“The talent is in the choices.”
Robert de Niro

 


A DIAMOND IS NOT FOREVER! A TATTOO IS!

Those who are about to get their first tattoo always have a number of questions, sometimes dictated by a lack of knowledge but also by indecision and/or insecurities, that are basically always the same. Here below you will find some fundamental and pretty exhaustive information that hopefully will help you avoid making the most common mistakes, they will make us save time and will make our meeting more productive. Even those who are not new to tattoos will probably find some interesting info.
 
Money, time and pain mean nothing if compared to an artwork that will stay with you forever! Don’t make the mistake to get one that’s not worth it… your skin deserves the best!!!
 
A TATTOO LASTS FOR LIFE. IT’S WORTH MUCH MORE THAN A JEWEL!
IT’S BETTER IF IT’S UNIQUE LIKE YOU!

I take it seriously and I invest in it all my experience and my passion to give you the very best!
So I ask you to spend a little of your time to get informed before you get a tattoo.
 
An informed choice is always the best choice.

TECHNICAL INFO

WHAT A TATTOO IS
A tattoo is considered minor surgery and consists in introducing different kinds of pigments into the skin. To remove it it’s necessary to recur to surgery. One may be or may become allergic to pigments or metals.
 
RESTRICTIONS
It is not possible to tattoo on skin that has an ongoing inflammatory process and on moles.
In order to get a tattoo, you must not: suffer from heart disease, epilepsy, have a Pacemaker, be under the influence of alcohol or drugs, have physical or mental impediments which may affect your health and the decision to get a tattoo. Moreover, tattoos are not carried out on pregnant women and those who show signs of transmissible diseases such as tuberculosis, scabies, syphilis, gonorrhea, smallpox, measles, rubella, etc. If in doubt you must present a medical certificate,
If you are a donor you cannot donate for 12 months from the date of the tattoo.
 
ORGANS INVOLVED
 
SKIN: a tattoo is a wound, even if superficial.
 
ADRENAL GLANDS: they will produce adrenaline, its production increases blood pressure, the ability of muscles to work and the amplitude of breathing, allowing the body to react to external situations of anxiety or concern.
 
BRAIN: as a normal reaction to pain, it will produce endorphins, morphine-like substances which play a key role in reducing pain sensitivity. Therefore, when the tattoo is over it will be normal to feel a little tired, especially after a long session.
 
POTENTIAL COMPLICATIONS
Potential complications resulting from tattooing reported in literature are relatively rare, considering its current popularity and diffusion.

  • Allergic Reactions: tattoos may cause individual allergic reactions.
  • Granulomas: nodules that form around the injected material which the body perceives as foreign.
  • Keloids and hypertrophic scars: the formation of excessive scar material in the healing process of a wound. The most prone anatomical areas are chest, shoulders and neck. These reactions are often caused by the non-observance of basic tattoo aftercare rules and/or the irresponsible direct exposure to the sun during the healing process.
    These can be treated, within 6 months from execution, with ointments, patches, and pressure therapy. Within 3 months they can be treated with homeopathic products. Consult your doctor or a dermatologist for further information.
  • Complications from nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR): there have been cases of interference with the quality of the images.
RESPONSIBILITY
The Tattoo Studio respects fundamental rules of hygiene. It’s the tattoo studio’s responsibility to prevent infections on the treated area.
 
We certify that:
• Needles, tubes, creams and ink cups are sterile and disposable.
• The working area is sterile and hygienically suitable.
• All equipment and supplies are highly professional.
• All colours are tested and completely suitable for use.
 
COLOURS MSDS
Colours used in this studio are hypoallergenic and are accompanied by MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheets). Due to the large amount of documentation it’s not possible to provide each customer with a printed copy of these data sheets.
By clicking on the link below you will be able to download a compressed file containing all the MSDS of the colours and stencil application fluids used in this studio.
Colours_MSDS.zip
 

BEFORE YOU GET A TATTOO

AGE
There are almost no age restrictions.
According to Italian law people under 16 cannot be tattooed and those between 16 and 18 must have parental consent but no minors are tattooed in this studio! Without exception!
 
That said, there are other age-related factors that must be considered. Skin becomes thin over the years, in particular elderly people who decide to get tattooed, especially if they want something big, will have to consider undergoing a larger number of short sittings in order to avoid damaging the skin.
 
ETIQUETTE
For some unknown reason there seems to be a belief that the etiquette of tattoo studios is different from the common rules of conduct followed in other places… THIS IS NOT THE CASE! When you’re in a tattoo studio you should behave with the same sense of decorum and politeness that you use in any other place!You are the customer and we strive to provide the best service to make your experience enjoyable. On the other hand, we have the right to expect you to behave in a civil, courteous and respectful manner. Your goal and ours are the same: creating the artwork you want in the best possible way. So here is a list of things you should and SHOULDN’T do when you enter a tattoo studio.

  • Try to have some ideas about what you would like to get. You can come to get help finding subjects of course, but you should have a project that drives your decision to get a tattoo. The better you describe what you want, the easier it will be creating the design for you.
  • A tattoo studio is NOT somewhere you go to to hang out… If you are not serious about getting a tattoo, avoid wasting our time!
  • DO NOT go to a tattoo studio if you have been drinking or if you are under the influence of drugs. Show up sober! No one likes to work with crazy people! If you are “high” you will not get tattooed, at least not by someone with a reputation.
  • DO NOT try to bargain with your tattoo artist as if you were at a flea market. Bargaining with those who are working for you is bad taste and a lack of respect that will annoy the artist. The last thing you want is the artist to be in a bad mood when he tattoos you.
  • If you have a limited budget you can ask the artist to do the tattoo in multiple sittings. If you decide to get something cheaper and smaller than what you originally wanted you will certainly regret it. Remember: beautiful tattoos are not cheap and cheap tattoos are not beautiful. Those who go from studio to studio searching for the cheapest one have ugly tattoos.
  • DO NOT ask the artist to draw something just to get an idea or just to satisfy your curiosity. The time spent drawing for you is not free and if you don’t know what you want or you’re not ready to pay the price of a professional service please avoid wasting our time.
  • Pay attention to hygiene. Unfortunately, there are people that need to be told! There is nothing worse than having to do with someone who is not clean. You don’t go to the doctor’s without taking a shower, then do the same for your tattoo artist.
  • DO NOT bring a “support group” with you! No artist wants to deal with a bunch of friends who crowd the studio while he is trying to discuss or draw your tattoo.
  • DO NOT bring children to the tattoo studio, it’s not a suitable place for them! Children get bored, they need to move and they are curious. The last thing you want is your child strolling around the studio touching supplies that could be dangerous for him/her. Moreover, concentration and calm are needed in order to work on your tattoo. A child would be a continuous distraction, for you and the artist.

