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Hi guys I'm from Asia and looking for advice. 


I worked at a shop 3-4 days a week, for about 18 months. There was another apprentice who I would practice on and they would practice on me. 

After about 18 months the pressure became too much and I'm a very nervous person and everything was so overwhelming I had to leave. 

The boss took 4 machines, all my artwork and made me sign a contract that stated I could never tattoo again at another shop or my own. I said I thought this was harsh about the lifetime ban but he said if I did not sign he would contact supply companies to not supply me, the penalty would be $10,000. 

I know people might say why did I sign that and I ask myself that too, but at the time I was going through a very hard time mentally and I was getting physically sick. 

It's been 2 years now and I've been doing small practice tattoo on my friends etc but I want to continue my career. I live 2.5 hours away from the shop and was wondering whzt your guys advice is? Many thanks 





Edited by Geeza
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Tattoo scene is smaller than you think worldwide. Threatening legal action isn't going to get you any favours or goodwill, you will be black-listed through word of mouth if your master is well-connected.

Perhaps you can return to your master and humble yourself to ask for a second chance. Loyalty is a dying quality in this day and age. You should respect your teacher, but ego often gets in the way for us and we think we don't need the master anymore.

If you gave up so easily after 1.5 years because the apprenticeship was so overwhelming for you, why do you want to return to the path of becoming a tattooist? 

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Just to be clear about my post ... I was not suggesting litigation against anyone, I was simply suggesting that the terms of the "contract" might not be legally binding.  

Worrying about becoming "blacklisted" when one has already been "blacklisted" and banned from the art is somewhat redundant.

And respect, I feel, is something that should be earned.  Threatening someone with fines and blacklisting, and banning them from practicing the art just because they went through a rough spell is not very respectful... just my POV.

Edited by littlefox1970
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