Guide: How to Become a Professional Tattoo Artist? 2024

To become a tattoo artist, there is no one-size-fits-all approach. While most career opportunities include some sort of academic training. However, an ambitious tattoo artist is required to complete an apprenticeship.

Tattoo artists are specialists who use specialized needles to create and apply tattoos to all parts of their customers’ bodies. It’s possible that tact and tolerance will be necessary while interacting with consumers. Because certain designs require a lot of time to construct, long hours of waiting are mostly a component of the job.

How To Become a Professional Tattoo Artist?

For your clear guidance here are the steps to follow to become a tattoo artist.

1. Learning Basic Drawing Skills

Learning Basic Drawing Skills

The process starts with learning basic drawing skills, and this learning of basic skills also contains some steps to follow.

Get To Know About Shapes:

Learning basic drawing skills always needs the introduction of all the geometrical shapes. You should know every single shape and what shape they give when they are overlapped. Moreover, you should know how to play with the shapes and create some new shapes and forms.


Exploring is a very important step in art. There is no boundary for the art, so you can explore it up to where you want. Explore new shapes, new ideas and new mediums. Exploring will make you creative and aware of the current and past works of artists. As nowadays snake tattoos are getting famous, you can also explore more new trends.

Make an Inspiration:

In art, every artist and masterpiece is derived from inspiration. The inspiration can be derived from the past work of any artist, nature or self-thoughts. So you must have an inspiration behind your art.

2. Professionalize Your Art:

After learning the basic skills, it is time to get the proper education and learn professional art skills. Basic skills will help you learn professionalism, but you have to consider the following steps.

Join an Institution:

Joining an institution for learning art skills is always a good idea. But you need to be careful in the selection of a good institution.

A Good Institution Should Have:

  • Appreciative staff
  • Skilled and experienced teachers
  • A healthy competitive environment
  • A good students strength
  • Availability of required labs tools

3. Learn Fundamentals of Art

Learn Fundamentals of Art

The design and designing process starts with the fundamentals. In fundamental principles, you will learn how basic shapes are derived to designs, how you can create intensity, focus, and symmetry in your designs. After joining the art institution, you have to pay good attention to learning design fundamentals. As a result, you will have a strong foundation and good concepts.

4. Develop Your Creativity

Creativity is a God gifted thing, but you can also make yourself creative by exploring and learning new ideas. Hard work is the only key to groom your skills, so never be afraid of it. Consult your teachers and know you can excel in it.

5. Get Your Degree

After learning design and drawing skills, now is the time to get your degree. It will also help you in creating a solid portfolio and CV.

6. Continue Practicing & Exploring

Becoming a tattoo artist is not a short process. You have to do continuous practice and explore new ideas. A good artist never stops learning because stopping is just resisting new things. So after getting a degree, you need to be persistent and practice.

7. Make Your Portfolio

There is no easy way to stand out among so many talented tattoo artists. So every designer needs a portfolio to demonstrate their skills. Making a good portfolio is an additional mark to your position. It also shows your experience & skills in the field. Before creating portfolio, you should consider some dos and don’ts to avoid mistakes.

Dos and Don’ts:

  • Your portfolio should be simple in design.
  • Don’t compromise on quality. Try to compile the best work in your portfolio and avoid comprehensiveness.
  • Be sure to tell about each of the projects you mention. You don’t need to mention a complete detail. Just try to tell a bit of each.
  • The pictures you add to your portfolio should express pleasing aesthetics and photography skills. A good picture always gives a positive and convincing attitude.
  • Keep it updated. Be sure to remove outdated work when it no longer represents your best work.
  • Always add the best work that you have done as projects. Also, compile the feedback from your clients to convince people to trust you and your work.

8. Work With Experienced Artist

There are many technicalities in dealing with tattoo-making machines. You can’t learn them just by reading instructions, so go to a professional and work with him. A professional tattoo artist knows every single thing about dealing with them. He can make you learn all necessary steps while working with equipment. By working with them, you will know the suitable types of equipment and also the aftercare tips of tattoos.

