Getting a tattoo is a mixture of excitement and trepidation, especially if it’s your first one. After all, it’s not like a haircut where you can always change it if you decide you don’t like it, or a new set of clothes that you can leave to gather dust in the wardrobe once you grow tired of them; it is a permanent commitment. While you can technically get it removed, the process is painful, expensive and time-consuming, so it’s better to take your time and do your research before getting inked. There are several factors to consider, such as placement, size, colour, style and meaning. While this is a very personal decision, there are some useful tips to help you make a choice that you will be happy with.
Placement and size
In real estate, they say it is all about location, location, location, and similar rule applies for tattoos as well. Do you want it to be hidden and private, in plain sight for everyone to see or something in between? Think about what kind of clothes you normally wear, both privately and professionally, and how often they would allow your tattoo to be seen. If you work in an office with a strict dress code, you might want to avoid having a neck or hand tattoo. Keep in mind that some parts of your body are extremely painful to tattoo, so avoid those hotspots if you don’t want the process to be too painful. Closely related to placement is the question of size, since bigger tattoos need a bigger canvas, like your back or chest, while smaller tattoos will look better on your lower arm or wrist.
Style and colour
There are many different tattoo styles, so you should take your time selecting the perfect one for you. Talk to your tattoo artist (if you don’t have one, shop around until you find one who best understands you) and go through some ideas with them. They are talented artists and can easily draw or copy anything you come up with. If you’re leaning towards tattooing a word or phrase, make sure to properly research and understand its meaning. Some people like to get something in foreign characters like Japanese kanji, and if you find that appealing, make sure to visit the experts for Japanese tattoos in Sydney.
A common mistake people make is trying to copy a tattoo from their favourite celebrity or something they saw online, but keep in mind that just because something looks good on another person doesn’t mean that it will look good on you. If you want to base your design on someone else’s ink, that’s perfectly fine, but make sure to add some personal touches to make it your own. When you decide on a design, it’s time to pick the colour. There are no set rules, but it’s generally best to pick a colour palette that best compliments your complexion and the chosen design. Your tattoo artist will be able to tell you which designs look better in plain black/grey and which ones only show their true potential in full colour.
What does it all mean?
Perhaps the most important thing to keep in mind is that a tattoo should mean something to you in addition to being a piece of art on your skin. What makes a tattoo truly stand out is the story behind it. It can be as subtle as an important date or the initials of a loved one, or a design that symbolizes your personality, or perhaps even a piece of art you drew yourself that you wanted to immortalize on your skin. The point is, it’s the meaning behind the tattoo that truly breathes life into it.
Everyone will tell you to always sleep on any big decision and this is no different. When you’ve chosen how the tattoo will look, take a day and really think about it and if you still find the design appealing, then you know you’ve selected something you will always be proud of. If you are having second thoughts, you can preview the design by getting a temporary henna tattoo. That way you can see exactly how it will look in different outfits and circumstances and you can decide if you want to make it permanent or go back to the drawing board. Finally, sometimes people decide that they are not ready for a tattoo just yet, and that’s perfectly fine too. It’s better to wait for the perfect time (if ever) than to rush it and end up with something you will regret.