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Looking to get a tattoo by a licenced artist? Basics for the beginner

Updated on August 29, 2013

One of my tattoos

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Entering into the world of tattoos

Tattoos are a common art today though I wouldn't enter into it lightly. Just because something is a fad or popular, I wouldn't reccommend it, for you may really regret it later especially when you're a lot older and your interests and priorites are much different.

But! If you like the idea of a tattoo~ just because...or you know you like the idea for yourself and not because "everyone's doing it" then this article is for you =)

What are the ways to go about getting a tattoo? This may seem obvious, but there are a few things you should defintely keep in mind:

  1. Find a reputable place (you can look online too) where they use sterile needs and have a license
  2. Take your time when deciding on the tattoo and the design; there are tattoo artists you can look up online and see their work and locate the one you like near you
  3. I would take it slow on your first one, don't get a huge one covering a large area at first; I'd start out with a smaller one so you won't have a "huge" regret...
  4. For me, it hurt a lot, but it was worth it
  5. This is permanent- so think of something you know you won't regret like a butterfly or a flower for a woman; the idea is something not political or religious because sometimes those opinions or beliefs change, and tattoos are hard and very expensive to remove so 'If it's gonna be with you for life, be sure you like it'.

A little bit more about my experience

I got my 1st tattoo, a rose, (see picture above), about 6 years 2004, at a place in Provincetown, MA while on vacation in Cape Cod and a few friends and me went.

One of the friends got her girlfriend's name tattooed on her back.....she said it didn't hurt at all, that it was in a fleshy area. I looked the tattoos over, I noticed right away this was a good artist, I chose the rose. It originally had a Phantom of the Opera mask next to it--the whole tattoo was $75 which is a good deal really for a quality tattoo of small-medium size. But I opted out the mask, even though I loved and still love Phantom of the Opera, I wanted to be sure , absolutely sure I wouldn't grow to dislike or get sick of the mask.

I've been very happy with my rose, it is my name after all, and Rose is my favorite flower,etc.


I guess since this was the first one, I was a bit nervous about the pain or how it would feel. (That's why it's good to bring friends along!) Well, the guy told me not to move my leg and keep it still. They always do the black outline first and then color it in. It felt to me like razor blades in my flesh, sorry that's the best way I can describe it! It hurt but it wasn't too overwhelming. It only took about 20 minutes. (I had one done a couple years later of a butterfly (small) on my back--so the pain really wasn't an issue--to me it's part of the experience and kinda "cool"!)


They put a small bandage and reccommend you don't swim or wet it for a few days to allow the ink to set or stay and not smudge. You can put sunblock on it after to keep it bright and not fade in the sun (if you're in the sun alot). Mine hasn't faded but I'm not in the sun alot.


I think it's primarily a personality thing. I don't want to get too many, I think it's sexy to have a few in different places...Out of my 9 siblings and I, only 2 of us have tattoos, and us two are both Capricorns!! LOL

I think tattoos are cool, that is, well thought out, meaningful, and beautiful looking tattoos. If I had a spectacular idea for one, I would get another. My only thought at this time is to maybe add to the small butterfly by adding a couple more next to it and a small tiny "baby" butterfly. I've thought of getting a different flower but I don't know where to put it.


for me, on in general, please share them in the comment box below!! You may just have a really cool idea I would want to use sometime! Thanks for reading :-)

The Illustrated Man~a very interesting movie~mind bending, dark, sci-fi ;-)


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    • schoolgirlforreal profile image

      schoolgirlforreal 7 years ago

      Hi Mickey Dee,!

      Thanks for dropping in, I'm so glad you like tatoos!! I have two, other than the rose, one of a small butterfly on my shoulder. One day last week I woke up and was like "what is that on my leg?!!" I just hope I always like them, and I'm not in a huge hurry to get more...I def don't want to be covered in them, I'd feel like the Illustrated Man!! LOLOL

      Good point...blending God and bikes and other themes..something to def think about...if I get another, I want it to be cool, sexy, clever, and maybe even drawn or designed by me, but def nice !

    • Micky Dee profile image

      Micky Dee 7 years ago

      Hey school girl! The tats with color are so beautiful on the ladies. I see more and more that are very tasteful and beautiful.

      I have tats on all four limbs. I got them all after turning 60. Make sure of what you want. Visit several shops to check out the professionalism. Experience is the necessity.

      There are so many tattoo websites that will help. There are "bicycle tattoo" sites. There are some tats that blend God and spirituality with bikes or other themes. God bless.

