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Tattooing dark skin

I'm looking for tips on improving my work on darker skin tones. I'd love to have as much confidence working on darker skin as i do on lighter skin. I feel like these clients should get as high quality of work as anyone else but unfortunately my knowledge is slightly limited in this area.
Any advice and tips would be greatly appreciated.


RE:Tattooing dark skin


Tattooing dark skin depending on the level of darkness can be a bit tricky. most artist want to be aggressive and want to pack in color simply because the skin is darker and they feel it needs to be saturated more in order to see the ink. The trick to tattooing dark skin is to place the ink in the upper part of the second layer of skin. this will allow less skin interfering with lights ability to get to the ink. for example, if you dropped a blue marble in the ocean, the further down it goes, the harder it is to see it, the reason for this is because light has a harder time reaching the marble the further down it goes. this light theory is the same when placing ink in the skin, if you bury the ink too deep it will be harder to see it because light can't reach the pigment. make sense?
Also there are two main types of dark skin, blue tint and orange tint. you want to be mindful of the colors you use on these skin tones. some color will show up well on one vs the other. so do your homework when it comes to color theory.
Also dark skin will irritate differently than light tones in that when dark skin is irritated it will turn a brown tone as opposed to a redness that you typically see in white skin. you want to be mindful of this because the irritation caused with brown skin will interfere with your ability to see the ink. so a tip to help when it comes to putting in any level of saturation is you have to watch the bruising of the skin and not so much the ink itself. if the bruising of the skin is even and smooth, then the ink you place will heal that way.... many artist have a hard time with this and end up overworking the skin, and is the reason why you see a lot of scarring on dark skin people.. there are many other specific tips on this topic but I hope this answers you question.

P.S. to everyone on here I apologize that I have been away for a while. I have become extremely busy the last two year with my new studio and it has taken up a lot of my time. i will try my best to drop in here from time to time. shout out to mike, it good to have the forum back up and running. hope all it well man.


Stephen Stacey
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