Tattoo artist shares four reasons why they’d refuse to ink someone

There are several things a tattoo artist considers before they go ahead with a design – and while it may end up with you feeling disappointed in the short-term, it’s better to find a suitable artist

Tattoo artist shares reasons why they wouldn’t ink someone

Getting a tattoo is one of the biggest decisions you can make – after all, once you get one it’s going to be with you for life.

You’ll probably spend hours thinking about a design before you do take the plunge to get inked, or it might be something you’ve chosen after several years of thinking it through.

We often think that all the decision-making comes from the customer’s side and tattoo artists are keen to get going as soon as you arrive at the studio.

In fact the opposite as true and tattoo artists need to make sure you’re certain about getting permanent body art – and they may even refuse to tattoo you.

A tattoo artist may reject a client for several reasons


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Speaking to Insider, Richard Richardson, a tattoo artist from Scotland, shared four reasons why he would refuse to ink someone.

Picking a design the artist doesn’t specialise in

You can choose to have pretty much anything tattooed on your body, but that doesn’t mean every artist can successfully create the design you want.

Richard told Insider: “You go to a tattoo artist for their style. If you came to me asking for a coloured tattoo, honestly I’m not very good at colour and I wouldn’t feel comfortable with it.”

He advises that the best thing to do is look at an artist’s designs before you go so you know that they’re the right one for you.

The artist isn’t interested the subject

A tattoo artist may back down if they don’t feel they can do the design justice if it’s not a topic they are passionate about.

Richard said: “I don’t really like football. Chances are, I’m not going to put my heart and soul into a football tattoo.”

A tattoo artist may not want to copy another artist’s design


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The artist wants you to be sure about the tattoo

As a tattoo is a long-term commitment and the artist needs to be sure that you’re happy with the idea.

For example, if you’re getting a name tattooed then you need to be sure it’s right, especially if it’s a partner. Richard said he would stencil the name first so the client can be sure it’s what they want.

The artist wants to create original work

If a client wants the same tattoo they’ve seen on someone else the artist may refuse as they don’t want to recreate the same work as someone else.

Instead they may play around with the design to create something original, rather than just copying another artist’s tattoo.

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