How to Tattoo forums like www.teachmetotattoo.com are great resources that are available to people just starting out. Matter of fact, the owner of teachmetotattoo.com, Charles Jordan, wrote one of our how to tattoo books we sell. The great thing about these forums are there are people all contributing their input toward similar goals. Everyone in the forum is at some varying degree of expertise and since almost everyone posting started out the same, many will be willing to answer questions that they themselves asked when they first started. A lot of these forums are comprised of new school artists, the generally snub old school artist crowd usually stay away.
We recommend refraining from asking too many questions in the general tattoo forums on the internet. Those forums tend to have a higher number of scratcherhaters (people who have an utter disgust of newbies) and on some forums, they will tear you apart with ridicule. From my understanding, the reason for this is 2 fold. One, is that they genuinely care about their community and do not want scratchers that don’t adhere to strict codes of hygiene to conduct their business. For this noble reason, they simply don’t want people to get hurt. I respect this. There are some people that simply should not be doing tattoos.
The second reason is about greed, the more qualified tattoo artists there are, the more competition they have to get work. This I do not respect and I’ll explain my view. I am a firm believer in if you are good at what you do, no matter how many people there are in your field, people will still find you. This doesn’t just cover whether or not you are known for doing great tattoos. This also covers the more basic fundamentals of being human, like are you courteous, how is your customer service, etc.. People develop a unique relationship with their chosen tattoo artist and sometimes customers become great friends.
So if you are starting out and have no place to look up information and are not getting any help locally, check out one of these forums. Note that while these forums can provide a good deal of information, NOTHING is a replacement for an apprentice with a reputable tattoo shop. We may be a tattoo supply company but we recommend to all our customers to pursue a proper apprenticeship before going on to calling themselves a tattoo artist.