Unsolicited Advice – What Should I Get Tattooed?
I regularly receive emails both directly to me and through a website that essentially ask the same question:
What Should I Get Tattooed?
Here are a couple of excerpts:
i want a tattoo but i dont know what i like what are some creative ideas?
i dont want what everyone else has.. and i dont really have anything i have liked my whole life so its hard to figure something out… i dont really want a butterfly or flower or the typical stuff
i know that i want a quote but cant find any decent ones or ones i can relate too
Ide like to get a tatoo of a really amazing life saying, when someone reads it or when I see it every day it reminds me why I should live life and enjoy everything.
I’m getting my first tattoo, and i am just wondering what’s a good starter tattoo location, and object.
Ladies, What would be a good looking tattoo?
What are some ideas for a meaningful tattoo? Im a 19 yr old guy that is looking to get a tattoo. nothing popular, and i want it to be something that is meaningful. Something that causes thought, even deep thought. Im pretty picky when it comes to stuff like this and am going to get the tattoo on the inside of my right bicep. Right now i am leaning towards something composed of just one word, or a small phrase. Any ideas?
I want to get a memorial tattoo for my friend who died. What would be a good one to get?
As a business owner I try to respond as tactfully as I possibly can to these inquiries. It is of course my “business” to sell tattoos. But more importantly than taking someone’s money and giving them what they think that they want is the responsibility of it. As a business owner it is also my responsibility to try to ensure that my clients are happy with the product that they receive and unfortunately to some degree this involves trying to help think for them. If you don’t know what it is that you would like tattooed on you – then there is a very good chance that you are not ready to get one.
Sometimes tattoos aren’t about the image – they are about immortalizing a moment or a transition. Symbolizing something that is happening or has recently happened to change the person’s life. I understand that. If the client can’t articulate that (or even know it themselves) than there is no way that I think a tattooist should be given the choice to try and pick someone’s tattoo out for them. Especially via email or forum post. In person, there can be a back and forth dialogue and sometimes we can help coax out an idea which was there all along… but (there’s always a but) if you really have no idea what it is that you would like tattooed on you…. don’t get one. Wait. Please do not count on your friends or some stranger online to decide for you what you should have permanently placed on your body. Would you come on the internet to ask what you should wear today or where you should go to eat without more background? How can I make that decision for you?
I don’t want to hurt your feelings. I do want you to think for yourself. If you get a tattoo, I want it to be something that you can be comfortable with for a lifetime. So if the choice is mine, I will hurt your feelings rather than try and take your money and make a decision for you. That’s a decision that I can live with.