramount in importance. Good tattoos, in my opinion, should look like clothing or jewelry from a respectable viewing distance. A prime example is traditional Japanese tattooing.
Another would be Pacific islander. Optimally, they should read well from across the street. If so, they will age well. Badgy, small, isolated tattoos look like melanomas and only get worse with time. These should be avoided. Then you need to decide on the imagery. Good design reference can be found anywhere; the internet, library, magazines, comic books, greeting cards, even wallpaper. This part is subjective. Look for TYPES of imagery you like, not necessarily specific tattoo designs. A good tattooist can then help you develop a basic idea in a beautiful finished piece, but he or she needs direction from you.
Next you need to find that artist… the one who can do the mental math for you, adding up your expectations and ideas to give you exactly what you never knew you wanted. Word of mouth is invaluable. If you see a tattoo you like on someone, ask who did it. Look a tattoo magazines and on the internet to find out about local tattooists. Once you’ve found a few prospects and located their studios, take some time to visit them and view their studios and portfolios. The portfolio is key. How artists present their work speaks volumes about them professionally. Look for HEALED pictures of quality work a style that speaks to you. Look for consistent line work, smooth shading, and solid color.
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