I'm sure some of my friends who are tattoo artists will agree with me-don't scrimp, rush or demand when it comes to your tattoos. A good tattoo is a thing of beauty and a source of pride. A bad tattoo is a mark of stupidity that's on your body forever. I've got a few tips and comments on tattoos after the jump.


If you don't mind, I'd like to bullet point this.

*Good Tattoos cost money.  Why you would expect one for "free"?  The plumber doesn't come by and unclog your toilet for free.  You are talking about something that is on your body FOREVER, it's worth dropping a few bucks on.

*Spell check or Proof your tattoo.  It's not your artists job to figure out what you're "trying" to say.  Spell check that saying or whatever and bring it in to your artist WRITTEN down!  The same goes for 'words' in other languages.  You're inker probably knows how to make Chinese symbols or Hebrew lettering, but that doesn't mean he reads or understands the languages.

*Avoid portraits at all costs, unless your artist has a portfolio full of them.  Your grampy or your kid could look like insane cartoon versions of themselves.  Only the most highly skilled artists (like maybe 1-2 people in a town the size of Lubbock) can do a dynamite portrait every time.

*Ask your friends opinions for artist suggestions.  You friends can tip you off to some artists.  It doesn't mean you shouldn't give some of the up and comers a chance if you like their portfolio pix, but make that decision based on the complexity of the tattoo.

*Respect your artists opinions.  Sometimes things just don't look as good "in the skin" as they do on paper.  Your flat designs may not work that well the round of an arm.

*Make sure your artist isn't a pretentious jerk.  You might find this a little humorous, but many of you will want some Greek letters or maybe a cartoon or a design that has been done a thousand times. THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH THAT, IT'S YOUR BODY. I'm just informing you that there are MANY tattoo artists who feel they are 'too good' to do this type of work and won't give it their full effort.  Most will just turn you away when you ask for that type of stuff, some will just half-ass their way through the job.

*Go to respected shop.  You could end up with a horrible infection or some type of communicable disease by getting a tattoo in less than sanitary conditions.  With all due respect, tattoos that were done at a kitchen table often look like tattoos that were done at a kitchen table.

Make sure you see them open a NEW needle and NEW colors while they're at it.  Think about people who double dip their chips and how nasty that is, now imagine someone who is redipping in ink that was used before.

*Do the follow tattoo maintenance and care.  Make sure your putting the proper lotion and medication on your tattoo.  Also, use sunscreen on them in the future if you want the colors to hold longer.

*Tip.  Make sure you tip your artist. You may want to use them again and tipping is pretty much expected with tattoos.

*Oh yes, it hurts.  Less on the arms than anywhere else (except with they get near the armpits). Suck it playa.  A good tattoo will feel like it's being brought out of you instead of being put on you. It's worth it.

So what about you?  Any tips on tattooing?  I know we have a lot of artists and a lot of canvas out there?  Did I mess anything?

Take a look at some of these tattoos gone wrong and you'll know why I wrote this blog!  (oh, the music in it sucks and is not relevant to the pix).