All this should be common sense but reality is different and the tattoo artist sometimes finds himself having to do with people who don’t respect these simple rules of conduct. Do him and yourself a favour, next time you visit a tattoo studio use some common sense and decency. A little courtesy and etiquette will make the experience much more rewarding and enjoyable for both of you.
 

YOUR TATTOO
First of all remember that a work on skin is not an item of clothing that you can change whenever you want. A tattoo is forever! Therefore choose the very best!
 
Luckily, more and more people see tattoos for what they really are, art on skin! Those who believe tattoos have nothing to do with figurative art are mistaken. Tattoo art uses a different medium compared to traditional art media but the concept is the same, creating figurative artwork.
 
In recent years tattoo art has reached a once unimaginable diffusion, consequently, the range of choice has increased but at the same time the risk of choosing the wrong tattooer has also increased, a mistake that would have very unpleasant repercussions. Imagine having on your skin something that doesn’t convince you, or even worse, something you feel ashamed of, that every day will be there to remind you of your mistake and make you feel uncomfortable.
Imagine instead of how you feel when you wear nice clothes and everybody compliments you, it’s a very pleasant feeling don’t you think?
The more you’re sure of what you want and that the artist you have chosen is the best available one to create your project, the more you will be sure of obtaining an artwork that will satisfy you over time, avoiding your tattoo becoming the fuckup that makes everybody laugh except you. Your tattoo has the power to make you feel better if chosen carefully and is artfully executed by the right artist.
 
SIZE AND COLOUR
If you think that the tattoo you have chosen is small enough to be eventually removed by laser or covered with a larger tattoo or because you don’t want to spend too much, avoid getting one!!!
Nowadays tattoos can be removed with laser (see related article), but it’s not a pleasant procedure, there’s no guarantee that they will disappear completely and generally one doesn’t choose to decorate his/her skin and then remove everything after some time. You could also cover it in the future with a larger, more beautiful and elaborate tattoo, but wouldn’t it be better to make the best choice right from the start?
 
Often, people who are planning of getting their first tattoo choose something very small and not too elaborate fearing that, over time, they will grow tired of it and they will regret it. But those who choose a small tattoo usually end up regretting the very opposite, not having done it bigger and more elaborate in the first place.
What makes you think that by choosing something tiny and unattractive you will be able to stand the idea of wearing it even if you don’t like it anymore?
It’s almost certain that if you limit your choices you will end up regretting it.
 
Treat your tattoo and the choice you make with respect, in an intelligent and informed way. Don’t let others tell you what you should do, not even your best friend or your girlfriend/boyfriend. Your skin belongs to you only! Your tattoo will be there to remind you of the respect you have towards yourself and your skin, the reason why you did it, where and who did it for you; forever!
 
Those who decide to get their first tattoo are sometimes frightened by the idea of colour for the same reasons they are afraid of size. Sometimes it’s an unconscious fear linked to the memory of having seen ugly tattoos and one is afraid of obtaining a bad result, as if an ugly black and grey tattoo would be more tolerable than a coloured one.
The goal is to get an artwork, not the least bad!!!
Having said that, to clarify what’s best for you, think about art, what kind of painting would you hang on your wall? Do you prefer black and grey or coloured artwork? If you prefer black and grey paintings you may indeed have an attraction to this style but if you prefer a coloured painting, then a coloured tattoo is probably best for you.
 
Furthermore, the tattoo you are getting today may be the first of many, so make sure it’s done in a way that it can be extended in the future. It’s better to have an organic artwork than having a number of tattoos scattered all over your body.
 
Your tattoo is a companion that you will carry with you forever.
If you were looking for a life companion would you settle for someone slightly ugly and insignificant for fear of regretting your choice over time or would you rather look for the best available?
 
CHOOSING THE DESIGN
If you have decided to get a tattoo, you have probably thought of a design, then another and another. Maybe you have something in mind but haven’t found the design yet. You don’t need to find the design, you need to find a professional artist who is able to create what you want. If you want a tailored suit would you visit all the clothing stores hoping to find a suit with your exact measurements and is exactly how you imagined or would you go to a tailor who is able to create exactly what you want? If you’re smart enough you will choose the second option knowing that a good tailor has the necessary know-how, talent and experience to help and advise you in the creation of your tailored suit. As we say in Italy: “To each his own.”
 
Bringing some reference images with you may help the artist understand the kind of design you want. But don’t get hung up on the images and listen to the artist’s advice regarding what can and can’t be done and how it can be best achieved.
Avoid, as far as possible, entering a search in Google Images, you won’t find much of good quality. Go to the newsstand instead and buy a tattoo magazine, or better still, to a well-stocked bookstore and look for books about tattoos to get an idea of what is possible to do on skin and of the various styles from which you can choose. Also look for illustrated books and art books where you could find even more beautiful and original inspiration. Do not panic, it’s perfectly normal to be a little unsure regarding the choice of the subject, but if you widen your range of options you will also increase the chances of choosing something you will be proud of in the years to come.
 
