Be very sure you trust an "artist" before you let them touch you.
For quite a while I had been interested in getting a tattoo. In South Carolina, tattooing was illegal until 2005. Before that, I had many opportunities to get tattoos via friends who had machines, but wanted to wait to go to an actual shop. Midway through 2008 my roommates older brother said he had a shop that would do work for cheap because the guy was strapped for cash. I checked out the shops website (www.medievaltats.com) and wasn't all that impressed with the work, but decided to go in anyways because what I wanted done was so simple that I felt anyone could do it. The first music that I remember listening to as a child was Pink Floyds Dark Side of The Moon album, and had always wanted the album cover tattooed on me. I love colour tattoos but do not want colour on my skin, so I decided that I was going to get it in grey with some white accents. I hung out at another shop in Goose Creek, SC alot (www.hollysbodycanvas.com) and was used to the goings on of a shop. That being said I was not nervous at all going into the procedure. The guy drew up a stencil and put it on my arm and let me look at it. Right off the bat I noticed that where he had put it was an awful placement as far as bicep tattoos go. It was right smack dab in the middle of my arm rather than up near the shoulder where most tattoos go. Im rather tall and skinny so this actually worked out for me because I wear smaller shirts alot and this placement put it right below my sleeve. So I was cool with it and he set out tattooing. Now, this is my only tattoo so I have nothing to
compare it to, but it was one of the most painful things I have ever gone through. He was pushing down so hard on my arm that I had to push back to make it not move. I could feel my skin being displaced a few inches from where it normally lies, and when he was done with the first line on the triangle and I looked at it, I could see a huge squiggle in the line. I watched him do the next line (these are 2.5" lines now, nothing huge) and it was even worse. It had squiggles throughout the whole thing. At this point, my heart was sinking so I stopped watching and just let him fuck the rest of it up. When he was done with the outline, he used the same 3 round liner needle to shade with. Unfortunately I didn't know much about tattooing at this point in time or else I would have bitched at him for not using a real shading needle. So he starts in with some grey shade and everything is looking alright so I stopped watching again. When I look down next, he is putting in the white and
is colouring in the lines coming out the other side of the triangle which I had said I didn't want! At this point, I really wanted to cry. He finished up with the white, and when I looked at the finished product, it was the worst thing I had ever seen. The grey and white were supposed to be even throughout the triangle, but there were points where there was almost no white and there were points where he completely missed with both colours. In the lines coming out of the triangle, I can see the little dots the needles made because he wasn't shading in a circle but in a straight line. You can also tell by the way the ink was deposited that he had his machine running wrong. The outline was terrible. The ink was bleeding out from where he layed it down and I actually had ink coming out of the tattoo for a few days. The first line he did is raised because he put it too deep. All the lines are thick and ugly except for one which is super thin but still crooked. I seriously feel a
s though I have a drawing by a three year old on my arm.
My roommate and his brother got tattoos done the same day by the guys wife (apprentice for 2 years) and they far exceed what I had done. They still leave alot to be desired, but they are much better. (if you look on their webpage, my roomies brother had the kid from mad magazine done on his wrist..) I was totally unsatisfied with the work and was told that the guy would fix it for me if I wanted. I definately need to get it fixed, but will never go to them again for work. He didn't even give me any aftercare instructions after I told him it was my first tattoo..
I guess the moral of this story is that years of tattooing count for nothing. Having a lot of customers count for nothing. Having a sweet shop with a drawbridge leading up to the bathroom counts for nothing. Having an apprentice counts for nothing. Never assume that because they are established means that they can tattoo. My tattoo consists of a dozen lines (none straight) and terrible grey and white shading. MAKE SURE YOU WOULD TRUST YOUR LIFE WITH THIS PERSON BEFORE YOU LET THEM EVEN GET CLOSE TO YOU. I paid $80 for this tattoo and I just went to a shop here in Dallas, TX a few weeks ago to see what they would charge to fix it and they said $120. So now I have to pay more than I paid for it originally to go and get it fixed. I may let it sit there for a while as a reminder to not cop out on things and that you do get what you pay for. I feel bad for saying this, but please avoid this shop at all costs. You will not be happy with the end results.
Look how bad that is. See nothing is straight? See how the light beam going into the triangle has a "halo" around the outline where the ink has run? See the spot in the bottom left of the triangle where there is an absence of any colour? See how thick the white shading is on the sides of the triangle and then how it is basically non-existent on the bottom of the triangle? I just hope I can find someone who can fix this.
submitted by: Anonymous
on: 21 Dec. 2008