Inkoming - 143

Published: 03 March, 2007 - Featured in Skin Deep 143, March, 2007

Air your views or have a rant and we’ll give one letter a free, yes free, t-shirt! Aren’t we nice?

Winning Letter

Dear Skin Deep, 

I am a currently un-tattooed 17 year-old reader of your magazine. I enjoy your articles and I’m inspired by the photos of the work in your galleries. I was particularly thankful for your pull-out guide on getting your first tattoo, which was featured a couple of issues back and I am writing to you in regards to one of the issues raised in the guide. The guide suggested that you pick your artist carefully in regards as to what type of work you want done, but I am unfortunately not too certain as to how to find the best artist for the job. So I was wondering if any readers who would happen to know any artists working in Ireland preferably in Dublin who are good in any of the following fields and contact me via my e-mail address as to what studio they work in and its address. The styles are: American Traditional,  Realistic Black and White and Oriental.  My e-mail address is I would be very thankful for any information given to me from the magazine or its readers.  

Thanking you in advance, 

Cillian Power

Hi Cillian

Thanks for your comments about the supplement, I’m glad you found it of use. There are quite a few good tattoo studios in Dublin and I’m sure the readers of Skin Deep will be able to help you out with some suggestions. Remember, wherever you decide to go, make sure you get to see examples of the artists’ work and if you can try and see some of their tattoos firsthand. Do lots of research and you should end up with a great tattoo that you will enjoy forever.

Good luck with your quest and send me some photos when you have had the work done.




I’m a 16 year-old girl and I really want a tattoo. I have wanted one for ages now and my mum and dad have finally said yes!  Do you know anywhere that may do them with parents consent? Could you please reply thank you.

Danielle via

Hi Danielle

Thanks for your letter,

I don’t know whom you have been talking to but it is totally ILLEGAL for anyone in the UK to get a tattoo under the age of eighteen. Even with your parents consent, this is still illegal and you could, if you can find a registered tattooist who will do this for you, get them into a great deal of trouble as it is an offence under the tattooing of a minors act. 

This will not only give the tattooist a possible criminal record but they will also be put onto the sex offenders register and get you into a lot of bother with the police too. Any tattooist worth his or her salt will NOT knowingly tattoo anyone under the age of eighteen and anyone who looks younger will be asked to prove their age.

There has been this myth that you can get tattooed from the age of sixteen with your parents consent, but it is just that – a myth.

Do yourself a favour and wait until you come of age. Not only will it be worth the wait but also it will give you some time to really research your design and your chosen artist. Trust me, it is well worth the wait.



Dear Skin Deep

Thanks very much Neil and all at Skin Deep for publishing my letter in Skin Deep last month and putting me back in touch with Leslie Chan from Shangri La Tattoo, my back piece is now on the way to being finished. I hope to post you some pics as soon as it’s finished  




Hi Skin Deep

I recently went on a mission to find some sort of tattoo convention in my area of Newcastle, but I couldn’t find one. Could you nice people with all your knowledge of the convention circuit point me to one in the North East please? If there isn’t one, would you also be so kind as to tell me how I would go about setting one up. Any information would be much appreciated. 

Thank you.

John via 


Hi John,

There will be a two-day tattoo convention in the Students Union bar in, Northumbria Students Union on Sandyford Road, Newcastle Uni. On Sun 26th and bank holiday Mon 27th in August. The convention is being hosted by Carl Cooke from Artful ink.  Go to for more info. Also in your area in the Peterlee Tattoo arts festival on Sunday 25th March.

As for putting on a tattoo convention, there is so much that goes into doing this and it takes lots of time, hard, work and money. I’m sure Carl would be grateful for any help offered. Hope this helps, Neil


Hi Skin Deep

I am writing to tell people how difficult it is to get an apprenticeship as a tattoo artist these days. I have decided on a career move now and have been doing tons of research, building my portfolio up and saving money up to pay an artist to teach me, and that’s the thing I don’t get. There are no courses in my local college even for tattoo style drawing, I’d have to do an ordinary art class which is just teaching you to draw on paper, not the style of drawing for a tattoo artist, and there are not enough private colleges to train apprentices around. I understand other artists don’t want the fresh competition, but I believe that if you are as passionate about a difficult, competitive career as I am, then artists could try and cut us a little slack because we have made this decision. 

O.K. some don’t go through with it, but many others will. But there is no support for us at all and that is where I think maybe the local councils could have a few days a month to teach apprentices what we would need to know about the health and safety side of tattooing and the environmental issues at hand. Maybe the colleges could do something too.  

Well that’s it for me. I hope people will read this and think  “hey that guy has got a point apprentices are hard done by maybe they do need a little help”.  I’m going to go and carry on my efforts to get an apprenticeship and maybe one day my artwork could be in your magazine. 

See you later Skin Deep’ 


Hi Tom

It is becoming increasingly more difficult to get a tattooing apprenticeship these days, that’s for sure. The thing you have to understand is that most tattooists are really busy trying to earn a living for themselves and teaching an apprentice takes up a lot of their time. Many that I have spoken to have had their fingers burned by the ‘get rich quick’ merchants and people who just see the industry as a ‘cool’ thing to do with no respect for the history and tattooing as a whole.

You may have the best intentions and all I can say is keep up with the drawing and build a good solid portfolio with unique designs and get out there and go to as many tattoo studios as you can to show them that you are really serious about this. Sure, you’ll get lots of knock-backs but keep on at it and hopefully someone will recognise that you are passionate about the industry and see your talent for them selves. 

I really hope you succeed with your quest, I’m certain that your hard work and determination will pay off for you.


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Skin Deep 143 1 March 2007 143