Avoid asking a friend who is in art school or who can kind of draw to design your tattoo and at the same time avoid drawing it yourself unless you or your friend are really very talented or are professional illustrators and even in this case you have to keep in mind that drawing on paper is very different from drawing on skin. The fact that you spent hours or days drawing something you feel proud of (that a professional artist would probably do better in 10 minutes) doesn’t mean it’s nice and even if you can see thousands of meanings in that drawing, it doesn’t necessarily mean they are there, visible and/or well structured. A beautiful drawing with meanings is even more beautiful, but a thousand meanings won’t make a bad drawing beautiful. So find an artist who has the necessary knowledge and experience to develop and create your tattoo and let him guide you.
 
If you already have a design it doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s suitable for a tattoo. Almost anything can be tattooed, but a tattoo artist is not a printer. If you take a painting, which was probably drawn in a huge format, and you reduce the image with a printer to a ridiculously small size, it most definitely cannot be done. Again, a tattoo artist is not a printer and your skin is not a sheet of paper.
 
Avoid asking the copy of somebody else’s tattoo. Copying somebody else’s artwork is a lack of respect towards the artist that did it, towards the customer who paid to have a unique work, towards yourself and finally towards the artist who’s been asked to copy. No artist with ethics and a reputation will accept a similar request.
 
The best thing you could do is choose a unique tattoo. Ask those who have tattoos and in particular those who have beautiful tattoos, everyone will tell you the same thing: having something unique is the best decision you can make.
 
As for inspiration, there are an infinity of themes to choose from: hobbies, passions, art, your life, your philosophy of life etc. Tattooed and non-tattooed people, specialized magazines and if you listen to it even your common sense, will tell you that writing the name of the love of the moment, band logos etc. are to be avoided. Even if you don’t agree, in a couple of years you may have changed your mind on many things.
If you have an ironic tattoo in mind, what makes you laugh today may not be so much fun in a couple of months and in a couple of years you may even find it stupid.
Also avoid fashionable graphics or themes, some graphic styles lose their charm over time. Think about some cars, or design objects, they seemed beautiful when they first appeared on the market but after only a couple of years that design lost its charm to the point it becomes obsolete or even ugly.
 
Think of your body as a beautiful building and imagine walking by one day and seeing a fresco on that building, you would probably think that an artist completed the work.
Imagine instead of seeing that building covered in symbols and writings done with spray paint, you would probably think that some vandal defaced its walls, wouldn’t you?
So think carefully about the work you want and avoid vandalizing your body.
 
CHOOSING THE ARTIST
The choice of the artist depends on what you want on your skin, the style you prefer and your personal taste. So before choosing a tattooer over another look at his portfolio, if his portfolio doesn’t convince you don’t let him lay his hands on you, go away and look for another one.
There is nothing more stupid than choosing a tattooer because he is cheap, because he’s closer to home, because he has tattooed your friends or because he’s a friend of your cousin’s. An artist who is great at Japanese tattoos may not be as good at doing biomechanicals or portraits etc. Always remember, look at the portfolio of the artist by whom you want to get tattooed with the same critical eye with which you would look at an art book!!!
 
The portfolio is not a catalogue from which you can choose your design, but a collection of the best work the artist has done over the years. Something to look at to verify the artistic skills of the tattooer and understand if he’s the right artist for you.
 
Make sure the pictures are of good quality. Some pictures may not be too good for many reasons, the client was in a hurry, there may be reflections in the picture, some areas of a freshly finished tattoo are bleeding or maybe the client didn’t come back to take a good picture, but overall they must be able to give a clear idea about the quality offered by the artist.
You must like the designs, maybe the work is state-of-the-art but taste and the emotions provoked by an image are totally subjective. So make sure the images you see meet your taste. Verify the symmetry and placement of tattoos. A badly placed tattoo could mean that the tattoo was not carefully executed. A customer may have insisted on an unsuitable placement, but if the badly placed tattoos are many you ought to think about it. A good artist, if necessary, prepares the stencil over and over again until it’s perfectly placed.
 
Make sure the lines are not wobbly or irregular. There are designs that require lines of different thickness of course but you should be able to recognize good outlines.
The same applies to colours. Fresh tattoos are often slightly red and irritated but the skin doesn’t have to appear “mangled”. The area of a colour without any shading should be uniform and the grey shading should be soft and gradual.
 
After having verified that the portfolio shows the ability to do good tattoos, you then have to decide if he’s the right artist for you.
For example, if you want a pin-up, make sure he is able to draw human anatomy. Do not choose someone who doesn’t have a single drawing of a human figure. The same goes for portraits. If he claims to be able to do them and there is not a single portrait in his portfolio then something is wrong! The photo used as reference should be shown next to the tattoo, if you want your dad’s portrait you at least want it to look like him and not end up with some stranger’s face on your arm!
 
If you don’t see the type/style of tattoo you want, chances are that he has never done that kind of subject before or that he doesn’t want to do it.
This doesn’t necessarily mean that the artist wouldn’t take the job as a challenge doing a great job of it. But if there is something that an artist would like to do and hasn’t done yet, he will probably show some sketches of subjects he would like to tattoo so that potential clients can at least see that kind of artwork on paper.
 
A tattooer includes his best work in his portfolio, so, if in the portfolio there are plenty of tattoos that don’t convince you imagine what those he didn’t include are like!
 
When you look at a tattooer’s portfolio, not only is it important to look for the right artist but also to understand its value. Price is the last thing to worry about when it comes to tattoos, but one cannot completely ignore it. Like everything else, when you buy something you want to have an idea of the value of what you’re buying. If you think an artist is expensive he probably offers a higher quality and care compared to a cheaper one and this must be visible from the work he shows in his portfolio. This doesn’t mean that an expensive artist is suitable for the type of work you want, but you certainly wouldn’t go to the cheapest one just to save money. The psychological involvement of a tattoo is very high. Would you rather go to a cheap dentist or to one who is more expensive but much better at what he does? Quality has its price. No one sells you a castle for the cost of a hut. If you don’t see it that way, you’re values are whacked out so go and get some junk elsewhere!!!
 
