Lets do a quick Q&A of some of the most commonly asked questions so we can skip that step and jump right into talking about your tattoo.
Q: “What are your prices like?”
A: First, I charge a $35 non refundable deposit. I charge around $50-60 an hour, 40$ minimum. This includes the drawing process. Once the form is filled out I will be able to give you a very rough estimate of your overall price. I say rough because everyone’s skin is so different. Some people require a little more poking than others because their skin is thicker. I don’t like giving estimates because I don’t want you to be unprepared if it takes a little longer than what I told you. If there are financial constraints, I will do the tattoo in multiple sessions as long as the first layer gets down (multi sessions are only doable if the first layer can be completed).
Q: “Do handpoked tattoos last as long as machine tattoos?”
A: Unfortunately when people think handpoked tattoos or stick and pokes they visualize a sewing needle, a drunk friend, and some faded-pokey outline “somewhere on the foot orrrrrr…” right? In a professional setting, a handpoked tattoo will hold up just as well as a machine tattoo. I use the exact equipment a machine artist uses (tattoo needles, tattoo ink, etc) and I puncture the same layers of skin as a machine. The only difference is that I physically puncture the skin myself. The old saying, “bold to hold,” in reference to tattoos definitely rings true because with sun exposure and age a tattoo will fade—tattoos fade with time, regardless of how they are put in the skin. Bolder lines will show less fading because of their density (more ink in the skin, less likely to notice some fading).
Q: Do I do touch ups?
A: Yes, on my own work! But I charge for touch ups. There is still a deposit required and hourly rates still apply. (They just don’t take as long as a new tattoo appointment).
Q: “Do handpoked tattoos hurt more than machine tattoos?”
A: I would say about 90% of my clients say it hurts less, and I agree. Pressured pricks is probably the best way I can describe the pain. I find machine tattoos tend to feel a little more like a burn or a consistent cut. The only downside is that handpoked tattoos take longer. Most of the time, multiple layers are necessary. Some people are used to the irritation by then and describe it as “numb,” while others say it feels “raw,” and additional layers become a little more irritating. I’ve had a few people fall asleep on my table, and many call the experience “surprisingly calming.” The most common reaction I get to the first few pokes is “Seriously? That’s it?!” Handpoked tattoos are great for first timers. Overall, it’s definitely a subjective experience. Come in and try it out!
Q: “Will you add to/fix someone else’s work?”
A: Generally… no! Sometimes I might be up for this request, depending on what it is. But it depends on if I feel our styles will mesh well together.
Q: “Do you / will you use coloured ink?”
A: At one point I was considering it. For now, I will stick with black ink. I will keep you guys posted on social media if I do decide to give coloured ink a go.
Q: “Do you do consultations? How does this work?”
A: Basically, the google form is a virtual consultation. I should be able to get a general idea of what you’re looking for from that form and then also be able to give you a *very rough* price estimate. If you have a photo that inspired you, feel free to attach that in an email as well so I can see what you see. Other than that I will either schedule some time for drawing during your appointment and draw up your tattoo while you’re with me, or I’ll have something drawn up and sent to you before your appointment.
Q: “Would you ever use a machine? Why handpoke?”
A: Honestly… no! I feel much more comfortable handpoking. It feels very natural to me and I am completely lost when it comes to feeling out a machine. (Props to those who do it!!!) Also, for me handpoking is not just about the tattoo, it’s about the comfort and experience. It can be quite calming and has therapeutic aspects, not just for my friends and clients, but for me as well. I also enjoy the primitive aspect…Tattooing started out as handpoked, which is pretty cool right? I absolutely love what I do.
So now that that’s all taken care of.. are you ready to book? 🙂