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Dilemma: to share info or not to share.

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Not sure if this is the place to start a thread like this (and if not, please delete). I come from the mindset that one should not share tattoo info with anyone other than peers, or the very very very few deemed worthy (meaning they are paying dues and earn it)...... However, I will be going to Nairobi on my way back to SA in January. My brother is currently residing there, and being someone that has been close to the tattoo scene for so long, he has befriended a tattooer there. I have been forewarned that he would like to buy any equipment I might be wanting to sell, and will very much like to meet me. His work is of poor quality (at least by our standards), but I haven't been able to locate anything I would consider high quality there...... So, my question, I guess, is; how do other professionals on here feel about traveling to, and interacting with cultures that are still so behind in the tattoo world?

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My initial thoughts say, yeah help a brother out, 'cause he will likely never meet another western tattoo artists. On the other hand it's kinda like you can't teach him all he needs to know in the (I'm assuming) short time you will be there so it could end up being a bad idea.

There's been a lot of talk here about who should be privy to information. The consensus has been that if the person is deemed worthy of it, they can have it. So I dunno, maybe bring some old equipment you don't need anymore and if he turns out to be a cool guy with his heart in the right place then let him have it?

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Well, I guess I will take the first shot at it. Personally, I feel that if cultures didn't share their art with one another, we would still be drawing on cave walls with sticks and berries.

There are still tribes in the rain forest hand poking tattoos with bamboo, because that is all they know. But, instead of just selling him some set up and cutting him loose, examine him as a person and as an artist to decide if his heart is true to the art, and deserving of what we have all worked so hard for. (some more than others. lol) And if so, give him guidance, not just tools. Remember, tattooing didn't start in the US, it started in other countries and by other cultures, because of their sharing we, as tattooers, can do what we love and respect.

I hope I didn't piss too many people off, lol.

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Bring some Tattoo Artist Magazine back issues. If you can't get him tattooing well, at least try to get him tattooing clean; that seems like it would be a priority in that situation-TONS of blood-borne pathogens in that part of the world.

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When faced with tattoo ethics; I just ask myself if what I'm doing is harming tattooing in any way. I make it a point to give back more than I take. I can't imagine that you would be doing tattooing a disservice by at least helping this aspiring tattooer out with his aeseptic practices. It could be a legitimate opportunity for you to reduce disease transmission in a fledgling tattoo community. Beyond that, it probably wouldn't hurt to drop a few technical/artistic hints as well. Pandora's box is long past open, these days it's all about damage control. If you end up saving a few people from contracting a communicable disease, then I say it would be worth the effort. Also, it may be a positive experience from an anthropological standpoint. Just think; if Horihide hadn't exchanged ideas with Ed way back when, who knows where the fuck we would all be. I believe that if your heart is the right place, and your motivations aren't selfish you will be promoting our craft in a positive way. As far as selling equipment goes, I'm not sure how I feel about that. I would probably meet the guy and see what he is all about. I would consider just kicking down equipment that you no longer use if you deem him worthy. I realize that my opinions on information sharing may not be a popular one, and I certainly don't feel the same about scumbag scratchers, and tattoo schools, etc. here in the states. I'm definitely not about to going helping out my direct competition, and I am very aware of the importance of paying dues and earning your opportunities the old way. I'd love to hear what other tattooers have to say about this topic.

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    • You got me wrong actually. He didn't mean that he doesn't want to tattoo what do I want. As long as I said "Woman portrait" he joked about the one with the head dress but I never wanted it LOL. It was a mistake by me writing down that sentence in that way, I apologize for that (my english is not good so yeah, here we go.).  Thank you about the 10 posts.   
    • Tattoos take 4 - 6 weeks to heal. But @oboogie is right, that looks like waaaaaay too much lotion. Use just the tiniest possible bit to keep the tattoo from drying out. 
    • I'd get a new artist that IS interested in tattooing what I want.   Also, you need 10 posts to start a thread outside of initiation.
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