In conclusion, look at as many portfolios as you can before choosing a tattoo artist who is suitable for you!
 
And remember to ask questions! As a Chinese saying says:
“He who asks questions is a fool for five minutes; he who doesn’t remains a fool forever”.
 
TATTOO PLACEMENT
With the ever massive diffusion of TV shows dedicated to tattoos, we are now accustomed to seeing people with tattoos in full view. When the tattoo is finished you’ll obviously want to show it to as many people as possible, but there may be occasions in which it would be better or you may want to cover them. So avoid neck and hands as your first tattoos. Not everybody is open to tattoos and you might trigger unexpected reactions in others. You will have plenty of time to do larger and more visible tattoos in the future when you have experienced what it means to have a tattoo, how others react to it and how you will react to it yourself.
 
That said, every area of the human body can be tattooed, but some drawings are best suited for some areas rather than others.
Areas of the body where the skin is thinner or has a distinctive conformation, where the ink can easily smudge over time (i.e. wrists, knees, elbows etc.), are probably not the best areas for particularly intricate designs.
 
The human body is not a flat surface like a sheet of paper, it has cylindrical areas, bumps and hollow areas that tend to deform the drawing. So trust the artist’s advice regarding the best areas to place the artwork.
 
COSTS
Many choices in life are dictated by the amount of money we can spend but this is the wrong way to approach tattoos. You have to get what you want, not what you can afford. When you have figured out what you want, the next step is finding the artist who is able to create it, not how much money you want or can spend!
You may sometimes think that the amount is too high for a tattoo but remember that tattoos, especially large ones, are done in several sittings so you can spread that amount of money over a long period of time. Furthermore, the tattoo artist is not a lending institution where you have to pay a precise monthly installment. The amount of time between sittings shouldn’t be excessive of course, an artist constantly improves and you definitely don’t want having to do with an artist who has become disenchanted with the piece or has forgotten how he wanted to colour it, develop it, etc. But several weeks, even a few months in case of large projects, can pass between one sitting and the other. Some tattoos even take years to be completed.
 
Do the math. Throughout your life you buy shoes, clothes, mobile phones and, to exaggerate, cars, spending large amounts of money on items that you will eventually replace or throw away. Tattoos cannot be replaced! So choose what you want regardless of cost. When you have the price get yourself organized, deciding the best time to start and how to spread the sittings over a period of time that allows you to meet the cost.
 
If you think that the best artist for your tattoo is located in England, Japan, the US etc. put some money aside and go there!
You should have what you want on your skin, not what you can afford at the time! Not only will you have what you want but you’ll have an exciting story to tell for life, a story drawn on your skin!
There’s no hurry, making the right choice is what’s important!
 

EVALUATION OF THE PROJECT

THE APPOINTMENT
Every tattoo artist follows a very personal creative method that may differ from others. The method adopted by this studio is the following.
 
Mondays, between 15:00 and 19:30, are reserved for the evaluation of new projects and for booking appointments. Those who live far from the studio can avail themselves of the same service via Skype (jerrymagni).
The meeting is not binding to the realization of the tattoo and it’s free of charge.
You can request an appointment through the contacts page.
Describe your idea in detail and, if applicable, indicate the tattoo/s that inspired you the most from the portfolio.
You can also attach reference images if needed.
 
We will reply in the shortest time possible, but among the many requests some e-mails may be forgotten or may end up in the spam folder. If you don’t get a reply within 5 days we kindly invite you to submit a new request.
 
The duration of the meeting is set at one hour per customer. This is usually the time needed to draft an outline for the project and to discuss details. Try to be on time. If you show up late, at the end of your hour, you will be invited to make room for those who come after you. If you show up early, to respect other’s privacy and considering the small size of the studio, you will have to wait for your turn outside.
 
If you are unsure of being able to show up please notify a few days in advance in order to schedule a new appointment. If you’re thinking of popping by just to get a general idea about the world of tattoos or to satisfy your curiosity you are invited to do some research on the internet! The fact that the meeting is free of charge doesn’t mean that we have time to lose!
 
Those who show up without an appointment shall not be taken into account.
 
DISCUSSION OF THE PROJECT
The purpose of the meeting is to listen to your idea, offer inspiration, information and ideas to best develop your project, evaluate its technical and artistic aspects, time management, cost evaluation, health information etc.
 
Some may be more confused than others or have very large and/or elaborate projects to discuss. If time is not sufficient to outline your project you can schedule a new appointment for one of the following Mondays. The maximum number of free consultations is two, from the third consultation you will be charged a fee based on the time dedicated to you.
 
If you are particularly confused/insecure and/or prefer to develop your project together with the artist in one or more dedicated meetings, perhaps to evaluate different options, we will fix a date in order to develop your idea in detail. These meetings will be charged by the hour.
 
THEMES and SUBJECTS
Before you continue reading you are kindly invited to read the following articles:
Tattoo Aging; The Importance of a Theme; A Few Words on Letterings.

 
Given the number of requests it is not possible to satisfy all of them. As an artist I try to constantly evolve and improve, so I give priority to projects that allow for greater artistic and stylistic freedom, size and placement.

Almost any type of request is welcome and could even be an interesting challenge. The portfolio should be useful enough to understand if I’m the right artist for the project you have in mind. If you can’t find what you’re looking for it may very well be that no one has asked for that kind of work yet.
 
My preferred subjects are those that fall into the figurative art category, with a preference for: biomechanical, cartoon, comic, gothic, surreal and realistic.
 
• If you have an ugly tattoo that you wish to cover we will evaluate whether and how we can take action, but no requests that involve the adjustment/improvement of tattoos executed by others shall be accepted.
 
