Update: Unfortunately, photos for this post were removed because I wasn't certain about the copyrights. Better safe than sorry, and I wouldn't want to infringe on anyone's rights.
When I first opened my art gallery, I had no idea my next door neighbors would be tattoo artists. They rented the space a month after I opened.
New Hope is the kind of tourist town where everyone and everything is welcome. In any given restaurant or shop or gallery, you can run into people like Mick Jagger or Sister Sledge at any time of the year. Streisand makes a trip each spring to shop the galleries for her home on the west coast. A few of my clients were soap stars from New York (Eileen Fulton), and singers like Kay Ballard.
So I was more than interested when the tattoo artists opened up next to my gallery. And they were artists in every respect of the word. They didn't use stencils. It was all free hand and I used to gape at how talented they were.
I remained in that space for almost four years, until I decided to move to a location in town where there was more visibility (they are still in the same location). But one of the things I learned from the artists in the tattoo studio was that if you're thinking about getting a tattoo, make sure you research the artist and you know what you want. The procedure to remove a tattoo is far more intense than it is to get one. You want something beautiful, like this one below:
Or this one, which is absolutely beautiful in every single aspect:
The reason I'm posting about this is because my nephew was talking about getting a small tattoo the other day and I gave him the same advice the tattoo artists gave me. Then I gave him the names of a few artists I thought were excellent. And I tried to impress upon him that the tattoo he gets will most likely be a tattoo he lives with for the rest of his life. So he'd better be certain he likes the end result. Otherwise he might wind up with something like THIS pitiful mess, below.
And, as time marches on and things begin to droop, this mess will only get worse.