I got my first ink a month ago. It was a paw print of my recently deceased 17 year old canine best friend. The artist did an excellent job. All he had was a blurry picture from years ago but understood what me and my daughter wanted. She already had several and did the explaining. I later received condolences from my vet with his actual paw print included. So I decided to add to my existing tattoo to make it look more like his to scale. I did not return to the original artist as he was very far away. (My daughter had researched and picked the place and drove and she lives 4 hours away but had come home for our pet's final days). Anyway, I went to a place nearby that came highly recommended. I read all the artist reviews and chose one that specializes in black and white. I met with him last night and showed him the print from the vet for scale. He understood exactly what I wanted and said it could easily be done by anyone there as he was in the middle of a whole back tattoo. They got an artist who was free. He seemed very confused what I wanted. He declined a couple of times saying he didn't feel comfortable with it. I thanked him for his honesty. The first artist I wanted kept explaining to him what he needed to do. He even grabbed a pen and drew outlines and shades and it was exactly spot on. So the second artist said he knew exactly what to do. Hindsight I wish I had walked away and just got an appt with the other guy. But he kept saying it was a very simple job and anyone could do it. So I ended up with something that was nothing like I wanted and the pen outlines were ignored as well as me repeatedly saying I wanted to keep it light and gradient. Things went from bad to worse as he tried to correct it. I'm including the before and after pics. So, once this hideous design heals, what can be done to get more space between the toes and get that gradient effect and have it gray and not black? I have a feeling this will not lighten up. My other one didn't but I was okay with it. The other one didn't hurt and it didn't feel like he was pushing the needle in as hard as the guy last night. So I'm sure the new ink went in deeper. I'm still fighting depression over my dog and having his former print gave me some peace. This new one has set me way back. I fear there is nothing that can be done and I'll just have to have laser removal. I contacted the shop after I got home and spoke to the first artist I had originally wanted. He said to let it heal and then he would look at it.