I do not copy tattoos. Copying the work of another artist is ethically deplorable, it’s a lack of respect towards those who created the work, towards the customer who paid to have something unique, even towards yourself, and finally towards the artist whom you’re asking to copy. It’s a request that any artist with ethics and with a reputation will refuse to go along with! The work of others can serve as a source of inspiration or may be useful to learn the technique, never to copy.
 
• I avoid letterings because I firmly believe that an image is worth more than a thousand words. There may be some exceptions, such as a lettering well-integrated in the graphic design and/or that makes sense for the purposes of the work, or a lettering that in itself is conceived as a work of art, but I definitely avoid and advise against small letterings with characters taken from the computer.
 
• I don’t do tribals because I consider them codes of writing, often sacred to the people who created them, that I hardly know and therefore avoid to imitate.
 
• Whenever possible I advise against copying photographs or images downloaded from the Internet, or taken from a book or magazine, because they could be used by anybody else.
Obviously there may be times where it is inevitable to resort to public domain images, but even in those cases and to the extent possible, I try to use the images as a source of inspiration to create something new and unique.
 
It’s my job and sometimes I have to compromise with the client’s wishes and budget but the right balance for me is represented by the opportunity to create something unique and original for your skin, because I believe that everyone is unique in their own way.
 
If my style is not indicated for your project, when possible I will recommend the most suitable artist to achieve your vision.
 

KATZ
RECOVERIES In every project I try to give life in the best possible way to the customer’s ideas but there are limits that I consider insurmountable, in particular with regard to my KATZ.
The work of a tattoo artist is very similar to that of an illustrator, on the one hand there is the customer who presents his idea, on the other, the artist who uses his talent, experience, technical skills and style to develop a design that brings that idea to life.
A work of art is instead something that the artist creates without any external constraints.
My KATZ fall into this category. They are very personal pieces of art that I invented and developed over the years and that have subsequently met the taste of some customers who have asked me to tattoo them.
If you like them and decide to commission me one you will have limited powers to intervene.
You can give me basic indications of course: aggressive, sensual, dynamic, static etc. and to give me a better idea you can tell me which one among the many that I painted you like the best, after that I demand carte blanche.
I am not willing to accept any kind of imposition on my KATZ.
You either like them or you don’t. Full stop!
 
CREATION OF THE DESIGN
Once having figured out what you want and having agreed upon the design, a very schematic sketch will be done in front of you to illustrate how the elements will be placed; eventually you will be shown some pictures to give you a better idea of how the design will look like. After that, the drawing process will continue privately and you will be kept updated via email or whatsapp throughout the working process to make sure the design is exactly how you want it.
 
A number of dates will be set for the creation of the design. Until that date, and even after, avoid bombarding the artist with emails or text messages asking for updates. Being excited and impatient is understandable but it is not by stressing him out that you will obtain the best from you artist, on the contrary, you would risk putting him in a bad mood when he has to work on your design. You don’t want an artist who feels rushed but an inspired artist ;)
 
Should you change your mind about something during the drawing process it’s okay, but if you don’t really know what you want avoid asking for continuos changes simply to see if it can be done. Try to clear your head and make a list of what you would like to change before proposing anything and possibly try to do it before the drawing process has commenced or when the drawing is in an embryonic state. An artist puts his soul into what he creates, and when he considers the work finished it means that he gave his best and that he has already studied all the possible colour combinations, size, composition, changes etc.
If an idea is interesting, the artist will be the first to want to use it, but if he tells you that it doesn’t work it’s probably because he has already visualized it, while you’re suggesting it, before even attempting it. If you want to have 20 different versions of the work because you’re insecure, you should know that this implies a considerable amount of work that can not be included in the cost initially agreed.
 
The goal is to create something beautiful, unique, possibly meaningful, and this requires a lot of work. The creation of the design often takes longer than the tattoo itself. Replicating is easier than creating!
For this reason an advance payment is requested for drawings, which in any case is much less than what one might expect considering the amount of work involved. Moreover, it ensures that I don’t work for free for someone unscrupulous who may disappear with the drawing and get it done, badly, by someone without ethics. Such compensation will be assessed depending on size, amount of detail, complexity, colours etc.
 
If your project does not require the creation of a design or the design has to be executed directly on your skin on the day of the session, you will be asked for a deposit that will be deducted from the cost of the last session.
Payments must be made in cash at the end of each session.
In the absence of a deposit the appointment/s will still be scheduled, but if the deposit is not paid within 15 days the appointments shall be cancelled.
 
For projects that require multiple sessions we will schedule a number of dates at least 3/4 weeks apart, depending upon availability. This will allow to maintain a fluid workflow.
 
IF YOU CHANGE YOUR MIND
If you decide that you no longer want the tattoo or that you want to get it done somewhere else and until then the drawing process hasn’t yet commenced, the deposit will be refunded in full.
 
If before the drawing process has commenced you decide that you want a different subject, or that you want to change its placement or size, the project and quote shall need to be rediscussed.
 
If you change your mind in the course of production, a portion of the design fee will be retained, based on the work carried out up to that moment.
 
If you change your mind after the design is completed and ready to be tattooed, the design fee will be retained in full. If the night before the session you suddenly decide that you no longer want an eagle but prefer a unicorn instead it’s your problem.
 
I am open-minded, helpful, understanding and flexible enough to understand that each person has different needs and I’m open to evaluate each project and any special situations, but by following these guidelines we will avoid any misunderstandings and unnecessary waste of time. ;)
 

THE SITTING

PREPARATION
In the days preceding the tattoo it’s IMPORTANT to avoid consuming alcohol or taking drugs, if you are a smoker limit the number of cigarettes, avoid overeating or eating anything too elaborate. Diet is very important, should pimples form on the area to be tattooed you may not be able to get tattooed.
 
Do not overexert yourself, drink plenty of water and try to get a good rest. If your body is in perfect shape it will be easier for your body to produce endorphins, raising your threshold of tolerance.
 
