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Jojo Ackermann: Fear of a Flash Planet- "Advice on my first tattoo" READ THIS


Kev
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when people say that they don't want flash because they want something different, i've said.."then you probably want flash, because no one ever gets it"

i won't digress into a long bunch of stories about the same 5 google images being what everyone asks for either.

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when people say that they don't want flash because they want something different, i've said.."then you probably want flash, because no one ever gets it"

i won't digress into a long bunch of stories about the same 5 google images being what everyone asks for either.

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I like flash. Some of my first tattoos were straight off the wall and I liked what I saw and I KNEW what I was getting. It gives people ideas, something they can visualize and maybe ask about a variation that better suits them. Flash was the hook for many of us years back, just looked so cool the way the panels were displayed.

CG

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Good, solid flash is often timeless. Sailor Jerry, Cliff Raven, Spider Webb, Tatts Thomas, just to toss a few names out. I think there is a place for flash and for custom work, and often, they intersect nicely.

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I have an Amund Dietzel piece too! I will never get over his drawings; so beautiful.

It bums me out that people dismiss flash, especially as the same people are usually hung up on getting really "meaningful" tattoos; to me, it is pretty damn meaningful to get something classic that connects me to dozens/hundreds/thousands of other people from different generations, backgrounds, walks of life, etc. A few months ago, my husband got a piece of old flash from an old timer here in Montreal, and when he was done, he told us that he was pretty sure this was the second time he'd ever done this design, and the first time was in 1968 (if I'm remembering correctly), but he did the colours differently. How cool is that?

(That said, I also remember drinking the "custom only" koolaid in the 90s, and I think what is being described in that article is mostly just folks who don't know any better repeating what they've heard they should want. The "no flash" thing is really unthinking. I think that's a great blog post and awesome of him to have had this great dialogue with the customers in question and helped them seen the appeal of flash and really changed their minds about it.)

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I can't remember the last tattoo I got that wasn't someone's flash. I have the privilege of working in a shop covered in hand painted flash and always get first dibs on the new sheets before they go up, but often times I still find myself drawn to stuff that has been up on the wall for years and dozens of people have got them.

People don't understand that all the stuff on the wall started with illustration board and watercolor right there in the shop, they just assume we bought it out of a magazine so they have no problem saying they don't want something off the wall, but we work hard to train people to get better tattoos, and many people have been converted even though it is continually an uphill battle.

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quality read. i knew a girl that when her that I have tattoos that I picked off of a wall, her response was, “ew. I’d never do that. I want all mine to be custom.” This coming from a broad that has a giant crawling panther on her back.

The best analogy I can give when describing people not understanding tattoos and flash is with music. Most people don’t even know what the fuck good music is. they think the top 40 hits on the radio qualifies as good music. How can some ignoramus be expected to understand flash when they’re so willing to be spoon fed everything and not try to figure shit out for themselves. Sadly, even my friends that are into punk, hardcore and indie still aren’t down with getting flash tattooed on them. It’s a total bummer.

Either way, that was a very good article. Thanks for posting it.

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People don't understand that all the stuff on the wall started with illustration board and watercolor right there in the shop, they just assume we bought it out of a magazine so they have no problem saying they don't want something off the wall, but we work hard to train people to get better tattoos

Well . . . at least if it's a good shop . . .:)

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Not much better than getting tattooed whilst checking out various tattooers flash sheets on the walls.

Been thinking of getting a version of this shaun topper snake v tiger flash with the flash in the back ground as a back piece, I have stared at this for hours during my past tattoo sessions.

Tried to post the image but wont let me so the link is there.

Da Vinci Tattoo Flash, Tattoo Ink and Tattoo Art

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We have one local shop that does nice work, one long wall in the shop, nothin but flash. And it has those stick-on dots with the price codes on them. Green + B = $300 and so on. Each has a number so they can retrieve the line drawing to cut a stencil. How old school is that?

CG

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I love the idea of flash work, especially in the learning process of tattooing. The shop I work at has flash ceiling-to-floor, and hundreds of sheets in storage as well, so many amazing artists` ideas in a single shop to work from. The article at the bottom of the Jojo link was pretty informative too :)

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We have one local shop that does nice work, one long wall in the shop, nothin but flash. And it has those stick-on dots with the price codes on them. Green + B = $300 and so on. Each has a number so they can retrieve the line drawing to cut a stencil. How old school is that?

CG

That's almost exactly how we do it, except we just have the prices right on the sheets and each sheet is labeled with initial of who painted it. (example A-25, R-11, D-9) and we just go back to the file cabinet where there is a corresponding folder. It works pretty well, every once in awhile we have to pull something off the wall and photocopy it and make a new line drawing. We have talked about the color code system but I kind of just like the price being on there.

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Great article! It made me realize that the strong aversion to flash designs has now reached a point to where flash would now be the way to go if you want a unique tattoo. Sure it's been done before but you can do it so many different ways, it makes each time you do it a unique experience. Google is the new played out flash design resource. I've even seen 'artists' rip off artwork from 'Deviant Art' artist accounts as an alternative to google images, so that may be the next new thing if it catches on.

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  • 4 weeks later...
We have talked about the color code system but I kind of just like the price being on there.

I kinda wish more shops did this...I've definitely had that experience where I walk in, chat about what I want, pick it out, get it drawn up, and the last thing I hear is, "Oh, it'll be this much" because I've definitely been like "FFFFUUUU...well, I'm already here I guess."

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  • 2 weeks later...

I really enjoyed that article. It got me thinking about just how many tattoos on me came from flash. My first tattoo in 1985 was from flash. I remember telling the tattooer the number written next to the design I wanted, like "A14" or something like that and he pulls a manilla envelope out of a file cabinet and gets the coresponding acetate stencil out and soon afterward he went to work on me.

My fathers one and only tattoo that he got in 1954 is from flash in a tattoo shop outside Ft. Bragg, N.C. I got the same tattoo last year because I was able to find the same design on a sheet of Sailor Jerry flash. The style of artwork on well executed flash is what I've automatically associated with what a tattoo should look like since I was a kid.

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We have one local shop that does nice work, one long wall in the shop, nothin but flash. And it has those stick-on dots with the price codes on them. Green + B = $300 and so on. Each has a number so they can retrieve the line drawing to cut a stencil. How old school is that?

CG

I've never worked in a shop that was any different than that haha

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  • 4 months later...

Fantastic article! I've only recently starting researching tattoos and learning about flash in-particular, but this sums up to me what I've been finding. You might think the image you find on google will make a great tattoo, but you're not a tattooer and the tattooer will know best what will translate onto skin. Those classic images are classic for a reason, because they're the kind of art that translates well into a tattoo. My first tattoo will definitely be some classic flash

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