Every few days of so, someone usually wanders into the shop and acquires "how do you learn to tattoo?? 'cause I've been watchin LA ink, and man, I used to draw all the time and, man I can do that..."
To which normally I would explain about a apprenticeship and ask about a portfolio, and half the time people don't want to hear it and change the subject.
But lately, I have been calling these people out because they want to tattoo of all the reasons.
The reason most people want to tattoo is because of susposed easy work, or because they saw it on TV, and let's face it, it is a cool job. But first off, half these people couldn't draw a stick figure if their life depended on it, and the second do it for the status and perceived fame that comes with being a artist. Trust me, its hard work with no real glory.
The reason I got into tattoos is because I am a artist and to be quite honest, the opportunity to immortalize my art through tattoos had always appealed to me, was just too much to pass up. I had always wanted to tattoo, ask my mother. I used to draw everybody I knew and when everybody else was playing ps one, I was drawing and writing. I had always been different as a kid, and it only made sense that I'd be a artist/musician.
But the love of tattooing was engrained in me even before I realized that's what I wanted to do, and to this day I eat, sleep, breathe and bleed tattoos.
Its what I'm passionate about, and I always tell people, try and understand why I get possessive about tattooing: Its not for everybody, and people who don't belong in it are ruining the industry. The game is meant to be told not sold. It is a lifeskill which was meant to be passed on through careful instruction within a apprenticeship, and I went through hell with mine. It wasn't paid, I had to be there 30 hours a week, and I had to clean tubes, scrub floors, wash cars, run drugs and do any other misc shit they needed. I worked hard, and learned a lot, not only about tattooing, but life, hustlin, and. making money. Once my apprenticeship was over, I had worked hard to earn this skill and nothing can beat that feeling, I will tattoo until I can't anymore, that's for sure.
However if tattooing is your passion, and that's really what you want to do, just know its not going to be easy, people will try you, nobody will want you to do well and everybody will be tough on your work. But that's just what we had to go through, and its just to make sure your real, the industry doesn't need anymore people in it fucking the game up for us . Don't give up.
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