In addition, to reduce the stress the skin will be subjected to, wax the area to be tattooed at least 48 hours before and apply some moisturizer. As an alternative you could also shave the area 24 hours before or on the very same day, but it’s important that you know that in this case body hair will start to regrow after a few days causing discomfort and itching that may compromise the healing process. Should you opt for waxing I suggest you get it done a couple of days before by a professional beautician in order to avoid potential folliculitis; in order to avoid it do not wear tight clothes after waxing and maintain good personal hygiene. Check lunar phases, hair grows much faster when shaved on a full or crescent moon.
 
• Prior to the sitting carefully clean the skin with a body scrub to remove potential layers of dead skin.
 
• If you are under treatment with any type of medication inform your tattoo artist before you book an appointment in order to schedule it after the treatment is over.
 
• If you’re a girl try to schedule the appointment far from your menstrual cycle, during their period many women become hypersensitive and even the slightest pain becomes unbearable, so avoid getting a tattoo during that time or in the days immediately before or after.
 
• Do not show up on an empty stomach, be sure to eat something at least a couple of hours before. In the event of a long sitting bring something to keep your sugar levels up, a soft drink may be enough.
 
• Avoid coffee and if you really can’t do without it limit its intake. If you usually drink coffee after meals it won’t be a problem but if you are one of those people who drinks a large amount of coffee during the day, it’s important that you limit its intake to the minimum. Caffeine stiffens the skin making it harder for your artist to work.
 
• Wear something casual and definitely avoid wearing your favourite clothes. During the procedure some drops of colour or blood may stain the clothes. Tattoo colours are difficult to wash off. I don’t think you’d want to ruin your favourite item of clothing!
 
Some people arrive early, sometimes excessively early. Honestly I prefer those who are 5/10 minutes late rather than those who are 20 minutes early (if not earlier). Remember, you’re not going to the doctor’s. I work by appointment only, so no one can steal your place.
 
THE FIRST TIME
If it’s your first tattoo you may feel a little nervous, don’t worry, it’s completely normal! The fear of pain, that will fade away almost immediately, unless you have chosen a particularly sensitive area, could leave room to another critical thought, perhaps only subconsciously; you know you are doing something that will irreversibly modify your body, this thought may increase the potential state of agitation. In this case, immediately report it to the tattoo artist. Even a short break is sufficient to avoid any pressure drops caused by tension.
 
PAIN
Pain Chart Pain varies depending on the area of the body you choose, areas with small amounts of muscle and close to the bones are the most painful but it’s usually bearable, sometimes it’s simply a little annoying. In any case, everyone has a different pain threshold, so it’s almost impossible to quantify it. If necessary, on the market there are creams and ointments that have an anaesthetic/soothing effect, a list of which is available under Creams. However, they are not recommended, in particular for tattoos that require long sessions, because they don’t allow the body to get accustomed to pain, so, when the effect vanishes, the pain becomes unbearable. While the extensive use of ointments ruins the final result.
According to Italian law, tattoo artists are not allowed to administer anything to you, so, if you really deem it necessary, you will have to get the product you deem most appropriate for your needs yourself.
Here on the right-hand side you can find out what are the most painful places to get a tattoo.
 
DURING THE SITTING
 
Rule no. 1. Don’t Move.
 
Rule no. 2. Don’t Move.
 
Rule no. 3. If I ask you to “Stand still”, it means you have broken the first two rules.

Remember that your skin is not a sheet of paper, even the slightest movement will make the rest of your body move too, so, to ensure the success of the work, it’s extremely important that you don’t move. There are people who constantly move, this will only extend the sitting’s duration and puts the success of the work at risk.
Imagine if someone were to continuously move the sheet of paper while you are trying to draw, or think about how hard it would be to draw in the car while the driver is driving on a bumpy road. This is what your artist has to face if you are constantly moving. Not only is it difficult to focus but it’s even harder to draw the lines or do shading properly.
 
Rule no. 4. If you have to laugh, cough, use hand gestures, scratch etc. let me know in advance.
Avoid making unexpected movements. A tattoo is definitely not painless, but it’s not torture either, many simply consider it annoying. When you want to take a break don’t hesitate to tell your tattoo artist.
This obviously doesn’t mean that you can interrupt him every 10 minutes. A short break every hour or so is normal and also welcomed by the artist, but constantly interrupting him would mean making him lose his concentration and making his job more difficult.
 
Rule no. 5. Complaining is useless.
Another thing that may put the success of your tattoo at risk is constant complaining. Getting tattooed isn’t exactly a pleasant procedure, but constant complaining negatively impacts concentration. Enthusiasm is contagious, exactly like intolerance. A person who constantly complains puts the artist in a psychological state of discomfort so he will likely try to get away from the situation by finishing the work quickly and, as you can image, being in a hurry leads to no good. So try to relax. The best way to control pain is breathing properly and if you know any relaxation techniques you are welcome to use them, otherwise try to concentrate on something else. If you are particularly sensitive I suggest you look for relaxation and/or self-hypnosis techniques up on the internet. A couple of days practice will be enough to familiarize yourself with such techniques and once you have mastered them, it will be easy for you to use them during the sitting.
 
Rule no. 6. Mobile phones must be left outside the operating room!
In recent years, many people live with their mobile phones “glued” to their hands. In the tattoo studio, it’s better that you separate from your mobile phone making sure it is switched off or set to silent and left outside the operating area.
Minding your own business on the phone while the artist is putting his best effort into the work that you will carry on your skin forever, besides being a lack of respect, is a distraction for both you and the artist and it can provoke involuntary movements making it hard for him to work.
If you have to make or take important phone calls, please make them before the session begins or during breaks.
 
Rule no. 7. Do not undertake any action.
The studio is an aseptic area and it must remain so, there are a number of procedures that the artist follows in order to avoid potential contamination. He knows what needs to be done, you don’t. Therefore, do not touch anything in his working area, even if your simply thinking of lending a hand, and before you do anything, ask!
Do not touch your tattoo during its execution. If your tattoo starts bleeding during breaks do not touch it but ask your tattoo artist to wipe it instead. This will prevent potential contamination.
 
