If you want to become a tattoo artist you have a long road ahead of you. Doing it the right way not only takes time and commitment it can also be quite frustrating. Tattooing is an over saturated industry and there are too many artists for too few clients, that being said most artists rarely take apprentices because there are far too many applicants. To become a tattoo artist you have to have a few simple qualities or you will never finish your apprenticeship.
Probably the most important thing to have if you want to become a tattoo artist is some form of artistic skill. You will be drawing 8-12 hours a day so why would you want a job that requires that much drawing unless you enjoy drawing or are simply good at it. If the thought of doing nothing but drawing for the next 30 years of your life and getting paid for it sounds good then you have a place to start with becoming a tattoo artist. Even if you can't draw you can still become a tattoo artist but you are more likely to become a tattooist and earn a lower pay grade than someone who is an artist.
To become a tattoo artist you also have to have stamina. Large tattoos can take 5-6 hours a session and if you can't sit and concentrate for that long you will either get bored or you will not be able to produce the quality your clients expect. Apprenticeships are long and you have to be in it for the long run, usually at least 70-80 percent of those who get apprenticeships drop out because they haven't got the stamina to see it through and take the time learning.
If you get an apprenticeship your mentor will expect you to be able to sit for long periods of time and just watch. There is a certain amount of patience involved if you want to become a tattoo artist as this process literally takes years to achieve. Having patience will also help your skills to properly develop, tattooing takes practice and some basic skills like drawing a straight line and tattooing a circle take time to master properly. You won't become a tattoo artist, or at the very least a decent one unless you have patience with yourself and your skills.
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Another skill you will need to master to become a tattoo artist is the ability to manage your money. Unlike a salaried job you only get paid when you tattoo and an apprenticeship is like going through college; you will need a full time job to support yourself while you are learning as it may be months or years until you start getting paid. Once you start getting paid your money will still fluctuate week to week and you will have to take many things into account such as time of year and pay weeks. Managing your money is also important to become a tattoo artist because you have to understand business matters well since you will be an independent contractor.
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