Maybe this is naive or just hopeful, but I want to start an artist signature line of T-shirts, designed by Tattoo Artists, I know this is not a new concept, but the niche will be that they are not shop T-shirts and not Sullen big productions from the larger companies (which are awesome). I would like to see simple clean designs, limited colors on Black shirts, made locally, of limited runs of 100 -300 shirts only, so that it actually matters that you have one of a limited supply (value added). Also limited run designs will mean that the art is constantly changing with fresh designs by the artists. There is a real opportunity for the Tattoo Scene to support local makers of things, like t-shirt makers and printers etc, instead of having things mass produced in China. Help your cousin Jim, you know what I mean. North America used to be a world producer, now we are consumer extraordinaires. This also gives a creative venue for tattooers who make awesome art which not so Tattoo-able sometimes, which can generate income for a rainy day fund when they are not tattooing (yes that happens).
Here are 5 designs which I am considering for Black T-shirts (hence the black back-drop).
What is your feedback? Why one or the other? If there is consensus, this thing can pop out in the real world and you are a part of it. How often do you get that opportunity?
I build Kustom tattoo armrests and tattoo workstations , 3 styles available rotor, tripod and a all aluminum travel model. All products are made in America using America materials and guaranteed for life... Instagram @therealcaliirons or give me a call at 951 533 4184
I read this earlier today and loved it! It highlights the reality to wannabe apprentices compared to the Kat Von D ideal of living like a rockstar.
Can't see that it has been shared already... hope this isn't a duplicate thread!
I am looking to gain an apprenticeship at present, and I know how difficult it is to get someone interested in my work! It isn't easy but would be worth it!
If you are thinking about getting into the industry, give this a read and a lot of thought!
Those of you already experienced and in the industry, it would be awesome if you'd like to add your thoughts along this subject too.
Click out the link / or continue reading below...
Brandon Collins: “So you wanna be a tattoo artist?” | TAM Blog
"With the invention of tattoo “reality” shows, the average un-tattooed or mildly tattooed person is led to believe that tattoo artists are superheroes: they can draw an entire back piece in 15 minutes, go out to the clubs all night and still come to work on time, able to tattoo whatever you want, wherever you want it.
That sounds awfully appealing to some kids–but it couldn’t be any further from the truth. Anyone who has spent time in a tattoo shop knows that most tattooers are your average hardworking dads and moms with mortgages, car payments and phone bills,not prima donna rockstars that get VIP everywhere and drive Lamborghini’s. Those TV shows make a mockery of our profession and because of them, our trade has been diluted by half-ass, mediocre tattooers. Not only have these hacks not paid their dues, but they pump out crappy $20 tattoos that the average joes doesn’t even realize are shit.
Before deciding you want to be a tattooer, think about this: Say my appointment for the day doesn’t show up, so that $400 I needed to pay rent and put food on my table will just have to wait. If YOU go to work and no one shows up, YOU still get paid and so you can afford to sit home home and watch “TATTOO SCHOOL” and say to your stoned roommate “bro, I can totally do that shit!”. You get breaks and paid holidays, insurance and an guaranteed paycheck every week. We don’t. We work 50-60 hours a week tattooing, drawing and painting with no medical benefits and no retirement funds.
Don’t listen to your family. That skull with the lightning bolts and a joint in its mouth you drew in the 8th grade ISN’T amazing. Your parents, close family members and friends are always going to tell you that you are a natural artist. Their biased encouragement will only give you the false confidence to go into a tattoo shop and get your feelings hurt. Tattooing isn’t a hobby or something just to pass the time. It is a profession and a sole mean of income, so if you think we will welcome you and your “tat guns” into our trade with open arms, you are sorely mistaken. Apprenticeships are meant to be hard–to weed out the undeserving. If you are lucky enough to get one (and I do mean lucky) you will be taught a skill that can carry you for the rest of your life and you are forever indebted to the person who taught you. There are those dip-shits that don’t have the balls to go into a tattoo shop and try to get an apprenticeship – or they did and were tossed out, just order some “guns” online and “do tats” out of their house. Not only is this completely disgusting, unsanitary and unethical, but also illegal. Don’t even think about doing that. Those fucktards can do some real and irreversible damage to someone not to mention potentially spread disease.
Most tattoo artists don’t make a lot of money. Tattooers get paid by the hour but that money isn’t dumped right into our pockets. We have to give a percentage to the shop and pay for supplies and what-not. In reality we only get a fraction of what we charge for your tattoo. So when you tell me, “Dannnng $100?… Thats a lot, you must be rich!” and I want to run a steel spike through your head, you will understand why. As I mentioned before, if an appointment doesn’t show up or you don’t have anything scheduled, you don’t get paid. Imagine going to your job at Home Depot or where ever and working a full day without pay.
So next time you have the urge to be like Kat Von D or whatever rockstar tattooer is the flavor of the week… remember this: Countless hours of work for minimal pay and no benefits is the life that we have chosen and will defend with extreme prejudice. Do yourself a favor: keep your day job, and leave our profession alone."
Written by Brandon Collins
Brandon owns and works at Nightmare Studios in Reno, NV.
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