Thank you for being interested in my work! Please read through this before contacting me about getting ink. Getting most of your answers here will save me time that I can dedicate to making you the perfect piece! Below you can find answers to frequently asked questions as well as thorough aftercare. Xoxo -Amy
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Tattoos Safe?
Yes, as long as you go to a reputable artist that has been trained in the art of tattooing by an industry professional. I keep my annual bloodborne pathogen training up-to-date, and only use disposable, one-time-use needles and tubes. The inks I use are made by the most reputable ink brands in the industry (Eternal, Intenze, Dynamic, and Fusion), and I practice completely sterile methods that are up to date with the San Francisco County Health Department, Alameda County Health Department and City of Berkeley Health Department.
How does the tattoo process work and does getting a tattoo hurt?
The application process of tattooing requires a needle that goes under the epidermis (outer layer of skin) and delivers ink into the dermis (middle layer of skin), which contains nerves and blood vessels. It does hurt, especially in areas of your body that are sensitive, such has the stomach, ribs, feet, armpits, head, neck, hands, etc. Tattoo inks consist of pigments made from various minerals and a carrier. Tattoo inks are most similar to watercolor paint as far as consistency goes. This also includes its ability to mix with its background. Whatever pigment your skin is, the ink color will be on top of that, meaning that pale skin will generally show any color, while reds, blues, yellows and greens show up well on darker skin tones.
How much is it going to cost?
This will 100% depend on the size, the detail, and the placement of your tattoo. Looking for cheap tattoos is never a good idea, as you'll probably have to spend a lot more later to cover it up because it was done in a cheap fashion. I may be able to give you a ballpark answer based on your ideas, but please be overly-prepared rather than not prepared financially.
What is your pricing?
I currently charge $150 per hour, and for larger pieces, you have the option of renting me out all day for $800 for up to eight hours (saving $400 from the normal hourly rate of eight hours.) My minimum for small pieces is $100. I require a deposit of $50-$100, depending on the piece, for saving any appointment time. I have several flash sales throughout the year which offer specific deals.
Where are you located?
I currently tattoo at Jesse James Tattoo at 1816 Euclid Ave, Berkeley, CA by appointment.
Is it possible to cover an old tattoo?
It is , but we will have to go darker and bigger. Traditionally, black was the main color used in coverups, however, certain coverups will be able to hold reds, blues, and greens, as well as certain browns, purples, and oranges. The lighter your old tattoo is, the easier it will be able to cover.
What tattoo should I get and where?
If you have to ask either of these you shouldn't get a tattoo! I only want to tattoo things on you that you will for sure want for the rest of your life, and impulse decisions generally leave people feeling regretful. Tattoos on certain body placements such as hands, necks, faces, and other visible areas are still discriminated against in a lot of work places, so making sure you can commit is the most important thing. Researching what you want is also super important, and showing me that you've done your research with reference photos allows me to see that you are really ready and not doing it on a whim. I will not freely draw for your tattoo just so you can see what you like, unless you specifically ask me to do anything I want on your body because you're looking at if from an art collecting standpoint.
How should I prepare for my tattoo session?
Please be well rested, hydrated, and have eaten a good amount recently before going under the needle. I enjoy talking and getting to know my clients, however if you feel that talking will be too difficult for you while in pain, feel free to bring headphones, a book, your phone, etc. I also recommend that you bring a water bottle and snacks that you can nibble on to keep your blood sugar up, because blood pressure and blood sugar tend to drop dramatically during a tattoo. Please shower beforehand, and feel free to bring 1-2 close friends. Do not be under the influence of any drugs or medications, especially anything that thins your blood like alcohol or certain pain medications.
Can we do this exact super tiny Pinterest tattoo?
First of all, please know that bold will hold. Just because you see a cute picture on the internet of a tiny and delicate fresh tattoo, that does not mean it healed well. It most likely didn't. Skin expands and contracts over time, and super tiny things will probably either look blobby or faded over time. I want to make sure people take into account that this tattoo will be on your body forever, so creating something that will still look good in 10 years is important to me. Many of today's tattoo trends do not make for a long lasting tattoo. This includes finger tattoos. We are constantly using and moving our hands so it really is not the best surface for your tattoo to heal well.
What is your cancellation policy?
The easiest thing for me is for you to wait until you are 1000% ready for the tattoo before booking an appointment. Wishy-washy ideas will waste both of our time. I require at least 48 hours notice for a cancellation. If you leave a deposit and you cancel within the 48 hours before your tattoo appointment, you will lose your deposit. For artists, time is money, and it often doesn't work out to try to book someone last minute to replace your time slot. The only two exceptions to this rule are 1) if you wake up with the flu or another serious illness that will prevent your tattoo from healing well, or 2) if there has been a death of someone close to you, or another very serious family emergency. Otherwise, please do not book unless you are serious and timely. If you are 30 minutes late you forfeit your deposit.
Do I tip the tattoo artist?
Tipping is always greatly appreciated. We fall into the same service category as servers, barbers, hairstylists, nail technicians, etc.
What is your touch-up policy?
You will get one free touch up within the first four months of getting your tattoo, as long as aftercare instructions were followed. Touch ups are to make the tattoo look absolutely perfect after the healing process. You are expected to take care of your tattoo, so if it looks faded due to sun exposure, you will be required to pay for the touch up.
Can you draw up a design so that I can have a different tattoo artist put it on me?
If I am under 18, will you tattoo me with a parent's consent?
Unfortunately, no. California's Body Art and Safety code states that no one under the age of 18 may get a tattoo legally, no matter parental consent.