Body Mod Info- Part 1: Tattoos

Body Mod Info- Part 1: Tattoos

Shyan Dunlap, Author

High school is a place for refining yourself — just ask the yearbook staff. People redefine themselves in many ways, and one of those ways is body modification. There are three different types of body mods, Permanent (tattoos), Semi-Permanent (piercings, implants), and Temporary (hair dye).  As a body modification enthusiast who hopes to work in the industry I feel it is important to know about the rights and wrongs of this industry. Tattoos are said to be the most painful of them all so where better to start.

Although I am not the most well versed in the tattooing part of body modification I do know a lot about shop procedure.  I’m probably in a tattoo shop at least once a month, usually for piercing related reasons. The number one thing when considering a tattoo is to find a respectable artist.

A respectable artist keeps a clean shop and doesn’t work from home. I cannot stress enough — go to a studio not a house. You wouldn’t want open heart surgery in an old dusty warehouse; neither would you want a tattoo in a your friend’s garage. It just isn’t sanitary. Which brings me around to the importance of a sterile environment and equipment. Make sure your chosen shop has an autoclave. Autoclaves sterilize and clean the equipment used for the tattoo. Its important for the tattoo needles and gun to be sterile so that your new modification does not get infected.

When getting a tattoo its also important to look at their previous work. Different artists specialize in different styles of tattooing. Looking at their other work will tell you how good of an artist they are also. Most shops will have their artwork on display either in little books in a waiting area or up on the walls.

Other important things about getting a tattoo is preparing to pay big bucks and to get comfortable. As you hopefully know, tattoos are pretty expensive. My small tattoo on my wrist cost $50 which is on the really cheap end of a good tattoo shop’s price range. Another thing that most people don’t understand about getting a tattoo is that it takes a while, depending on what you get. If you want a portrait of your mother or something don’t expect to sit down for 5 minutes and have it come out as a spitting image. Tattoos take time; the more complex the tattoo the longer time in the chair.

My recommendation and favorite shop is King Ink Tattoo and Piercing in Terre Haute, Indiana. They are located at 1513 Wabash Avenue. The owner and artist at the shop is Roger King; he does amazing work and this is coming from experience. In order to get a tattoo in Indiana at Roger´s shop you must be 16 with parental consent and 18 without consent.