POSTURE
If you think that the position you have to hold during the sitting is uncomfortable do not complain and don’t try to convince the artist to work in a position that is more comfortable for you. The tattoo artist is the one who needs to be comfortable not you. He knows what to do in order to achieve the best result and he’s the one who needs to be sufficiently comfortable in order to do precise lines and good shadings. If that means holding an uncomfortable position for a while think of how less important that is compared to the final result.
If the position is really so uncomfortable feel free to ask your tattoo artist to take more breaks, his aim is to have your skin sufficiently stretched and in a favourable position in order to do a great job, definitely not that of breaking your back ;)
 
CONVERSING WITH THE ARTIST
Some tattoo artists are chatter-boxes, others aren’t. If your artist is silent, do not force him to talk, it’s probably his way of concentrating and it’s not in your best interest to make him lose his concentration while he’s trying to do his job in the best possible way. Avoid useless and/or rude questions. Asking how much the equipment costs is considered bad taste. Asking whether there is any difference between a tattoo machine and another is a question with an obvious answer. A painter uses different kinds of brushes, a tattoo artist uses different kinds of machines.
One can talk about anything but the rule remains the same, count to 10 before asking a question of which you are not sure of and that the artist has probably heard a thousand times (you can find the answers to all your most obvious questions simply by looking them up on the internet). Think about whether you would ask the same questions to your dentist or mechanic, you probably wouldn’t. A tattoo artist is a professional figure like any other, his goal is to put you at ease and considering the informal situation it’s normal that some degree of complicity is involved but this doesn’t mean that you can treat him like your friend down at the pub or with less respect than any other professional figure.
 

AFTER

AFTERCARE
The success of your tattoo and its lifespan also depend on how well you take care of it during the first few days.

  • Once the session is over your tattoo will be covered with a medicated and breathable film that will protect your tattoo and that will need to be removed after approximately 24 hours.
  • Once removed, carefully wash your tattoo and pat it dry (preferably with a paper towel as cotton towels may leave lint that may stick to the skin causing small infections), then reapply the film you have been given taking care not to form any air bubbles.
    This cover, in addition to helping your tattoo heal, eliminates the disadvantages of old techniques.
  • The protective breathable film allows you to wash yourself without any problem, to wear the clothes you want without the risk of them sticking to your tattoo, it removes the need of having to constantly apply cream etc.
  • The film will detach by itself after a few days (approx 6/15 days). If it doesn’t detach by itself wait at least 15 days before removing it yourself. After that it will be sufficient to apply moisturizing cream for a few days in order to promote cellular regeneration.
  • After the film has detached, if the tattoo isn’t fully healed, carefully wash it with lukewarm water using anti-bacterial or mild soap taking care not to rub it excessively, then pat it dry with a clean towel and apply a thin layer of cream. Repeat this process 2/3 times daily (before going to bed, when you wake up and during the day accordingly). Prefer showers over baths, in either case avoid getting the tattoo wet for too long.
  • Avoid Direct sunlight, Saunas, Swimming pools, Beaches and UVA/UVB tanning lamps
  • Although the film acts as a protective barrier and has a good resistance, avoid scratching the tattooed area and wearing clothes that are too tight over the tattoo and be careful not to bump into it.
  • Once healed, continue regular cleaning and apply moisturizing cream 2/3 times daily for approximately 1/2 weeks.
  • In order to prevent any skin infection and/or irritation, on the day of the tattoo change your bed sheets, all the more so if you have any pets that sleep with you in bed. In the latter case avoid letting them stay on the bed during the healing period.

The average healing time of a tattoo is approximately 2/3 weeks. To be precise this is the time needed for wound healing to take place, but it will take approximately 60/90 days for the skin to completely heal and regenerate. But don’t worry, only the first 2/3 weeks are the ones during which you will feel a little discomfort and you will have to take care of your tattoo more carefully.

Should the protective film bother you, after having removed the first one that has been applied, you can take care of the tattoo using traditional methods.

TRADITIONAL METHOD
Until the flakes have fallen off by themselves, it’s important that you:

  • Immediately after or within 2/3 hours, remove the bandage. Gently wash the tattoo with lukewarm water using anti-bacterial or mild soap removing any clots of blood and/or colour, gently dry it (patting the area) and apply a thin layer of cream. As soon as blood or plasma come out, repeat the process. Continue until the plasma or blood cease to come out, this will significantly reduce the amount of scabbing and will speed up the healing process and make aftercare easier.
  • Gently wash the tattoo with lukewarm water 2/3 times daily and, if necessary, with anti-bacterial or mild soap, being careful not to rub it excessively, then pat it dry with a clean towel and apply a thin layer of cream. Prefer showers over baths, in either case avoid getting the tattoo wet for too long.
  • Cover the tattoo only if your work involves being in contact with dust (of any kind). Do not cover it with gauzes that would stick to the wound, but only use saran wrap (cling film) and remove it as soon as you can.
  • Avoid Direct sunlight, Saunas, Swimming pools, Beach and UVA/UVB tanning lamps.
  • Do not scratch the tattoo, do not rub it against tight clothes, only wear cotton or linen clothing in direct contact with the tattoo, do not remove flakes, avoid bumping into it. If the itching becomes unbearable during the healing process, do not rub or scratch the tattoo for no reason whatsoever, rinse it with fresh water and apply some cream instead.
  • Once healed, continue regular cleaning and apply moisturizing cream 2/3 times daily for approximately 1/2 weeks.

The tattoo may bleed but it will stop doing so within 2/3 hours. Any scabs must not dry out or get too wet otherwise they will tend to fall off prolonging the healing process and risking of ruining the tattoo.
 

