Entry requirements to become a tattoo artist There are no set entry requirements for becoming a tattoo artist but there are routes you can take that will make it easier to make it as a successful tattoo artist. Many tattooists start off through an apprenticeship. If you’re interested in this path, you should start by approaching local tattoo artists to see if they would consider taking you on as a trainee. Tattoo studios will expect you to prove that you have a real interest in tattooing, as well as the necessary artistic and technical ability. As tattooing has become incredibly popular over the past few years, more apprenticeships have become available. However, competition for these apprenticeships has also increased significantly. During your apprenticeship, you’ll be given all the necessary training you need to become a tattoo artist. This usually starts with spending the first few months clearning and sterilising the equipment. You’ll also learn about design, human biology, preventing infections, and how tattooing physically works. Be prepared to wait some time before you’re allowed anywhere near the needles! Apprenticeships usually last around three years, depending on your skill levels and, of course, how quickly you learn. Once you’ve finished gained the necessary skills and experience, you can then think about starting up on your own. “I didn’t realise how much hard work my apprenticeship to become a tattoo artist would be! For the first 12 months or so, I spent a lot of time cleaning, watching the other tattooists, and learning how the studio worked. During this time, I was paid around £100 per week, which was pretty high given that many apprenticeships are unpaid.
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