Quotations for tattoos

Sunday September 5th, 2010 @ 2:08 PM

Filed under: Tattoos

So, I have two questions about “rules” for getting quotes tattooed on yourself.

First off, I’ve noticed a lot of people don’t get quotation marks around the quote. I don’t want to seem like I’m trying to claim it as my own, but I’m not sure if it’s the norm to get quotes on it.

My second question is, should I change the quote?

It’s from a book called Rant: An Oral Biography Of Buster Casey. The quote is “We won’t ever be as young as we is tonight”

I know I’m going to get a lot of people bringing up the grammar, but personally, I’m not really interested in changing the quote.

What do you guys think?

What do I think?
Rant wasn’t his best book and you’d be better off getting a quote from Fight Club or Invisible Monsters. Questions of taste in lit aside- it’s your body and your tattoo. If you want quotes, get them. If not, it’s perfectly acceptable to get the tattoo without them.

“All God does is watch us and kill us when we get boring. We must never, ever be boring.”- CP

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Posted by Shawn Porter | Permalink | 2 Comments

Artist credit/etiquette

Wednesday March 17th, 2010 @ 10:40 PM

Filed under: Tattoos

In planning an addition to an ankle/calf tattoo, I ran across some artwork that I wanted to use. I did email the artist and got permission to use it, but I’m wondering - is it generally considered “polite” to put their signature in the tattoo somewhere [really small, obviously] or is giving them credit whenever it’s photographed enough?

I did read pretty much all of the AskBME archives [morbid curiosity, I know] and did my best to search the Encyclopedia/Wiki but I don’t know if I just missed it or if it’s not in there.

I’ve never seen an artist’s signature included in a tattoo, but then, many of the tattoos I’ve seen that were of published artwork were pretty instantly recognisable (Brian Froud, Alex Gray, H.R. Giger, etc). I suppose you certainly COULD put the artist’s signature into your tattoo, but most people don’t bother, and I wouldn’t say it’s customary, in my experience. Readers, your thoughts on the matter?

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Posted by Lori St.Leone | Permalink | 4 Comments

Used tattoo gear

Sunday January 24th, 2010 @ 1:30 PM

Filed under: Tattoos

I have a friend who just bought new tattoo gear and said he would sell me his old stuff for pretty cheap. Is it safe to buy a used tattoo machine?

Is it safe in the hands of someone who isn’t a tattoo artist? Probably not.

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Posted by Shawn Porter | Permalink | 2 Comments

Pin-Up GIrl

Tuesday January 19th, 2010 @ 8:37 PM

Filed under: Tattoos

My question requires more of an opinion based answer, then a factual answer. But I would prefer the opinion from someone who deals with body art on a regular basis, so this is the place I have come.

I want to get a pin-up model tattooed on my upper outer thigh, from just below my hip to just above my knee. Generally, you would see pin ups tattooed here who would appear to be ’standing’ as the person stands. however, the tattoo I want (which is based on a picture of my mother, therefore altering it is not really an option), she is laying down, so her feet would be nearest to my knee, and she would appear to be ‘laying down’ when I am laying down.

does this seem like an awkward placement??

Awkward, maybe.
I’ve seen it done quite successfully a handful of times (well, not with your mother’s portrait. that would be an amazing coincidence) so I know it’s possible to look great.

I have a friend who’s thighs are tattooed so that the images are right side up when she looks at them with her knees drawn up; standing they’re upside down. They look awkward, but she loves them, and that’s all that matters.

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Posted by Shawn Porter | Permalink | Comments


Wednesday January 13th, 2010 @ 2:57 PM

Filed under: Tattoos

Is there any specific way to find an apprenticeship? I have a portfolio and there a lot of shops in my area but I’m not sure what the best way to approach someone looking for a job and I don’t want to get scammed. I have found one before through a mutual friend but I cleaned the shop for months, learned nothing and had to leave when the guy starting hitting on me. He had only asked me to work at his shop because he likes young girls. I’m tired of hearing that the tattoo community is secretive and people are unwilling to share their knowledge etc. etc. No one I know who actually tattoos’ acts secretive and if no one was getting any apprenticeships then where are all these artists coming from? There’s a tattoo shop on every other street corner, these artists have to be coming from somewhere.