    • schoolgirlforreal profile image

      schoolgirlforreal 7 years ago

      @Rachel Marie,

      OMG! That is so funny! I love George Carlin to death, atheist and all. OH, sooo funny. I hope you and tom find something meaningful and special, but make sure you really want one! Sometimes I imagine I don't want the ones I have but very rarely ;-) xxoo

    • profile image

      Rachel Marie 7 years ago

      I am thinking of getting a tattoo, and I know that Tom really wants one. I remember George Carlin discussing some funny tattoo ideas: getting a necklace of "hickeys" tattooed around his neck, and getting dotted lines tattooed at all his joints with the words "Fold Here" LOL

    • schoolgirlforreal profile image

      schoolgirlforreal 7 years ago



      Being alone with no land on the horizon for many days would be a test for me, an awesome interesting adventure, but could also be very frightening! I've thought of that, and no land --oh! scary!!! I think it's good you did it though :)

      That's ok! I really like this pic, it's picturesque. I've often wished I was born back in time, oddly maybe, those were simpler times I imagine, and that sort of appeals to me for some reason.

    • cheaptrick profile image

      cheaptrick 7 years ago from the bridge of sighs

      Hi S G.I'm back to explain the pic.I love sailing,always have.The first time I sailed alone to San Padre Island was what that pic reminds me of...I met myself through the solitude and challenges that single handing is made of.Imagine being alone with no land on the horizon for many days.The only company you have is you.All of the ego illusions fall away and you either reconcile your self or...well...I did.Sorry if you were misled by the pic


    • schoolgirlforreal profile image

      schoolgirlforreal 7 years ago



      I loved your profile....funny:)

      Also, I rarely drink , but after hearing about those Heinekens, I had to get me some today,Cheers! to a happy, day :)

    • schoolgirlforreal profile image

      schoolgirlforreal 7 years ago


      A pirate ship eh? :) I kinda go for tatoos on the arm...I think lol

      Hey Dean, you're a little deceitful w/ that avatar! What a handsome pic! Someone might think you're still 35!!!

      Have a good one, thanks for visiting~SGFR :-)

    • cheaptrick profile image

      cheaptrick 7 years ago from the bridge of sighs

      Hi'a SG.I found out my daughter was a tattoo addict when she posted on Face Book!Imagine that!I personally like looking at tattoos on women as they enhance certain wonderfully curvy areas[wink wink].I thought about a Pirate Ship tattoo on my chest when I was young but didn't do it...and I'm glad I didn't cause at my age the damn thing would be a sunken galleon with a limp mast if ya know what I mean:)))

      I Gotta quit drink-in these Heinekens!Grins Girl...great hub


    • schoolgirlforreal profile image

      schoolgirlforreal 7 years ago


      I agree, too many tattoos are overwhelming and diminish someone's beauty. I have 2 small ones, so I feel good about that. I don't know why I like the pain, maybe it makes me feel like a big person that I can take it !LOl

      thanks :)

    • Mike Lickteig profile image

      Mike Lickteig 7 years ago from Lawrence KS USA

      Tattoos aren't for me, but I like them on other people if they are not overwhelming. I saw a lady that I thought was very attractive, but her beauty was diminished by tattoos on both arms, both legs, and all down her back. That being said, I am not against them categorically. I think a tattoo can look very nice on people.

      I would be afraid of the pain, though........

      Voted up and useful.


    • schoolgirlforreal profile image

      schoolgirlforreal 7 years ago

      @Dave Mathews

      Persoanlly, Dave, I've heard that before from my boyfriend but he got used to my 'little rose' :-)

      Honestly I like a small tattoo on me anyway...I would never imagine get covered or too many... I enjoyed the pain though, it was part of the process!

      You're entitle to your opinion. :) REad my poem on Lips Sewn Shut in Your Silence ...and you'll meet a girl who I know who is into that and has a cat who attacks :(

    • schoolgirlforreal profile image

      schoolgirlforreal 7 years ago


      Thanks! That's cute " your little rose" :-) I'm the youngest in my family and my name is I'm little rose ;) Thanks

    • Dave Mathews profile image

      Dave Mathews 7 years ago from NORTH YORK,ONTARIO,CANADA

      Some see tatoos as a form of art. I see it as self-mutilation and physical abuse. My opinion!

    • leeberttea profile image

      leeberttea 7 years ago

      Cool hub! I like your little rose.

    • schoolgirlforreal profile image

      schoolgirlforreal 7 years ago

      Hey K9 :)

      Tattoos are cool, I agree ! I think it's cool yours were custome designed...I like the idea of say me drawing a picture or having one drawn, and them doing the tattoo of it--now that's original! One thing I learned from a friend was she had her tattoo redone and sort of done over the orginal which was worn and not as great. I like that idea too ! I didn't want to comment before, but I'm sorry you had someone special who passed away. I read of it in your last hub. I hope you have healed somewhat...I do like that idea as well of a memorial tattoo for someone very special. I'd think of it for my Mom or significant other.

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing your tattoo story!! :)



    • K9keystrokes profile image

      India Arnold 7 years ago from Northern, California

      Sg I sport 5 tattoos. They tell the stroy of my life and began in 1980 up until the latest in 2008. I think tats are beautiful and interesting when done tastefully and by a good artist. Each of mine have been custome designed and only 1 is on any other person other than me, and that is because it is a memorial tattoo for someone very special who passed away. Nice hub. Your tat image is very cool hub-buddy!