Every consultation is unique, but at the end of the process, you and your artist will have determined your goals for the tattoo, the design concept, and how your ideas coincide with your artist’s style. You and your artist are putting your heads together and collaborating.
Is it better for me to bring in finished art that I want done, or bring my ideas to an artist?
It’s best to bring in as many references as possible, so bring anything that you find inspiring. That can include photos, drawings, even small renditions of your idea that you did yourself. Anything that will help the artist determine what you want is helpful.
How long do I have to wait for an appointment?
It varies depending on the artist. Everyone has different wait times and scheduling concerns, so it’s best to arrange that with your artist directly. Some are available next week, but for others, you might have to wait a few months.
How much does placement matter?
It matters big time! One of the things you will determine in your tattoo consultation is the size and placement. The entire composition of the tattoo will change based on where it is placed on your body. It will flow differently and be designed differently depending on where you want it, as any good tattoo must fit on and flow on the body.
What should I do to get ready for my tattoo?
Have a good sleep the night before, and drink no alcohol the night before. Have a good meal before you come in, come ready with plenty of snacks with sugar, and bring hydrating liquids. You may also want to bring some headphones if that is something that will help you. But the most important things are: food, hydration and sleep.
How much will my tattoo hurt?
Tattoo pain varies so much depending on the person, and the placement. Everyone receives pain differently so this is such a hard question to answer. The best way to prepare for it, honestly, is to avoid thinking about it and try to distract yourself from it.
How long will my tattoo take to heal?
Depending on the type of tattoo, this varies from two weeks to two months. A full-colour piece of realism will take much longer to fully heal, whereas a small, dainty blackwork piece can take two weeks. It depends on how much trauma was done to the skin, how much ink went in, what area of the body the tattoo is on, and your individual body. Creases in the skin and places that sweat more also take longer to heal.
What is the best way to take care of my healing tattoo?
Different artists will give you different instructions, but generally: you want to keep your tattoo hydrated with a non-scented lotion; keep it away from the sun; keep it out of the pool or jacuzzi; and avoid submerging it in water until fully healed. You don’t have to keep it wrapped; in fact, you want it to breathe, but keep it very clean. If you have pets that sleep in bed with you, make sure you wash your sheets and have clean bedsheets when you first come home. As it heals, refrain from scratching it when it gets itchy (and it will!). When you feel itchy, apply more lotion. No picking! Instructions may differ if you are using Second Skin, which will allow you to swim, for example.
What will my tattoo look like as it ages?
This depends a lot on how it’s taken care of. Aftercare is very important for ensuring your tattoo looks great in the future
Do you do walk-ins?
Yes, we do! It depends on which artist is available at the time, and a few of our artists frequently do walk-ins. It will take the artists a bit to get the design ready so expect to do some waiting.
I have a scar, does this mean I can’t get tattooed?
It depends on the size and how old the scar is. If the scar is two years old or less or has keloid, then it is not recommended to tattoo over. But if it’s older and has no/minimal keloid, and is not raised, it can be tattooed over no problem.
Why do I have to protect my tattoo from the sun?
Sun exposure will fade a tattoo, there will be a loss of pigmentation due to UV rays so the quality and clarity of the image will degrade over time. It is very important to use sunblock because of this. A freshly done tattoo is especially vulnerable. Heat itself is also not good for a fresh tattoo.
Can I get a tattoo if I am anxious?
The artists at Grapevine are extremely chill, and there are for sure accommodations that can be made if you are anxious. This can mean using privacy screens, wearing headphones, and taking breaks when you need one to a reasonable degree. We are always a call or email away if you have any questions about accommodations.
What do you think are the “right” reasons to get a tattoo?
Appreciation for the art is the main reason to get a tattoo. Lots of people try to put a bunch of meaning in, and that’s fine, but the best clients appreciate the art and the artist’s work, and that is what is most important to them
How can I tell if I will love my tattoo 20 years from now?
Choose something that you have put thought into, choose an artist whose work you absolutely love, and do your research. Make sure that the proper collaboration is done during the consultation, so make sure your artist knows what you want. If they get your desires and your ideas, so there is good communication, you will love your tattoo forever.
Should I get a tattoo of someone’s name?
No. The exception to this is if it is your child or your parents. Do not get a tattoo of your significant other. The best way to represent someone on you is through symbolism; imagery that represents someone is a much better way to go to honour them. It doesn't have to be a word or name. If you’re dating or married to someone, and you really want to get something, and they’re really into tea, for example, get a teacup or a teapot. That’s much easier to feel good about no matter what the future might bring.
Should I get a matching tattoo with someone I love?
There’s nothing wrong with that at all. Getting the same or similar tattoos with someone is fine
Why do some people think tattoos are shameful or tacky?
It’s a stigma based on older traditions that don’t really apply to society today. This is a conservative viewpoint, and we live in a very free and open society with more artistic freedom and an appreciation for individuality. Tattoos are one way to separate and differentiate yourself. People might think tattoos are shameful or tacky because they don’t understand them, and don’t understand individualism.
My boyfriend/mom/boss hates my tattoo, now what?
If someone doesn't like your tattoo that is entirely their issue. If your tattoo was done with the right aforementioned criteria, then you should not care what they think. If you love your tattoo that’s all that matters.
I want a tattoo in a language I don’t speak, will you translate it for me?
No. Everyone is responsible for figuring out the meaning of their own tattoo. We are not responsible for knowing what something means.
Will you tell me crazy tattoo stories during my appointment?
That is entirely up to the artist. Some artists don’t like to talk much while they are tattooing because they need to concentrate, and some will even wear headphones. Others may be more talkative. Whatever way your artists likes to work, it is important to leave them to that so you get the best tattoo
What if it hurts too much and we have to stop?
There is no problem with that, if you need to stop an appointment we can always reschedule and continue later.
Who owns the tattoo, the artist or the person who gets it?
The person who gets it.
I love my tattoo! What is the best way I can tell everyone about who did it for me?
The best way is to make sure you tag your artist and the studio in any photos you post on social media. Tagging is super important! Also, grab some of your artist’s cards and give them to people who ask about it.
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