In the future, learning to tattoo will probably end up like learning to cut hair; you’ll pay for classes and end up getting your tattoo license and with luck be placed in one of the “tattoo shops on every corner”.

Until that point… these are the basic questions that need to be answered;

1. Why you?
You need to understand the amount of people who, on a weekly basis, walk into all of those tattoo shops and ask for an apprenticeship. Most of them have portfolios. Most of them have drive and determination. What sets you apart from them? What do YOU have to offer that everyone else who comes in doesn’t? What do they/don’t they see in you?
You’re asking them to train you to DO THEIR JOB. The likely hood that you’re going to be at their shop forever is silly, so other than a fee for apprenticing, what are they getting for training you to compete with them on a long enough timeline?

These are open ended questions; I can’t hope to answer them but it certainly goes to why it’s so difficult to obtain an apprenticeship.

2. Do you have a relationship with an artist at the shop?
Not a “relationship”, but… have you been tattooed there? Have you referred people to artists in the shop? Have you brought money into that shop or are you just picking them out of the phonebook?
You mention that the artists you know aren’t secretive, so try asking them to recommend you to the shop they work at as an apprentice.

3. “I’m tired of hearing that the tattoo community is secretive and people are unwilling to share their knowledge etc. etc.”
And tattoo artists are tired of people thinking that they are entitled to apprentice. You’re working against a system that’s been in place since the late 1800s; rules of protocol have been set up and stuck to. And while they’re slowly changing… you’re not likely to get too far with people who believe in that system by telling them what YOU think if it. I know artists who’ll make you learn how to use jigs to painstakingly make your own needle setups. You’ll do it over and over again until you get it right and as a reward for FINALLY getting it perfect, they’ll give you a box of presoldered needlebars and a slap on the back.

The best way to get an apprenticeship is to realize that NOTHING worth having is just handed to you. I have a friend that was a “counter bitch” (he even had a shirt that said that. In bright pink letters) for years before finally getting that apprenticeship. He worked his ass off to get a career that will be his for the rest of his life. He wasn’t tired of being told how secretive the tattoo world was; he was motivated enough to earn what he was given.

Build up a relationship with an artist. Bring them clients. Bring them your drawings. IMPRESS them. Put into tattooing as much as you hope to get out of it.

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Posted by Shawn Porter | Permalink | 6 Comments

Disrespectful receptionist

Sunday December 27th, 2009 @ 3:18 PM

Filed under: Tattoos

Hey! So this isn’t a question about an actual mod, but more of studio etiquette.

I went to go get a walk in tattoo done and after I spoke to the receptionist she told me that the tattoo would take a lot longer than I had thought. It wasn’t a big deal, and I thanked her for checking with the artist and told her I’d come back when I had a day free. When I went to get my drawing back (which is a hand written quote by my favourite author), she remarked “you know, even though YOU’LL know that it’s supposed to be kind of crooked and stuff, no one else will and they’ll just think your tattoo artist didn’t know what they were doing”. I was a little stunned, and she asked where I wanted it done and I told her, then also mentioned I wanted it “upside down” so I could read it to which she signed loudly and proceeded to lecture me about how that was a terrible idea and how tattoos aren’t supposed to be upside down even though it’s a tattoo for me and that it will look funny.

I’ve always had a good experience with this studio and I was totally taken back by how rude she was being. Is it really the receptionist’s place to lecture clients on their choice of tattoo? I had a feeling it may have been because I don’t look heavily modified. But I was just wondering if this kind of behaviour is acceptable, or whether I should email a manager about this? She’s definitely put me off wanting to go back to that studio for a while. Thanks for any info, or your own experience with this.

p.s. is it really that unusual to have an “upside down” text tattoo?

As someone who manages a high volume studio with a lot of first-time clientele, I would absolutely be interested in hearing about customer and clients’ experience in my shop.

While it is the staff’s job to “consult” the client on acceptable placement and design of a tattoo, it is certainly not their job to make anyone feel uncomfortable about their tattoo design.

