The idea of a picking a tattoo shop out when you are in need of a tattoo can be a difficult one. Some of us know exactly where to look and what we’re looking for, others tend to just go wherever and get their tattoo done as long as the place is clean and reputable and others still just go anywhere – literally anywhere. Basically the people who know exactly what they are looking for go exactly where they need to be and as far as they’re concerned, this blog post isn’t really directed at them.
Finding the right place to get tattooed can be a challenge, especially in a place like New York City. The truth is, New York City has a ridiculous amount of insanely talented tattooists. You just need to find them. So I guess that’s your first lesson: do your research. This blog post at Racked gives a brief but somewhat useful rundown of the most important things to consider before setting out to get a tattoo. I do think however, that the Racked post makes a classic mistake right off the start, within the first three lines:
‘There are certain things in New York City that are harder to navigate than others, like the West Village, the G train, and finding a really good tattoo shop that won’t charge you an arm and leg for something stupid on your arm or your leg.’
Did you catch it? The idea that tattoo hunters need to find a tattooist who won’t charge “an arm and leg” is one of the true problems with people getting tattoos. A tattoo is not something that you try to get the cheapest price on before committing to. A tattoo is not like a t-shirt or a pair of shoes or a car. Nowhere does the adage You Get What You Pay For ring more true than with tattoo. My advice – if you actually want it – is hell yes, spend an arm and a leg for your tattoo if the artist is worth it. I mean, don’t wander into some scabby back alley shop and pay $500 for some crummy flash that the dude has had hanging on his wall since the 70’s, but if you go and check out an artist’s work and they do sweet work and they happen to charge a bit more than the other guys…go for it. Seriously, when it comes to tattoos, don’t cheap out and that’s pretty much my number one piece of advice for anyone out there contemplating getting some work done.