Tattoos can become quite an addiction; in fact, about 32% of those in the United States who participated in a survey have claimed that they can’t get enough. It takes a skilled person in order to ink someone, as this act of permanence must be perfect. If you want to get into the field of tattooing, you’ll probably start out with a tattoo apprenticeship. If you’ve wondered about becoming a tattoo apprentice and what steps are required, it’s simpler than you probably thought.
Unlike a lot of jobs fields today, you don’t necessarily need a degree in order to tattoo others. However, the more studying and training that you’ve received, the better prepared you will be for the rigors of the job. You also should have at least graduated high school and obtained a GED. Most tattoo artists attend a tattoo trade school or tattoo college.
According to the Alliance of Professional Tattooists, or APT, you may need at least three years of apprenticeship before you can put ink to anybody’s skin. In order to find such a program, start by putting together a portfolio of your best artwork and tattoo designs. Make sure that these show your breadth of skill. Then send out this portfolio to tattoo shops and organizations that are accepting apprentices.
Once you’re accepted for an apprenticeship, you will learn the ins and outs of working at a tattoo studio. You’ll likely be paired up with a masterful tattoo artist and work alongside this person. You’ll discover how to help a customer select the ideal tattoo for them, how to create a tattoo that meets the customer’s specifications, how to clean any tattooing equipment before and after use, and of course how to use that equipment.
You may have to prepare to spend money on becoming a tattoo apprentice. APT notes that you can find apprenticeships at no cost, but don’t count on it. Once you graduate from your apprenticeship, you may have to further your education and take more classes. This varies from state to state, depending on its tattooing regulations. Likewise, you’ll probably need to obtain a license in order to tattoo others, but this also varies by state. If you do need a license, you’ll need to ink a certain number of tattoos and train for a certain number of hours. You may also have to pass a test.
Once you’ve achieved all of the steps toward becoming a tattoo apprentice, you can now begin seeking out employment at a tattoo shop as a tattoo artist and designer. This fulfilling career will also allow you to share your own skills and knowledge with other apprentices in turn who want to learn how to tattoo.