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I think bringing an ipod's cool as long as you're not jumping around to change the music every few minutes. I've used an ipod because I can listen to music that relaxes me and helps me to stay still. It also takes the pressure off the tattooer to entertain the client, they can just get in their own groove with the tattoo. And it certainly beats bitching about whatever music's being played at the shop! But everyone's different, check with your tattooer if the ipod's cool with them.

I consider myself a respectful and well-behaved client. I tip generously and I've been known to bring baked goods and Virgin Mary statuettes to artists as "thank you"s. But I admit I have used an iPod and iPhone (Words With Friends, checking email, texting my husband, never any phone calls) during recent appointments. I never thought of this as rude behavior. I figured as long as my devices were silenced and I wasn't squirming to use them, it was perfectly acceptable client behavior, especially since it helps distract me from the pain. I also assumed most tattoo artists prefer not to chat it up with customers, so I thought if I entertained myself they'd be happier. I do talk with an artist if they engage me, but I try my best to allow them to focus.

The original member who suggested this was bad behavior, I think, admitted he wasn't an artist. So I'm curious what the artists on the board think about this.

In related news, I will from now on ask an artist for permission to use listen to an iPod or to text.

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arrive on time or even a few minutes early. if your appointment is the first one of the day and you arrive early before the shop has opened then whenever someone shows up, allow them to go in and turn off the alarm and turn stuff on and open up before coming inside.

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I consider myself a respectful and well-behaved client. I tip generously and I've been known to bring baked goods and Virgin Mary statuettes to artists as "thank you"s. But I admit I have used an iPod and iPhone (Words With Friends, checking email, texting my husband, never any phone calls) during recent appointments. I never thought of this as rude behavior. I figured as long as my devices were silenced and I wasn't squirming to use them, it was perfectly acceptable client behavior, especially since it helps distract me from the pain. I also assumed most tattoo artists prefer not to chat it up with customers, so I thought if I entertained myself they'd be happier. I do talk with an artist if they engage me, but I try my best to allow them to focus.

The original member who suggested this was bad behavior, I think, admitted he wasn't an artist. So I'm curious what the artists on the board think about this.

In related news, I will from now on ask an artist for permission to use listen to an iPod or to text.

I think you hit on all the key points, as long as the devices are silenced, you are not moving and the cord to your headphones isn't getting in the way of tattoo seems okay. Some people talk while they get tattooed and it's fun to chit chat with those people, others don't say two words, so I can understand them wanting their own music to listen to.

I personally like to talk during a tattoo, If I didn't think I had anything to talk about with a tattooer I probably wouldn't want to get tattooed by them, but on the other hand I'm sure some tattooers prefer silence and some situations dictate it. For instance right now I am writing this because I know the tattoo my boss is doing has a lot of straight lines and I know he doesn't want to be distracted.

Asking is probably not a bad idea, even though I don't see anything wrong with it.

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I know how awkward it is for some artists to ask a client to undress, so I avoid that awkwardness by undressing completely before all tattoos, regardless of placement. Common courtesy, really.

In the same vein...

I have an appointment for Sept 3 to get my first leg piece. It goes from just below the knee to the ankle. I was planning on shaving my own leg the morning of said tattoo.

I'm afraid I'd find I enjoy having my left leg shaved by another man so much fun, I'd end up going to the shop every Saturday just to get it shaved again.

Could get expensive.

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In the same vein...

I have an appointment for Sept 3 to get my first leg piece. It goes from just below the knee to the ankle. I was planning on shaving my own leg the morning of said tattoo.

I'm afraid I'd find I enjoy having my left leg shaved by another man so much fun, I'd end up going to the shop every Saturday just to get it shaved again.

Could get expensive.

I'd recommend against that. When not used to shaving that area on the leg it's very easy to put little nicks in it. Cuts (shallow or not) are bad thing for the area to get tattooed.

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In Australia, its not common to tip really except maybe in hospitality (In general, most industries have pretty decent minimum wages so its not really needed but appreciated) but beers or `jazz cigarettes` never go astray lol. In Japan they dont really tip either, so I brought the catclaw crew a bunch of wacky australian souveniers and a bottle of Hennesy. (and crushed icees because its to friggin hot here!!)

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I'd recommend against that. When not used to shaving that area on the leg it's very easy to put little nicks in it. Cuts (shallow or not) are bad thing for the area to get tattooed.

Guilty as charged here, I'm afraid. I nicked myself several times shaving my leg to try and save the artist the hassle. We joked about it, but I'm not sure I made it much easier for him, because he had to work around or over a few nicks.

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I'd recommend against that. When not used to shaving that area on the leg it's very easy to put little nicks in it. Cuts (shallow or not) are bad thing for the area to get tattooed.

Good point! I never would have thought of that.

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Yeah I have to admit I have cut myself shaving as well trying to save the tattooer the trouble. But I have gotten a little better and try to do a pre shave. I try to focus on the area where the bandage will be because it is a lot more painful if it's taped to my leg hair.

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Ah yes, the fun of peeling off several bits of sellotape when you're hairier than Robin Williams.... Very pleasant.

Joking aside I do still try and shave the area I'm having tattooed in advance provided I think I'm not going to slice myself up... But I guess it depends on the size of the piece and where exactly it is. I think the leg was a special case, something about around the knee and shin just turned out trickier than expected.

