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    • #15679

      Hi! I’m Christa and i have been wanting to tattoo ever since i got my first tattoo (in a real studio i have NO “home made” tattoos) at 16 with my mother present. that was 20 years ago…O.o i have been into shops, asked about apprenticeships was told i had to pay $10,000, was accepted at another shop but right after i was kicked out of my house and couldn’t start it =( was told at most places they weren’t taking on apprentices and this has been going on for 20 years….every time i live in a new area i ask them all and the answer is almost always the same and never yes (except that one time) so my luck hasnt been all that great…SO WHAT! I am determined to do SOMETHING so that i will have a greater chance at landing that “golden opportunity”. It is still hard for me though, my husband is in the military and we move every 3 years at minimum and any shop i go into says this “we want an apprentice to stay around FOREVER!!!” well people…thats not gonna happen…and i cant make my husband quit his job lol so even if i have to take my apprenticeship in stages i will. if they give me ANYTHING ill be happy because i am in a difficult situation for them AND me. i came across this site looking for any information i can get my hands on and i saw the moderators of this site are helpful rather than hurtful. i like that!

      i have been wanting to get a degree in art while i am learning the trade. im drawing every day and trying to brush up on my skills and learn a few things as i can. i am a stay at home wife with no children and my days are long and filled with nothing lol

      i live in the UK in east anglia for the next 2 years, if anyone knows of an apprenticeship in my area, or a professional tattooist who is empathetic to my situation i would LOVE to hear from them! I am driven, determined and have the will to TATTOO. where theres a will theres a way!

      i did buy a machine (WS-M328: Professional Tattoo Machine 10 wrap coil in pink) and inks, tubes, needles, gloves, clip cord sleeves, machine covers, tongue depressors, green soap, A&D ointment, diffusion bottle, paper towels, saran wrap, (NOT for the tattoo, for my station). i did take out the machine and put it together but i haven’t done anything with it yet.

      i have SEVERAL tattoos (from pros! lol) and each one is a learning experience, i dont just go sit in the chair, i ask TONS of questions! i am thinking about buying those books you have for sale and watching all those videos. but i have to talk to my husband first. we just got back form Tattoo Jam and i met a LOT of very nice artists there who were willing to talk to me and not treat me like a PoS scratcher. i got some work done there and its AMAZING…but even i, the “untrained eye” can see problems with it XD hes only been tattooing for 3.5 years and started with an apprenticeship. his master though just put a machine in his hand and said “get to work” and thats how he learned to tattoo. now he screams about taking art classes and you shouldn’t even touch a machine until you’ve been studying as an apprentice for 3-4 years. its funny how people advocate AGAINST something they did to get into the business. i just want my foot in the door!

    • #26308

      Welcome to the family!! This is absolutely the tattoo site on the web!!
      Definately by the book, it’s worth every penny. Don’t be afraid to ask
      questions, there is a lot of great info on this site and a lot of great people.

    • #26309

      Welcome! And yeah, that book is extremely helpful and an excellent reference to have in your shop even after you have read it a dozen times :) and note, I don’t profit at all from you purchasing a copy of BFMT I’m just some guy from Okie land who found it useful. And this forum is a great place to learn A LOT of stuff about the trade feel free to browse, ask questions, and, provided you have any, share your work with us!

      I would definitely recommend getting some practice in on that machine on some honeydews or practice skins and get to the point where you are consistently feeling confident and looking at a tattoo on one of those and thinking “I wouldn’t mind having this tattoo!” before touching anything living.

      The “WS-M328: Professional Tattoo Machine 10 wrap coil in pink” doesn’t exactly sound like it is worth much to me, definitely sounds like a machine you found on e-bay or amazon on the cheap. But I could be proven wrong, a cheap machine made out of quality parts doesn’t necessarily translate to cheap looking work. Whatever you can do with it, it will definitely help you learn and get started.. I kind of feel like everyone should have a cheap-o machine starting off so they learn how to fix them, especially if your going the “Ronin” route as I like to call it.

    • #26311

      Welcome!! You are in the right place so stick around and ask allot of questions… Get some melons, fruits and oranges for practice…

    • #26310

      And a welcome from me to you as well. :D
      Lets see what you can do :D

      @Infamous wrote:

      especially if your going the “Ronin” route as I like to call it.

