DIY Till I Die

allesistscheisse is going to help me out with today’s public service announcement. One of the great things about tattoos is that most people can’t tell good tattoo work from bad tattoo work. It’s a pro but also a con. The primary thing is that it makes the wearer of the tattoo happy. When I posted Norm’s vimby video, a comment was made that you could get good script from any reasonably good tattoo shop, which I wholeheartedly disagree with. I know some amazing tattooers who just can’t do good lettering. One of the quotes that I’ve heard is that “good tattoos are ruined by bad lettering”, like if you see an amazingly well done sacred heart with a really cruddy “Mom” in the banner. It just kills the tattoo.
As long as Kevin is happy, that’s what matters in the long run.

“homemade tattoos rule, taken from my favourite book about tattoos ever from thomas jeppe.”


See more in Lettering Tattoos (Tattoos)


So what is the lesson that we’ve learned today? Friends don’t let friends give each other home made tattoos. Unless of course your friend happens to be a kick ass tattooer.

19 thoughts on “DIY Till I Die

  1. Not a fan of home-done mods.
    Unless you happen to have an autoclave laying around it’s NOT sterile. Risky and dumb.
    Plus, the stuff you see that people have done at home looks–generally speaking, terrible. Which makes the rest of us that care about our health and tattoo enough to pay a professional, look bad.

  2. UnconventionalLove:
    I think that what you say is true in a lot if not MOST cases, however as a total generalization I disagree. Some people have their own reasons for doing something themselves. Whether their reasons are good or bad, their probably going to keep doing it regardless of what we say. The best that we can do is uphold the standards we hold in our community, only give business to people who also uphold those standards, but I don’t think one can accuse all those who perform things themselves as not caring about their health and tattoos enough to pay a professional.

    How do you feel about performing piercing or other mods on oneself?

  3. @1
    I completely disagree. While there is risk, its a risk that can be minimal, and with simple precautions infection is entirely avoidable.

    simple ways are sterilized equipment and jewelry. gloves. clean work space. since most shops will autoclave for a small fee, doing your own modifications is a very rewarding process.

    and while you may not find it appealing, if they like it, then who gives a flying fuck what you think.

  4. homemade tattoos that celebrate their DIY ness are alright. but i knew a guy who would tattoo out of his house, and his tattoos looked like shit. he just wasnt good at drawing. he wasnt very good at tattooing. i felt bad for all the people who went in and got work from him. they just didnt know much better i guess.

  5. homemade inkage??? bring on the MRSA!!!
    being in the medical field, you would be shocked how many folk decide to have “tattoo parties”. not discrediting the artists, b/c I have met kids that are quite talented and can’t afford art school. but I always gripe about doing this. not safe, and people are not clean.

  6. Home done tattoos can be okay, especially if the artist is good. This one is full of irony so I enjoy it. He clearly knows that there are better artists out there, his chest piece above proves that. This one is just funny.


  7. I DONT LIKE THIS POST AT ALL!!!!!!!!!! Sends the wrong message to the general public who are not involved in the industry and any tom, dick and harry that want to buy a kit on line and start tattooing out of their kitchen. I get the DIY joke ha ha funny for us that are in the industry, not funny for the tools that think they can become a legit tattooist this way!!!! Thats my opinion on the matter and yes I have an asshole to;) Cheers

  8. “He clearly knows that there are better artists out there, his chest piece above proves that”

    Maybe its just the picture, but his chest piece looks incredibly scarred. Look at how much it is puffed out. Not to mention crooked and the letters under it are nasty. Bring on the MRSA!

    “since most shops will autoclave for a small fee, doing your own modifications is a very rewarding process”

    Any shop that will autoclave a homemade tattoo machine or anything else for a scratcher should be AVOIDED at all cost!

  9. @#1: oh yeah, because all the cultures and tribes that have influenced modern day body modification all had autoclaves.

  10. as far as sterilization is concerned u can pretty much get everything u need pre sterilized and disposable nowadays. owning or working from a shop doesnt automaticaly make someone good. lots of people that work in shops are shit and there are also people who work from home who are very conciencious about hygiene and put out good work. obviosly this is not the case in this photo but u cant diss home modding as a lot of what our community and especially this website has flourished from is d.i.y and or home modding.

  11. Bottom line…Do it yerself tattoo’s have there place in tattoo culture. Please respect the craft in all it’s forms.

  12. word, on the lettering note,
    i have seen so many “heavy hitters’ that just cant lay down lettering.
    nothing blows more than seeing some top notch technical work with stick lettering in giant banners.some guys maybe just forget the basics, or they think theyre too good for them

  13. i’ve had plenty of home work done as well as witnessed it myself (tattooing and piercing) and the persons on the receiving end have always been very happy with the result. as has been mentioned, if you know what you’re doing and you’re clean, it shouldn’t be a problem

  14. you know, some of the “worlds best” started tattooing out of their own home

    i dont care tbh, if he wants to do his own tattoos why not? if hes happy its all the better, unlike the kids from the BAF forums who are so far up their own bums about self modification (yet the shop sells autoclaved jewellery!) im all for doing what ever you want to yourself, if your happy with the out come, if you dont like, go away, you cant tell people what to do to their own body.

    as for people who dont know any better? their own fualt, the info is out there, the good tattoo artist are out there, thay just have to be bothered to look up both.

  15. @7
    If people are dumb enough to be influenced to do something they saw on the internet, without knowing much about it, that’s their problem. Just by having a tattoo/body mod website, it’s “encouraging” 13-year-olds to go run out and get stuff done when they’re not ready and too young to do most of it anyway. “Tools” will find inspiration anywhere, so what are we supposed to do? Censor the internet for the morons? No.

  16. Okay, let me start by saying that there is a HUGE difference between a legitimate tattoo artist/piercer/mod artist that is working out of their house and has a full shop set-up, and Tom, Dick or Harry buying some jewellery at a metal store and a needle from goodness-knows-where.

    @ #10 – I TOTALLY AGREE! I was about to say – even his tattooed lobes are blown out! That BME face tattoo is really scarred. Ick. And if I ran a shop I would definitely NOT autoclave Joe Blow’s tattoo machine or piercing supplies for a “small fee.”

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