What You Need To Do to Become a Tattoo Artist

Do you have a passion for art and design? Becoming a tattoo artist might be the right way to channel out this passion. Creative trades require a significant degree of talent coupled with dedication in order for you to make a sizable amount of money out of it. There are multiple ways to become a tattoo artist, but before you do that, you’ll need to hone your skills and sharpen your perception of unique illustrations. These following tips will help you do so.

Practice Makes Perfect

The key element of creating a great tattoo artist is great drawing skills. Drawing, illustrations, and any other techniques related to the craft should be well-practiced first before attempting to practice tattooing. Start by getting a sketchbook and make sure to keep it within hand’s reach so you can practice whenever inspiration strikes you. Draw the things you see according to how other people describe them. This step is important, as tattoo artists need to create designs and illustrations that meet the specifications of their future clients. Be flexible and practice drawing things upon request.

Complete an Apprenticeship

If there’s one thing that can get you into the world of tattooing in a short amount of time, it is securing an apprenticeship. You need an apprenticeship in order to learn everything about designing tattoos, using tattoo machines, and utilizing sterilizing tattoo equipment. What’s more, you will have a more practical perspective on owning a tattoo studio. You will also learn how to manage scheduling, payroll, and taxes. 

You might also want to consider enrolling in training courses to add to your credibility. The HIPAA Exams training course includes a bloodborne and pathogens course, which will be necessary for individuals who might be working in an environment where they’re exposed to bloodborne pathogens (BBP). Since tattoo artists fall into this category, this course will be useful for you.

Create an Impeccable Portfolio

A novice tattoo artist will need to create an art portfolio that contains their greatest works. Because portfolios will determine whether or not a prospective mentor will take you in, you must dedicate quite a bit of effort to this process. To do this, your portfolio must be professional-looking, appealing, and made of high-quality material. 

If you want to impress a  potential mentor, an old binder won’t do the trick. Instead, make sure to use a three-ring binder that has sheet protectors. The design of the portfolio must be sleek and professional. You should also bear in mind to include the best of your work. Adding 25 to 100 drawings or tattoo designs should appease your mentor. You can either add copies of original works, but make sure that the paper you use is of high quality.

Get Licensed

The licensing requirements for tattoo artists will differ depending on where you live. The number of apprenticeship hours, training courses, and exams you’ve taken are all going to factor into the process of you getting a license. You must never consider taking the illegal route of being a tattoo artist, as this will severely damage your chances of continuing on in this career. A tattoo artist’s license will not only evidence their competence, but it will also indicate their ability to work in a safe and sanitary environment. The prime time for getting a license is right after you finish all your artist training and courses.

Purchase the Necessary Supplies

When it comes to tattoo equipment, you’ll find hundreds of them, which will allow you to make preferential choices when choosing your own. You might be adept at a particular style of tattooing, which you can practice by using a particular style of a tattoo gun. You may also want different types of gloves, such as nitrile gloves instead of latex gloves, because of an allergy. In any case, you’ll need to do research first before purchasing your equipment. 

Typically, any tattoo artist will need at least two tattoo guns. They’ll also need sterile needles, tubes, grips, plastic cups for ink, spray bottles, and green cleaning soap. As you grow more comfortable using this basic equipment, you’ll be able to try out other equipment.

Now that you know the basic steps of becoming a proficient tattoo artist, all you’ll need to do is to take action. Make sure that your training and education is of high quality to increase your credibility. You might also want to join the Association of Professional Tattoo Artists (APT), which will provide you with an array of educational opportunities that will elevate your reputation as a tattoo artist.


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