1. Nobody Cares About Your Tattoo But YouY
You think that your tattoo is a spectacular display of your personal aesthetic and a deeply meaningful symbol, but no one else is neglecting it. When I got my tattoo, I wanted to show everyone, but I soon learned to keep it for myself. At first, some people made breathless words like Oh, my God, or did you really do it? Or it’s a lot bigger than I thought! People will say things like, “I guess you can always cover it with your sleeve” or “I hope it did not cost much”.
You will listen very loudly to hear what they think because you are very excited, but they may not even notice it. Or they can just sit there, just squinting and tilting their heads from side to side.
But most of the time, they will not say anything at all. And maybe it’s better that way.
2. Who Owns Your Tattoo: You or the Artist?
Who does my tattoo belong to? Bruciüs was my tattoo artist and he applied the ink with skill and inspiration, but that was my idea. It’s my skin, but his ink (or at least the ink was his before I paid it), and once finished, he asked if he could take a picture. Part of me wanted to say no, but I remained motionless for the photo, which he posted on his social networks, even though I never signed a model.
This begs the question: who owns this tattoo, mine or his? Could he legally put my tattoo on someone else’s arm? And who controls the photo of a tattoo: the artist, the model or the photographer? If someone asked him if he could use the photo, I would like to have his say, and if they offered to pay, I would like my fair share. But the answer is complicated. As we have collaborated in the design, we both own copyright. I would have liked to know it before. The idea that someone else has rights to something on my body is simply scary.
Aside from the legal aspects, I have to admit that even if it’s my tattoo, it’s a bit like hers too. In a way, how both parents have a say in their child’s life: there is a strange, inevitable and indelible intimacy in the tattooing process.
The tattoo is like our baby: I have custody, but the proof of his hand is permanent. There is no DNA, brand or manufacturer’s signature to prove that it is his job, but it is. So knowing that the tattoo retains the essence of the one who made it is just one more reason to choose your artist with great care!
3. Do You Know What Your Tattoo Means?
If people can see it, they will ask you to explain it, so you will need to prepare an answer. I am not very partisan and I prefer not to let myself go to complete strangers. The first time that happened, I stammered and blushed.
Since then, I have developed a scripted answer that summarizes without being too revealing. If your tattoo represents something intensely personal, private, emotional, revealing, embarrassing, or even potentially ashamed, keep in mind that you will be asked (by the first dates, grandmothers, neighbors, potential employers, various health professionals, children, and -out clerks) to put it into words.
So, instead of always stammering something like “I loved this TV show, but I do not like it anymore” or “It’s a commemorative tattoo for my little brother who drank to the death” or “I got it in jail, I do not really know what I thought”, you will want to practice better or more appropriate answers to any situation.
4. Why a Tattoo Shouldn’t Be Cheap
Tattoos are not cheap. And they should not be. In this culture where artists are supposed to work for free, I firmly believe that creative people should be fairly compensated for what they do. A tattoo is something you will see every day, after all: this is not the time to look for bargains or cheap imitations. Does discount sushi seem like a good idea? Do you really want a $ 5 haircut? Would you buy underwear in a savings store? “Cheap Tattoo!” Is not an enticing slogan. If you pay $ 10 for a painting that took three months for the artist (who has endured an apprenticeship, a master’s degree and 20 years of experience), the work of the artist loses value and you have a painting of value worth $ 10.
So I found a local artist whose work I admire and paid for what he asked for, although I probably could have looked for someone whose hourly expectations were a little closer to mine. Let me put it this way: I had to work 31.5 hours to pay for my tattoo. I exchanged a week of my work for a few hours. It was an insane amount of money, and every time I look at my tattooed arm, I see an invisible price tag. The expense was as painful as the process, but I’m happy to have done it.
If you can find one inexpensively or if you find an artist who is willing to work with you on the price, imagine creative ways to thank him and repay him in one way or another.
