How to become a tattoo artist for beginners

3 min


At the beginning of their journey, what matters to every beginner is becoming a tattoo artist; however, what most uncover with time is being a good tattoo artist is what matters. Yes, you may be able to draw and joke fun, but the truth is that is not enough. Being a good tattoo artist is an impressive art that could take years to master. But this should not discourage the first-timers because even the experts started somewhere. So, where should you begin? We will share with you some secret tips you will need as a beginner. 

1. Learn to draw

‘But I can draw’ is the justification most beginners give when they are asked to learn to draw. As a tattoo artist, you will have to draw different designs to know particular drawing techniques. When we tell you to draw, we mean exploring the various drawing methods and art movements. By looking at the work of other experts, you can come up with our unique drawing style. You also need to practice your artistry skills; this allows you to become better and perfect your art. 

2. Build your portfolio

When customers are willing to let you work on their bodies, you can bet they have done their research. They have looked at examples of your work and approve of it. See why a portfolio is essential? Tattooing is one business where you work sells itself. To make it easy for clients and build your client base, you should create a portfolio with your works, experience, and skills.

3. Get licensed

Tattooing is a career path like any other, thus to work as a professional tattoo artist, you must be licensed. Whether you are employed or own a shop, many states require tattoo artists to have a license that certifies them as competent and working in a safe and sanitary environment. After your training, you can get your certification because it is a requirement for most employers hiring tattoo artists. 

4. Work under someone

Amidst every tattoo artist’s dream is opening their shop. Everyone wants to be a boss and create their customer base. Breaking out on your own is, however, not something to take on right off apprenticeship. Opening a shop requires a firm grasp of the business, not just being able to draw. Working under someone is a stepping stone that can help you sharpen your skills and become a master. You can learn a lot of the business aspect of running a shop by being employed in one. 

5. Buy your supplies

Like every writer who needs their pen, every tattoo artist needs their supplies. Employers do not necessarily provide supplies, so; you will need your gear. There is equipment you need to complete your kit when you are a tattoo artist. A tattoo machine, power supply, foot pedal, clip cord, tattoo lining tube, lining needle, and ink caps are essential. 

You will find different equipment in the market; thus, it falls upon you to choose one particular to your needs. However, here are some of the best tattoo machines for new users to give you a kickstart; aluminium and steel tattoo machines. As a newbie, machines made from these materials will be lighter and easier to handle compared to those made from copper and iron.  

6. Keep up with trends

Most people who want tattoos have their designs picked out. Sometimes the design may be unique; other times, it could be a trend. Trending designs are common in the tattooing industry, and you can lose business simply by not knowing what is popular. So even if you want to draw unique and different designs, delivering your client’s wants should be a priority. You cannot force your client out of their idea, so the trick is to bring your signature into it. It does not hurt to know what is trending and practice; you can then find ways to stand out while doing trends. 

7. Welcome criticism

Tattooing is artistry. It involves creating art and being vulnerable to share it. Sharing your art exposes you to criticism. Having your work judge as not good enough may be a hard pill to swallow, but it builds up for improvement. Seeking the opinion of others more so, seasoned artists in the profession, and listening to them allows you to learn and do better.   

Being a tattoo artist is hard work. Passion and dedication are the foundation you need to establish a solid tattooing career. These aside, there are things you need to know to become a good tattoo artist.  In the price above, we have addressed some guidelines on becoming a tattoo artist and a good one at that. Implement them in your tattooing journey and watch your career take off. 


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