Billy

Tattoo collector wants to open own shop.

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Hey guys, my name is Billy I'm from Louisiana. I got my first tattoo at 17 years old. (34 now). I have a sleeve of famous artworks on my right arm. It's unfinished because my artist committed suicide. (R.I.P.) I also have some tribal, flash, my moms portrait, and Picassos The Old Guitarist on my calf. I have some questions and I would like brutally honest answers. I figure the best place to ask is a place for tattoo lovers and artist. Which brought my here.

Here goes....

I want to open my own shop. I am not an artist by no means. I know some artists don't want to work for someone who doesn't tattoo. I appreciate the talent of a great artist. I know that it is a skillful art that not everyone can do. Hence that's why I don't tattoo. I want to open a family friendly shop. (Play area for kids) while mom or dad gets tattooed. Clean atmosphere. Fine art on the walls instead of flash. That would be in the binders. Almost like a casual Drs office. My town has zero shops and I think there is an opprotunity for a successful shop to open there. Having said that. I know it's frowned upon for a non artist to own a shop. But I do appreciate the artist and the art. I would want to hire 2-3 certified artists with excellent portfolios. I would want to be a no nonsense business owner. No drugs or drinking on the job. A cleanliness policy maybe? The artist would have a lot of say so on the on goings of the business since a happy employee makes a happy customer. And the artist knows what he or she needs best. I would want trustworthy artists that I can leave at the shop and not worry about anything. If I'm missing anything please let me know and please be brutally honest. If you guys think this could work, tell me so. If you guys think it's a horrible idea, tell me so. I want the truth. Thanks

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As a customer I would be willing to go to a shop like this if the work was quality but I have no doubt some artists and consumers would frown on it. If you are serious then talk to artists who you might go into business with. Offer up an ownership stake maybe. Not everyone has the disposition to sort out the details and grind of being a business owner but I think you would want to be careful here around issues of exploiting someone else's skill.

My point boiled down: if you are serious the people to talk to are tattoo artists who live and work in your community. My instinct tells me you may get some push back for obvious reasons.

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This topic has been addressed here before in this thread:

http://www.lastsparrowtattoo.com/forum/general-tattoo-discussion/152-non-tattooers-opening-shops.html

Speaking personally, I wouldn't have any interest in setting foot in a shop like the one you described, much less getting tattooed there. I don't want to make assumptions about other people or try to speak for them, but I highly doubt anybody I have been tattooed by would want to work in a shop like that.

If you appreciate the art so much, get tattooed a lot. Buy original art from tattooers. Don't seek to make money from it yourself because you see an opportunity for success. That just makes you a parasite.

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Horrible idea. Unless you are deeply rooted in the tattoo industry with enough pull and respect to hire established tattooers, you're just going to have people who work for you long enough to make some money, and then its on to the next, better, more established shop.

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Hi Billy,

A few thoughts...

To be honest, I don't think I'd actually want my son around when getting tattooed. This would only be feasible for very short sessions anyway. Unless perhaps there is someone around who actively entertains them and looks after them. Probably a matter of age (of the kids). My son is only four, so I'm thinking along the lines of "Mummy, I need a wee" and "I'm hungry" and "I'm bored". Argh. On the other hand, it would make coming in for a consultation easier. So, why not. Might be raising the next generation there ;-)

Graeme's link will give a bit food for thought re opening a shop as a collector. It sounds all rather negative I suppose, but I don't think it's impossible. After all, the owner of Frith Street Tattoo in London is not a tattooer as far as I'm aware. The shop has reputable artists and I believe a lot of people on this forum would happily get tattooed there. No idea how and why it works in that shop, but I reckon it comes down to how you handle it and what the deal is for the artists.

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Since your town has zero shops, if you do a good job as a business owner, you will almost certainly be able to make money doing this.

Still, a terrible idea. Family friendly? Fine art on the walls instead of flash? LIKE A CASUAL DOCTOR'S OFFICE!? No. Just no.

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I want to open a family friendly shop. (Play area for kids) while mom or dad gets tattooed. Clean atmosphere. Fine art on the walls instead of flash. That would be in the binders. Almost like a casual Drs office.

My $0.02

A G-rated tattoo shop...jesus haven't tattoos been watered down enough? A play area for kids...its a TATTOO shop not a dermatologist office...lots of swearing, war stories, casual nudity, dirty and taboo humour, mystery, intimidation and no bullshit. That to me is what belongs in a tattoo shop. Not a friggin ball room to keep the kids occupied for a couple hours. Its a tattoo shop not a McDonalds or Ikea. Get a babysitter. Sit down, shut up and don't move...that's what a tattoo shop is to me. And I don't think that sounds very fun for a kid.

I got tattooed in shop and a tattoo enthusiast popped in with her kids to visit and say hello. It ended with mom spinning her brat around in one of the empty chairs and the kid bumping into the table while I was getting tattooed. I don't want to see your kids when I get tattooed. It's distracting. Tattoo time is my time. And you probably don't want your kids to see my balls hanging out on the table when I get my belt line tattooed. Get your ass-crack tattooed and then reevaluate your business venture.

Keep tattoo shops R-Rated and 18+ (fake IDs accepted).

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