Avoid exposing your tattoo to the sun even after it has healed. Sunlight splits colour molecules apart, a process that in the long run ruins your tattoo. Therefore, when you have to expose yourself to the sun, always protect your tattoo with a high protection sunscreen (at least SPF 30).
 

CHANGES OVER TIME
Skin is not as steady as a sheet of paper; it’s an elastic surface that is subjected to repeated daily stretching and movements, so it’s normal for the lines of your tattoo to slightly spread and lose definition over the years, almost like a photo that is slightly out of focus, especially where skin is thinner and subjected to more “stress”: knees, elbows, neck, wrists etc. For this reason small tattoos with lots of details are not recommended.
 
Furthermore, the body ages over time and the tattoo along with it, so the lifespan of your tattoo will also depend on how well you take care of yourself. Sports and moisturizing creams are obviously recommended to keep your body and skin toned over the years, not only for your tattoo but also for yourself.
 
However, ink and needle technology has improved a lot over the last few years so, unless you experience considerable and rapid weight gain/loss or other kinds of intense stress that may have an impact on your skin, the appearance of your tattoo shouldn’t change dramatically.
 
If you’re planning to start going to the gym or start a weight-loss plan, it’s best that you do so before getting tattooed. Imagine a drawing on a balloon, if you deflate it the drawing will become smaller but not necessarily in a uniform way, on the the other hand, if you inflate it the drawing will blow up becoming almost comical.
So if you have similar plans for your body, it’s best that you postpone the decision of getting tattooed until after having achieved your goal. While if you have been promising yourself to go on a diet or start a gym class for years without ever doing it… I don’t think there will be much of a problem :P
 
Remember that colour is not over but below the skin’s surface so the colour shade shall be directly interrelated to your skin tone.
For example, if you have a very dark complexion it will be hard to obtain bright colours. A good artist, however, will be able to help you choose the colours that work best for your skin tone and create the necessary contrasts to make the artwork as bright as possible.
 
Also remember that tattoo colours are just like any other colour. Sunlight splits colour molecules apart, tattoo pigments included. So, in order to preserve the artwork you’re wearing on your skin, it’s highly recommended that you protect your tattoo with a high protection sunscreen (at least SPF 30 or over) when you go out in the sun, especially if you like to sunbathe.
 
I also invite you to watch this fun video:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DMuBif1mJz0&feature=youtu.be
 
CREAMS
Thanks to the new technique there is no need to lubricate the tattoo daily but it’s still recommended to have a cream at disposal to be applied once the film has fallen off, especially if the tattoo hasn’t fully healed.
Bepanthen is relatively cheap and can be found in any pharmacy or drugstore.
On the market there are several other specific creams and lotions for tattoo aftercare, some may even be better than Bepanthen but unless you have a supplier close to you you will have to buy them online.
Here below you will find the links to their respective manufacturers.
It’s up to you to choose the one you think is best for you. If you have any allergies make sure you check the ingredients before you purchase them.
 
CREAMS
After Inked
Bepanthen
Biolabio
Easy Tattoo
H2 Ocean
Prontolind
Tattoo Aftercare
Tattoo Goo
 
ANAESTHETICS
Dr. Numb
Derma Numb
Emla
Face and Body
Ink Eeze
Super Numb
Tattoo Soothe
 

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F.A.Q. Frequently Asked Questions

  • F.A.Q.

    Select one of the questions at the side to view the answer

  • Is it possibile to tattoo over scars?

    It depends on the type of scar and on what you want to get tattooed. There are different types of scars, some are raised, others are thin, sometimes they can be so thin that tattooing over them could further damage the skin, other times they have a very different consistency and/or colour compared to the rest of the skin. In any case, except in exceptional cases, it’s possible to intervene on scars but keep in mind that a tattoo won’t make the scar disappear and in some cases it might even make it more noticeable.
    The best thing to do, first of all, is to consult a dermatologist and after having obtained a favourable opinion, evaluate case by case in person.

  • Do you use sterile and disposable needles?

    It seems incredible but there are still people who ask this question.
    
Of course I DO!
    All tattoo studios do, at least I hope so!
    I only use disposable equipment in my studio.

  • I'm under 18, can I get tattooed?

    According to Italian law people under 16 cannot be tattooed and those between 16 and 18 must have parental consent but no minors are tattooed in this studio! Without exception!

  • Can I bring some friends on the day of the sitting?

    I’d rather you come alone, I don’t like having people around who distract me asking me questions, making comments or making noise while I’m trying to concentrate on the piece of art that you will carry with you forever. But if you really need to you can only bring one person.
    In accordance with current health regulations, accompanying persons may not enter the operating area.

  • Can I listen to music with earphones or watch a movie on my tablet during the sitting?

    Although these are excellent ways to relax and maybe feel less pain, in my experience I’d rather avoid it. Usually who watches a movie or listens to music wearing headphones tends to move keeping the beat or, when watching a movie, moves in response to a plot twist or something that made him/her laugh.
    Moreover, movies in particular disturb my concentration. Should you deem it necessary we could try, but if I notice that you start moving or that it’s distracting me from working I reserve the right to make you take off your headphones or turn off the tablet.

  • I have my own tattooer, would you just make the design for me?

    NO!
    If you like my style and my designs why would you get them tattooed by someone else?
    Moreover, if your tattoo artist is not capable of creating a design I think you ought to ask yourself some questions and maybe consider changing tattooer.

  • What if I don't like the design?

    If you’re asking yourself this question you probably haven’t read the entire info section and still haven’t seen my portfolio to make sure that you like my style and that I’m the right artist for your tattoo.
    In any case, you will be kept posted by e-mail or whatsapp throughout the entire process to make sure the design turns out exactly how you want it. Should you change your mind completely during the working process, the estimate would obviously need to be rediscussed. I suggest you look at my portfolio and make sure you like my style.
    I’ve been drawing professionally since 1991 and I’m pretty sure I have the skills and experience not to disappoint you.

If you can't find the answer you're looking for, please contact me.