5. Your Tattoo Is Not Going to Look Exactly How You Imagined
Prepare to be surprised. It’s just not possible that it ends exactly as you see it in your mind, not even if you are ingratiating yourself, or even if an artist could read your mind. When it is translated from ink idea to ink on skin, it will inevitably change. It may be even better than you imagined, but it will not be the same, and as soon as you get it, it will start to change. Some of the ink will disappear. It will fade. You will gain or lose weight, you will become pregnant, you will grow old, your skin will wrinkle and your tattoo too.
It’s the difference between fantasy and reality, and if you’re a bit like me, it could be a challenge. I have strong ideas about what I like and I prefer to keep some control over certain things (my body, for example). Getting tattooed was a communication exercise, exactly what I wanted, but it was also a lesson in Zen: I do not have control. Control is only an illusion.
(I had to go back again to have the artist add to the design. Find an artist who understands and respects this messy, creative process.)
6. How the Shape of Your Body Affects Your Tattoo
Square peg, round hole. I am not quite sure that my tattoo suits me. I spent so much time thinking about what the drawing would look like. I forgot to think about it.
In retrospect, I would like to point out that if you draw a square on a curved surface, it will have to bend. I would also consider the negative space that the design will create, the shape it will give to the skin around it.
Here are some visuals to help you see what I’m saying:
- Have you ever seen someone whose pants pockets were too small for their butt? Yeah, it’s not pretty.
- What if a waiter brought you a huge plate with a tiny, lonely dollop in the middle? How would that make you feel?
- On the other hand, what if it was heaped so high the food slopped over the edges and you couldn’t even see the plate?
The skin-to-ink ratio is important. Consider these questions:
- Do you want to see only the tattoo or the body it’s on, as well?
- Will we see skin peeking through and around the ink or will your “canvas” be completely covered in pigment?
- Is the tattoo hiding or enhancing your body? (Neither is better, it’s just something to consider.)
A Word About Ink
Colored inks are not tested by the FDA, so we have no idea how they affect our bodies. Black is probably the least toxic choice.
7. Tattoos Move!
I’m talking about the guy with the sexy woman inked on his arm, and when he bends, she dances. But I’m also talking about someone with an arrow on their arm and wrist or a dagger plunging into the skin, with drops of blood flowing or a bird flapping its wings like crazy.
Just because the tattoo is static does not mean that you can not suggest movement, if you wish. Blur marks, movement lines
8. Why Can’t You Use Fresh Aloe Vera on a Tattoo?
When the artist warned me in writing not to use aloe vera, I had to ask why. Since he did not have a good explanation, I went home, I cut a piece of my plant, I washed it thoroughly and I applied it immediately, as I always do for skin wounds or abrasions. It worked well and I healed very quickly.
I am not an expert and have no medical training, so I do not know what gives me the idea of not agreeing, but I am still. Has there ever been a reliable study that proves that aloe vera is not acceptable for tattoos? If you have information, share it in the comments section below!
9 Tattoos are seriously serious
Tattoos have become so common that we could take the procedure for a simple cosmetic procedure, like getting a haircut or going to the dentist. Well, maybe it’s a good little walk for you, but do not be surprised if that’s not the case. You may also feel frightened, terrified, emotional, vulnerable, attacked or triggered, and all of these reactions are completely normal.
I had not thought about it before that happened. In a pain tolerance test, I would probably get a very high score. I thought I had two children without epidurals, it will be a breeze. And then, I felt that bad, shocking needle in my skin and I had to lie down silently, as receptively as possible, shouting “OW!” in my head. It took all my strength not to move my arm. The pain was so intense that it threatened to bring my lunch back from my stomach. My life flashed before my eyes. The ghosts of my dead parents stood on top of me, shaking their heads.
Think about it: in what other life situation could you invite a stranger not to touch you but to hurt you? Even the dentist offers novocaine. But all you can do is stay in the masochistic capitulation. As I lay there, biting my lips, silently pleading with the ceiling, I realized that it was not just a cosmetic thing. It is extremely vulnerable, surgical, psychological, emotional, spiritual and scary. It’s serious.
This may be why so many people are falling in love.
If you knew then what you know now, would you do something different?