9. Go for Apprenticeship

Go for Apprenticeship

First stage in becoming a tattoo artist is to complete an apprenticeship. A formal apprenticeship is similar to enrolling in a trade school—you do it for the skills and information you’ll gain, the contacts you’ll establish, the certification you’ll get, and your professional résumé.

Apprenticeships are difficult to get, difficult to prepare for, and difficult to pay for. This post will explain the benefits of obtaining a tattoo apprenticeship as well as how to go about obtaining one. An apprenticeship is required to become a tattoo artist.

The most important reason is that most states require a tattoo artist or piercer to have a license. You’ll need an apprenticeship since most licenses need training, and one of the few ways to receive training is to work as an apprentice with a licensed artist.

  • Make yourself fully trained
  • Learn from your mistakes
  • Get certifications and license

10. Get Your Career Started

Once you are done with all these steps now it’s time to start your own business. Try not to forget your experiences and make new and good experiences by working extraordinarily.

  • Here you have two options to consider
  • Start working as an Employee
  • Establish your own business

How Old Do You Have To Be To Get a Tattoo in Texas?

Many parents, as well as teenagers, are interested in knowing when they can obtain tattoos. Someone under the age of 18, maybe allowed to get a tattoo without your permission, depending on where you reside. Some states prohibit a teen from getting a tattoo without parental authorization, while others have no such restrictions. That implies your adolescent might stroll into a salon and receive a tattoo or piercing.

Tattoo Training:

Extensive on-the-job training is typically necessary to become a tattoo artist. You must demonstrate a high degree of passion and devotion before a respected studio would accept you for training, as competition for such roles may be fierce.

You must also have a good degree of sketching ability and be able to provide a portfolio of your designs to be eligible for tattoo artist training. Its training can go up to five years. All operations must be seen before being attempted. During this period of observation, you will most likely not be compensated.

Drawing Tattoo:

Drawing Tattoo

A great drawing necessitates the use of appropriate resources that allow you to create the best sketches possible. To become a tattoo artist you should do your best in this art. Working on a computer is required: to make the most stunning tattoos, you’ll need the correct graphic design program.

To better adapt to each person’s body, tattooists used to take a picture of the portion of the body to be inked and then trace their design over it with tracing paper to assure accuracy. “If it’s a sleeve tattoo a back and neck tattoo, you’ll design separately.”

According to tattooist Laura Jones, “the shape of the anatomy is varied, but you need to design with these in mind.” Be aware that to utilize this program, you’ll need a compatible graphics tablet, which can rapidly become a major hurdle for a designer who isn’t used to utilizing graphics tablets.

Beginner Tattoos:

Beginner Tattoos

The first step in becoming a tattoo artist is to study how to sketch. The “peak” of your abilities as a tattoo artist is your skill to sketch. You will be able to tattoo more if you are willing to sketch well. Fortunately, if you follow the instructions, you can speed up the training process:

Classical tattoo designs and naturalism are both excellent grounds for aspiring tattoo artists who wish to improve their abilities quickly.

Tattooing on workers is not a good idea. That’s why there’s artificial skin. Training on artificial skin drastically minimizes the number of terrible tattoos you get early on in your career.

It’s time to find out “Needle depth” when you’ve chosen the proper needle to utilize. The term “bullet depth” originally referred to how deep the needle penetrates the skin. It’s crucial to have the appropriate tattoo needle level not only to avoid discomfort, blowouts, and scarring but also to ensure that the ink in the tattoo’s picture is clear and long-lasting.

Illustration Tattoo:

Illustration Tattoo

Anything that resembles a book image or artwork is considered an illustrative tattoo. There are several types of illustrative tattoos, just as there are numerous types of art styles. This is one of the most popular tattoo styles today. Illustrative tattoos are inspired by both traditionalism and realism.