Many custom artists will discuss tattoo placement with their clients as per the “flow” of the piece with the natural flow of the body structure and encourage the client to readjust the piece accordingly (for instance, armbands “cut off” the arm and don’t flow as nicely as a more vertical S shape on the upper arm would) However, some clients are adamant on an arm band and the tattooer will exercise his or her right to not tattoo a piece that they don’t think will work well on the client’s body. At this time it’s up to the client to compromise with the artist who’s name is forever attached to the piece or to simply find a different artist who doesn’t mind doing it.

As far as having a hand-written quote translated into tattoo form on your body, upside down so you can read it, I don’t see any problem with that. This is clearly a more personal tattoo for you than something you’d seek out the artistic skills and style of a certain artist for. Many people have script tattoos in personal handwriting, even mirror image so they can read it when looking at their own reflection, upside down, etc. The nice thing about tattoos is that they can be 100% your own and for your own reasons.

Please don’t be put off by your tattoo idea because of someone’s opinion of it. Remember that it’s yours and for you at the end of the day. However, consider keeping an open mind with your tattoo artist’s suggestions in what would make your tattoo fit you better.

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Posted by Lexci Million | Permalink | 3 Comments

Lip tattoo?

Monday November 16th, 2009 @ 2:06 PM

Filed under: Tattoos

Does a lip tattoo bleed through your flesh and show on the outside of your lip on your face if done only once? I heard it can bleed through the skin and flesh of the lip and stay on your face forever.

You’d have to go see a pretty terrible tattooer in order for that to happen.
If the tattoo was applied too deep and you had a blowout, I imagine there IS a possibility that it could be bad enough to show through the lip on the face… but the liklihood of this being acheived with a normal tattoo machine would be pretty impossible.

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Posted by Lexci Million | Permalink | Comments

Thigh Tatto

Monday October 19th, 2009 @ 3:31 PM

Filed under: Tattoos

I’m planning to get a tattoo on my outer right thigh that will span from hip to knee. I’m 18 and this will be my very first tattoo (No worries, I’ve been planning this damn thing for five years). The problem is that I very very rarely wear shorts or loose fitting clothes. I wear jeans 90% of the time. I was wondering how my choice in clothing may affect the outcome of my tattoo and cause unnecessary scarring.

Another thing, I tend to get A LOT of ingrown hairs. I’m middle eastern so I have thick course hair that sucks. I get ingrown hairs everywhere no matter the irritation. How would this affect my tattoo and would it also cause scarring?

I have a large tattoo from my hip to my knee and I never ever wear shorts. The outline of the tattoo was fine after 24 of sweats to allow time for the wound to seal up.
With a solid colour piece, you would definitely want to look into wearing loose fitting pants while the tattoo is weeping.

Most of my large colour tattoos are covered by clothes and I find that gently wiping them with a warm cloth a few times a day in the first week helps keep all the sticky, scabby grossness that get stuck to clothes and bedsheets to a minimum.

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Posted by Lexci Million | Permalink | 3 Comments

Latin Tattoo

Monday October 19th, 2009 @ 3:19 PM

Filed under: Tattoos

I was wondering, i wanted to get something that meant alot to me in Latin

But im at a loss for where to get it

i already have love on my right side and stars on my foot


Depending on the font of the script and the length of the words you want to say, your tattoo artist may have a better suggestion as to placement of your tattoo.

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Posted by Lexci Million | Permalink | Comments

UV Tattoos

Saturday October 10th, 2009 @ 12:24 AM

Filed under: Tattoos


I’ve been sitting on an idea for my second tattoo for years now and have just discovered UV tattoos. This would be perfect for my design, but word on the street is it was banned in Australia once before because it was carcinogenic. People tell me cancer sucks, so I’m sure you’ll understand why I’m probably keen to avoid it.

Is the UV in cancer causing, or has the issue been overcome?



To quote Chuck Palahniuk’s FIGHT CLUB: “On a long enough timeline, the survival rate for everyone drops to zero.”

There’s no conclusive proof in either direction. UV reactive pigment has had no FDA (or equivalent) testing and the long term ramifications are yet to be determined.

Ask yourself if it’s worth getting a UV if there’s even a remote chance of cancer*

(that said; tattoo pigments in general have no FDA approval so there’s nothing to say ANY pigment won’t give you long term issues.

+9 / 11 votes Vote This Post DownVote This Post Up
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Posted by Shawn Porter | Permalink | 2 Comments

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