I want to get tattooed! What is the first step??

If you have an idea of what you want to get tattooed, the first step is to request a consultation. We will schedule a time to meet and discuss all the details of your idea. At this point you are welcome to bring in any and all reference material you have collected. You do NOT need to have an image of exactly what you want, the way you want it. That's why you are hiring a custom artist! Please trust that I will do everything I can to design a piece of art that you are 100% satisfied with. If you think you don't have an exact, fully formed idea, or you are  unsure about how it will come together, that's OK! Many of these questions and concerns can be cleared up during a consultation.

Once we have figured out what the subject matter will be, where it is going, how big it will be and all the other specifics, we will decide on a date to start the tattoo. At this time you will leave a deposit which is generally $200. This deposit will be deducted from the final cost of your tattoo. This means that if your tattoo requires multiple visits the deposit will be deducted from the cost of the final session.

Please see cancellation policy

In the time before your first appointment I will be working on an awesome drawing! In some cases I am able to provide a preview of the drawing via email or text, but most often the drawing is seen on the day of the tattoo appointment. 99.9% of the time people are totally happy with the design. Sometimes there will need to be a few tweaks to the image but these can usually be done immediately before the tattooing starts.

Does it hurt?

Well. Yes. But don't worry! It's not as bad as you are imagining. In fact it is far, far less painful than most people think. Consider all the people who have tattoos. Unless you ask about it specifically, VERY few of those people will mention the pain of the experience. Most of them have gone back for more!

Once the initial surprise of the first few dots of ink is past, most of your anxiety will be gone. You may still feel a little tense, since the sensation is a little uncomfortable but just stay calm. It is important to keep your muscles relaxed. Try not to tense up and "resist" the sensation. Let your mind clear and focus on your breathing! Here and here are two suggestions for some good breathing techniques that will help you stay relaxed and help to focus your mind elsewhere. Some clients find it very helpful to bring some music and headphones with them to help them find the "happy place" where they feel relaxed and at ease.

You may also want to purchase a product called Bactine. This is an over-the-counter mild anesthetic spray which, when used on a mild abrasion will alleviate some of the pain. This product is good for longer sessions of an hour or more. There are stronger numbing agents but they are NOT recommended. They have a very long prep time time, a very short duration and will alter the texture of the skin, possibly affecting the quality of the tattoo

Is it safe? How do I know if it is sanitary?

All of the equipment that we use is sanitized using medical grade sterilization chambers and disinfectant sprays. Needles, inks and other items that come into direct contact with the body are disposed of after each client. We take all the necessary precautions to ensure that you will not come into contact with any material that could pose a health risk. During your visit to the tattoo shop please feel free to ask about our sterilization process as well as any other questions you may have.

How should I care for the tattoo while it is healing?

It is a very easy process and will not interrupt your daily routine. Please see the aftercare page for a detailed explanation.

Do people ever have allergic reactions to the ink?

This is an EXTREMELY rare occurrence and in most cases, relatively mild when it does occur. However if you do have any allergies, extremely sensitive skin, or if you have any concerns about a medical condition, please consult your health care provider.

How old must I be to get tattooed?

You MUST be at least 18 years old. This is not negotiable. No exceptions, ever, for any reason. Period. The end.

What can I do to be prepared?

As, discussed above, it is important to stay as calm as possible. Don't psyche yourself out by imagining the worst of the worst. Remember: it's not THAT bad!

You should eat a good meal at least 2 hours prior to getting tattooed. This helps keep blood sugar levels normalized which will help you stay relaxed and prevent any light headed sensations. It's also a good idea to stay well hydrated. We have water available but feel free to bring your own beverages and snacks.

Its also good to think about the location of the tattoo and how you might dress to allow for easy access to the area of skin where the tattoo will be. Bathrobes, large zip-up sweatshirts and sarongs are great options that allow for easy tattooing while keeping covered.

What medical conditions could complicate the tattoo process?

These are limited to a very small handful but they may be a concern. Please consult your health care provider if you have any concerns about this issue

Can I get tattooed if I am pregnant or nursing?

Generally it is NOT recommended to get tattooed while pregnant and some tattoo artists are not comfortable applying ink during the nursing phase either. Please contact your health care provider for any further questions.

How much will it cost?

Tattooing is calculated at an hourly rate. My fee is $180 per hour with a $100 minimum

I am not slow by any means but I won't rush through artwork that will be with you for a lifetime!
Beyond that, it is nearly impossible to quote an accurate price for any given tattoo before a drawing has been made. VERY rough estimates can be made based on size and subject but there are an incredible number of variables to consider. Much like the question, "how much does a car cost?" the answer depends on too many things to be accurate.

Once a design has been drawn, a price estimate may be slightly more accurate but there are still many considerations. Everybody is different in how they handle getting tattooed. Some people like to take more breaks, some people need to shift and move a little more to remain comfortable. Some people have much stretchier skin or tougher skin and all these things will add time to the effort of tattooing.

What happens if I need to cancel my appointment?

No problem! I only ask that you provide a minimum of 48 hours notice, prior to your appointment.
Please see cancellation policy

Is there a fee for having a tattoo designed?

There is no fee for the consultation or for the process of designing a tattoo. You will only be paying for the time you are getting tattooed.

Can I bring my own design?

You are welcome to bring any and all reference material that you think is relevant to the subject matter of your tattoo. If you have an image that you want replicated exactly, I can not promise I will be able to do so, simply because some images do not translate well into tattoos without some serious modification. This is taken on a case by case basis and I'm more than happy to offer advice on any designs you have.

Should I tip my tattoo artist?

This is totally up to you! We love getting tips and most clients like to show their appreciation for a job well done with a little something extra but don't feel obligated. I understand that the space in your pocket book may be only just big enough to match the passion you have for getting tattooed and no room for extras. That's OK!

With that said there are many ways to tip that don't involve money (*cough*cookies*cough*)

Will tanning beds affect the quality of my tattoo?

Yes. You are in control of your own body and I would never tell you how to live your life but tanning beds are TERRIBLE for tattoos.  Natural sunlight is also potentially damaging but the risks can be greatly decreased by using a high SPF sunblock whenever you will be out in the sun.

If you have any other questions please don't hesitate to get in touch!

Have a great day.