Should i find a new artist?

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5 weeks ago i got this tattoo, pretty happy with it overall, i gave him what i wanted and he put it together very nicely. BUT there are a couple things that i'm not finding answers about, and it may just be part of the healing process underneath the top layers of skin, i might need to find a new artist, or it might be completely normal XD


This tattoo was for my almost 3 year old daughter, who loves flowers and butterfly's, and has adored my tattoo from the day she saw me with the bandage around my forearm and knew it was the tattoo i had been telling her i was going to get. I have 2 other small tattoo's to potentially compare it but 1 is on the back of my neck and i barely ever see/saw it, the other is from when i was 16 (14 years ago) and neither of them really mean anything to me and i have forgotten about them on and off since i got them so i have never really looked at them extensively.


I've been a little worried also that maybe i didn't take care of it right, maybe i put too much Aquaphor on it at a time or maybe i rubbed the Aquaphor or lotion too roughly and the skin flaking off while i moisturized wasn't ready to come off and was taking ink with it. Or maybe it got too much sun and faded out, after the 2nd day it wasn't in direct sun but i had to drive home from work in the sun, but i kept the sun off of it during the drive, it did get maybe 30 minutes of direct sunlight the first couple weeks, not for longer than 5-6 minutes at a time, though i was outside using shadows to shield it a couple times for maybe 20 minutes at a time but no sun was directly on it, not sure if indirect light can still have the same effects.


I'm by no means unhappy with it, i love it, and it means a lot to me which is why i'm so concerned. I still have a lot of work that i want done on and around it, i'm leaning toward a koi fish (another thing that my daughter loves) sleeve with a koi fish on the outside of my forearm and another koi fish swimming underneath this tattoo. And like i said, this tattoo means a lot to me and i'm not sure if the things that are bugging me mean i need to find a new artist, if its just part of the process, maybe i did something to it during healing, maybe too much sunlight, maybe the ink just didn't hold very well, so i turn to you fine people ^_^


Any help would be appreciated :)


This may all just be a case of me being only inches away from it and able to see every imperfection but i would like your opinions.


Much of the lettering has a look almost like brush lines instead of being solid black, with a lot of the tighter lettering area's not being filled at all.

brush line look (the camera didn't pick them up very well but they look like wavy black lines)







tight lettering area not filled, there are several areas like this






wing edges look patchy and almost gray in some spots






looks like color has bled out of the lines in several areas, this being the worst, camera did a bad job, not sure if you can see it, 2 humps starting about halfway up the left side of the "L", it's probably really only noticeable to me and the other instances are along the thing lettering outline and just makes it a bit fuzzy .







Edited by TreeHugger

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you are definetly looking at it too closely

which i know i do too sometimes with a new tattoo

especially when its located so prominetly on the forearm

my first impression was that i liked the tattoo

i know you have identified some areas you are concerned with

areas where you believe some ink might have dropped out

or possibly not been tattooed completely


first i would say dont look so close

the tattoo has a nice impact

bold readable impact


second give it a little more healing time

especially with a forearm piece

for me they take awhile to completely heal


third and most importantly

remember - its a tattoo - on skin

it will never be perfect

but also - it doesnt need to be perfect to be awesome


as for the additional work

and wether or not to choose another artist

thats up to you

maybe discussin your concerns with the artist who did this piece would be a good course of action

some folks might advocate inquiring about touching about those areas you are concerned about it

i'm not a big fan of that idea typically but if more work is being done on this piece by the same artist they might also been considering this aspect moving forward


anyway - keep us updated and welcome 

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SUPER nice tattoo!

it is very common to need touch ups on black work. You can't tell at 5 weeks though and based on what I'm seeing any touch ups (if you end up needing any) will be very minimal.  

You did nothing wrong.

well you are doing one thing wrong and we are all guilty of it from time to time. Stop over analyzing everything. It's a great tattoo and is still healing. 

Ive had areas of black that looked light while healing and then after it was healed it looked great.  

Congratulations on your tattoo. It's a great one!  Get more!!!!!  The more you get the less over analytical you'll become  


i do NOT think you should go to another artist. Whoever did this is good and gave you a great tattoo. Don't have it touched up by another artist. If you get more tattoos then definitely feel free to branch out to different artists as we all do, but there is nothing wrong with the tattooer  that gave this to you and any touch ups should be done by them. 

Edited by Rob I

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It might need some touching up to bolden up the lines and shading, but overall I think it's a nice tattoo. If you're planning on getting it colored in, most of these "imperfections" won't even be visible. Re-evaluate in a couple months or so after it's more settled in.

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Get your free touch up. I do this too, always look at the little places that need more ink. Just politely show your artist and ask for touch ups, and as always tip generously =)

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I'm with the above on the touchups. Any artist worth their salt will offer them, and when I first saw the post and the first pic I was wondering what the complaint might be, because the lines are solid and the script is very well done.

This looks like a tattoo that will hold up (with proper protection from sun, like you already know, etc.) I don't think you did anything wrong at this early stage. No worries. Your artist has the skills, and everyone's skin takes ink differently, so a touchup is all that is needed. 

+1 to @kblood

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it's pretty normal to over analyze your tattoo for imperfections. we've all done it.

meh i don't think I'd even bother with a special visit just for a touchup, the tattoo looks fine.

you can always hit some of the areas bothering you when you session again with your tattooer for the next one.

it looks like a decent readable tattoo, you're in good hands.


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