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I'd recommend against that. When not used to shaving that area on the leg it's very easy to put little nicks in it. Cuts (shallow or not) are bad thing for the area to get tattooed.

I asked my one tattoo artist about doing just that, shaving a hairy body part prior to the appointment. They told me not to and that they would take care of it at the shop where they can keep everything sterile. It's not like they use expensive razors. The ones they use are sharp enough for one really good shave. If your embarrassed about your body hair in that area what are you going to do when your tattoo is all healed up and there is that nice covering of hair there again?

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While I'm new to getting tattooed I just put myself in the position of the person tattooing me. I think at least I am doing it right.

Pre-shave the area. (I am one hairy mofo)

Show up early, usually half-hour to forty-five minuets and sit quietly until called

Chain smoke pre-tattoo so I don't get the nic-fit shakes

When getting tattooed I sit VERY still

I do not talk unless talked to. I personally hate when people talk to me while trying to concentrate.

Another big one is LISTEN to advice. Unless you are a tattooer yourself, you pay them to be the knowledgeable one in the situation. These are all examples of things I take from my own job and apply them to getting tattooed. I personally would love to listen to music but won't since I tend to tap my feet to the beat unconsciously.

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The other day I was looking at Shiges' site and saw this photo

sh_1055_01.jpg

I then realised that this client must have the same concerns and considerations for his artist as @hogg does ;)

I know how awkward it is for some artists to ask a client to undress, so I avoid that awkwardness by undressing completely before all tattoos, regardless of placement. Common courtesy, really.

Shige to client "Lets get a photo of your chest piece and sleeves" Client to Shige "Just let me take off my pants"... lol.

(yes I am aware that on shiges' site you can see that the same client was getting photos of his backpiece at the same time... but for the purposes of hilarity we won't acknowledge that)

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The other day I was looking at Shiges' site and saw this photo

I then realised that this client must have the same concerns and considerations for his artist as @hogg does ;)

Shige to client "Lets get a photo of your chest piece and sleeves" Client to Shige "Just let me take off my pants"... lol.

(yes I am aware that on shiges' site you can see that the same client was getting photos of his backpiece at the same time... but for the purposes of hilarity we won't acknowledge that)

Bahahahahaha...........this made my day!!!

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DONT SHOW UP EARLY!!!!!

10 minutes is acceptable. Any more time and it makes the tattooer feel rushed.

I have a hard time with this one. Getting tattoed in NYC means I have to catch a train which leads me to be at least half hour early. Didn't realise people didn't like it. I always worked off the policy "fifteen minets early is better than one late"

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@Duffa That's the strange thing about Japan, they don't think of the naked body how we do in the west. Yeah, it could be a bit strange from time to time but over all I don't think they think much of it. Seen tons of photos of people getting tattooed on their upper backs, but still completely naked.

Example: Talking to one of my female friends about Japanese High School (separate boys and girls schools) and she was saying on very hot days they just take their skirts and shirts off and walk around in their underwear. I was like holy shit I wanna go to that school.

Another one is my tattooer came to the bar I work at, met a girl and she said she works in porn. When I went to his studio later that week we started talking about her and it ended up searching in google. Now Im sitting there in my underwear (squid slacks) looking at porn. Didn't pay to much attention to it cause I didn't want it to get any weirder then it was two grown men, one in underwear, watching porn.

It's just a culture thing.

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@CaptCanada - bahahahahaha now thats some cultural differences!

I was sort of aware about the Japanese and their attitude towards nudity with bath houses, the naked man festival (google it if you have no idea what I'm talking about!) but this is on some next level steez ;) (and clearly the greatest high school system in the world!)

Honestly though, cheers for sharing those stories, especially the pr0n one haha, you could have taken that one to the grave

Oh and my quote of the week this week people is:

Didn't pay to much attention to it cause I didn't want it to get any weirder then it was two grown men, one in underwear, watching porn.

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In Australia, its not common to tip really except maybe in hospitality (In general, most industries have pretty decent minimum wages so its not really needed but appreciated) but beers or `jazz cigarettes` never go astray lol.

I know this is an old post, but just wondering how you (or others from Australia/other "non-tipping" locations) deal with this?

The last two times I've been tattooed I've tried to tip, and it's just been awkward.

First shop called me up half an hour after I left and said I paid $50 more than I needed to, and did I want to come and collect it? My response was a kind of "Errm... that was, uh, deliberate. You know, a tip?" "Oh... umm... are you sure?"

The second shop, the guy at the counter insisted on getting me change. I said not to worry about it, and he was all "nah, I'll just pop down to the bank!". Again, had to explain that it was a tip, and he and the artist just sort of exchanged looks and there was some nice awkward silence.

Should I not bother anymore? It seems like tipping is standard elsewhere in the world, but here it's not.

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@ThaliaCamille - Tipping is definitely not standard here in Australia thats for sure, but it could never hurt to offer ;)

As you've experienced, unless your in a restaurant/bar etc and there is a clear tip jar, most aussies will just say "nah, she's right you might need it" lol, and its true, you might need it.

My understanding of the reason for tipping was to help supplement a low income/low hourly wage? If anyone wants to help shed some further light on this feel free to jump in, I'm from a non tipping tribe

As mentioned, what does go down a treat here with tattooers (and anywhere else in the world I'm sure) is a beer or 3, nicely rolled joint (should they be that way inclined) or even some snacks or a cold refreshing beverage for the session.

Where in Australia are you at the moment?

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