They usually have solid black outlines, similar to conventional tattoos. Instead of being colored to resemble photo-realistic, an illustrative tattoo should have a sketched, animated quality to it. These tattoos rely heavily on imagination and a dash of whimsy.

Many illustrative tattoos are done in black work. To give complexity and dimension to these patterns, tattoo artists may utilize lines, cross-hatching, and stippling. Tattoos with illustrative black art might have a striking visual appearance.

Easy Tattoos To Draw On Yourself

For an easy activity, draw on temporary tattoo paper. Purchase temporary tattoo paper that may be used in a printer or for drawing. Draw your tattoo with pens or permanent markers, but keep in mind that it will flip when it is applied to your skin. That implies that any words you type will be reversed.

Temporary tattoos are a terrific method to have a sense of how a permanent tattoo will appear before you get one. With the paper transfer method, you may also use a gel pen. Finally, you may always use a permanent marker to deepen your pencil tattoo after it has been applied.

Getting simple tattoo designs like star tattoo designs might be difficult for many individuals. There are a lot of individuals out there who get tattoos but have no idea how to draw them or where to acquire fantastic tattoo ideas, so they end up with something less than ideal. It is such a waste, and people should be aware of how to avoid it.

View more ink drawing ideas, ink drawings, and tattoo designs. This is an easy-to-understand ink drawing design, however, all outstanding design ink drawings appear to be very engaging.

How To Become a Piercer?

Body painting is becoming a tattoo artist increasingly popular across the United States. People are having tattoos and piercings in greater numbers, and they’re coming up with unique tattoo styles and designs. People are willing to pay a lot of money to have skilled experts punch holes in their bodies for the sake of fashion and art. To become a piercer, follow these steps:

1. Expand Your Knowledge:

Knowing a lot about piercing is the first step toward becoming a piercer. You may learn more by watching videos on the internet, or attending a conference or training sessions. Learn as much as you can about the industry and make sure you truly want to be a piercer.

2. Look For an Apprenticeship:

Look for a piercer who is eager to teach you. The best approach to learn how to pierce is from a respectable studio’s highly competent, and experienced specialist.

3. Attend Classes on Health and Safety:

Take training from nationally recognized organizations like the Red Cross, OSHA, or the National Safety Council on blood borne diseases, first aid, and CPR for health & safety.

4. Work as a Trainee For Three Months:

Learn all there is to know about piercing studio sterilization, disinfection, and other health and safety concerns.

5. Before You May Be a Piercer, You Must Work as an Apprentice For at Least Six Months:

You will require six months to a year of supervised work as an apprentice. Your training piercer will ensure that all piercings are done correctly and will educate you on how to execute each type of piercing.

6. Obtain a License From Your State or County:

Body artists, such as tattooists and piercers, must be licensed in many states. Your area’s criteria should be known by your senior or training piercer. Its all how to become a tattoo artist.

Some Useful Tattoo Artist Tips:

It’s important to remember to tip your tattoo artist. If you’re wondering why that is, and how much of a tip you should give your tattoo artists, keep reading. While a select handful has achieved superstar status, the majority of tattoo artists are small company owners or self-employed individuals who rely on their skills to make a livelihood.

To begin, it’s critical to recognize tattooing for what it is: a very individualized service. When you hire a tattoo artist, you’re enlisting their artistic vision and requesting that it be permanently imprinted on your body. Not only should you pay them for their services, but you should also tip them.

Consider your tattoo artist as a single artist or a small company owner to have a better understanding of the financial strains they encounter daily.

It costs a lot of money to run a tattoo parlor. You tattoo must cover the costs of materials, services, software, rent, utilities, and promotion in some way. None of this comes close to adequately compensating tattoo artists for their time, talent, and services.

Taxes are still another factor to consider. If your tattoo artist is self-employed, it means they must deal with the IRS on their own rather than having taxes deducted automatically from their paychecks.

This frequently results in owing the government a large sum of money during tax season, and your advice can help ease the pain.

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