      I like that… hahahaha :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

    • #26312

      oh i am definitely NOT touching anything living with this machine lol i did buy a kit BUT i bought it in the UK. the guy tuned the machine and gave me some inks they mix in his shop plus a practice skin and some other goodies. i got some hygiene things from the tattoo convention so i can practice my hygiene but im no where good enough to touch anyone yet. the one i did on the fake skin looks alright (i would be devastated if i had done that to someone though lol), but the inks dont show true in it so it looks kind of dull…im gonna try some fruit and pig skins next, i live right next to a butcher/farm lucky me! lol

      i am not a youngun’ im 36 years old and i have been getting tattooed for 20 years. i am determined to take the time i need to create great tattoos and not busting out some shitty ones because i think i know everything. if that makes sense. lol

      after REALLY digging into this forum, and other tattooists on youtube (not tutorials…more like apprentice guides and NOTHING to do with tattooing but about the business as a whole) as well as other websites, i realized the guy i really wanted to apprentice me (who has said no) should REALLY go back to his apprenticeship lol hes not ready. hes good! but hes not ready. (i watched him open an ink bottle with his teeth……….)

      i will touch living things in a couple years probably, small flash and whatnot, i have tons of people wanting to be my guinea pig knowing that i have no experience so that helps …they are REALLY pushy but i keep telling them HELL NO IM NOT READY lol

      heres the skin i did with a piece i designed. constructive criticism is welcome, but i see where its messed up and i know WHY….the machine kept hanging up on the back of my hand so i would lose lines…it was frustrating but thats something i have to get used to or adjust to where it doesnt do that before i ever even THINK about touching living skin …even my own lol

    • #26313

      Definatly not bad for your first go.

      One thing if I might, your line work. Not as shaky as first feared, which is good, BUT (i use this word alot, dont mind me)
      BUT there is an inconsistency in your thickness of the lines.
      One of the flowers has very bold lines, the other have not. Same goes with the birdy. Some places the lines are thicker, other places, they are thinner.

      It is in fact possible to mix bold and thin lines, but then it would look best if there was an overall feel to it. Like, perhaps the upper part of the wings had a really bold line, and the rest of the bird had thinner lines.
      The two flowers, could also have had a bold boarder line, and thinner inside lines.

      Just viewing it, as it would have been a real tattoo. And that is in fact a key issue. Dont think your designs, or your flash, just as practise. Think of it as a REAL design, on a REAL person, who has to live with this all his life, and 6 month into the grave ;)

      Caught some of your othe work as well, you do digital art as well???

    • #26314

      thank you! yes like i said it kept getting hung up on my hand lol and when i tried to fix those lines they turned out darker than the other ones. i know what you mean about having a bold outline i have done that before on a rose i drew recently. (with pencil!) i was watching a channel who said he turns his machine and lines it up so that the machine coils (or the bulk of the machine) is resting over his index finger. i might try that and see how it works out that would give me the range of motion id like to have when doing linework

      i have a tablet and that dragon on there i drew and painted with corel painter 12 (which was just a trial i haven’t actually bought a copy yet.)

      i used to paint with oils and acrylics, pencil, colored pencil, crayons, sculpture, ceramics…i sew clothing and stuffed animals, crochet and other things…charcoal never behaved for me, pastels and watercolor elude me as well but i have enough natural artistic talent that it just needs some refining. im sure i can figure it out with bunches and bunches of practice!

      i just finished this adorable thing! lol its a zombie lovey (security blanket) for those badass little girls who dont like princesses. XD

    • #26315

      What type of needles did you use for this piece??
      There are plenty of ways people hold their machines, just have to find what works for you. There is no right or wrong here.

      So that dragon, thats digital???
      Hehe hope you dont mind, but I’m tagging along your deviant page ;)

      Charcoals are fun ;) Atleast I think so ;)

      Ha I bet my daugther would love a doll like that ;)

    • #26316

      i used a 7L and a 14RS i think i would like a mag better the round was kind of a pain to shade with

    • #26317

      I rarely use round shaders anymore.. All Mags for me ;)

    • #26318

      i think ill like them better because you can fill in big areas at once and fill in tiny areas too if you turn it can also have a better handle on your values if youre doing some realism….i havent even used one and i can tell they are a lot better. have you used to curved mags yet? i hear they are awesome too

    • #26319

      Also i would work off of the tip instead of letting your needle hang out until your hand gets to be more steady and then you can slowly run it out.. When working off of the tip you don’t wanna see any needle coming out of the tip then take your thumb and press down the armature bar to expose the needle about the thickness of a nickle or a little better.

    • #26320

      i did do that! lol because i was working on a fake skin i read you should do that

    • #26321

      Hey Christa welcome aboard! Feel free to jump in and join the convo’s.

      ask away…

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