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Thread: Protocol on tipping tattoo artists...

  1. #1
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    Default Protocol on tipping tattoo artists...

    I'm sure this may have been asked before, but I can't seem to find anything in the search box that satisfies my question, which is, how much is one supposed to tip a tattoo artist?

    For example, I am in the process of getting a tattoo that I didn't think would take more than one session, but the artist knows better than me. I got half done this week, and am going back in two to finish it up, and he told me what the end price would be, and had me pay half after my first session, so I tipped him off of that, and do plan to tip him once it's all finished up.

    Are there any general guidelines to follow when it comes to tipping the tattoo artist? Does part of the tattoo cost go into their pocket, or is most of it absorbed in supply and shop keeping costs? Should it be based off the cost of the piece, how much you like it, if the artist wasn't an ass or distracted by other people constantly, etc.?

    Any insight/opinions/tips/answers would be greatly appreciated!

  2. #2
    Awesome Admin Boo's Avatar
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    As for guidelines no - people will have their own ideas on this, some people never tip, some may tip a lot and some just what they have spare.
    Where does the tip go - you'd have to ask your artist, it will vary.

    If an artist did a bad job, had a crappy attitude or other negative point then I'd be inclined not to tip or tip very little but I'd also never go to them again.

    The first time I went to my artist I tipped her as she worked for someone else at a lower rate, as far as I knew she alone got the tip.
    The next time I saw her she has her own shop but I was seriously poor just coming out of a bad situation, I gave her a heads up I couldn't tip and she said it was fine and doesn't expect them.
    Last time I saw her was for an all-day session and I tipped her what I could. The ink, travel and food for me and my partner and someone to look after my son all day was pushing 600 so it wasn't cheap! She was extremely thankful and said any tip is always nice but not necessary. She is the sole artist in her own shop.

    So what it comes down to imo is your experience and if you have the money spare.
    Piercings: 6 lobes, 2 12mm stretched lobes, 4 helices, 3 tragus, daith, 2 nostril, 2.4mm VCH, 2.4mm daith
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  3. #3
    Senior Member Emzyminx's Avatar
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    agree with everything Hazel has said, its down to your own disgression imo. Me and my tattooist always have a good laugh while the work is being done, and i always chuck him a fiver (or like, 3 if i dont have much cash) and tell him to "buy himself a pint". the next time i see him he always says the same thing "that pint was the best one of the night" haha.

    so yeah, what Hazel said basically, it depends on your overall experience and satisfaction with the process and final product
    Emzii

    current:
    lobes x 2 each (1 x 4mm)
    tongue
    Navel
    Outer Conch
    Septum

    retired:
    scaffold
    8mm lobe
    sternum md
    left labret
    navel
    stomach surface x2
    Nostril x2
    right labret

    tattoos:
    several! ask me..



  4. #4
    Magnificent Moderator Kaitey (:'s Avatar
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    ^what both of them said, I also know my artist does pretty well at his new shop money wise so I tend to tip him in Nutella, I'd also tip in home baking but he's allergic to wheat so I need to get some special flour for next time lol!
    I'm Katie, one of the mods on here.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member Emzyminx's Avatar
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    hahaha nutella?! best. tip. ever.
    Emzii

    current:
    lobes x 2 each (1 x 4mm)
    tongue
    Navel
    Outer Conch
    Septum

    retired:
    scaffold
    8mm lobe
    sternum md
    left labret
    navel
    stomach surface x2
    Nostril x2
    right labret

    tattoos:
    several! ask me..



  6. #6
    Magnificent Moderator Kaitey (:'s Avatar
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    I know right?!
    He keeps a jar by his bench and munches on it when he's drawing/thinking/bored/hungry LOL! He's like a kid with the stuff, he just eats it with a spoon
    I'm Katie, one of the mods on here.
    Please read the forum rules!

  7. #7
    Senior Member Emzyminx's Avatar
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    that is actually amazing. *tries to think of a job where i can get tipped with nutella*
    Emzii

    current:
    lobes x 2 each (1 x 4mm)
    tongue
    Navel
    Outer Conch
    Septum

    retired:
    scaffold
    8mm lobe
    sternum md
    left labret
    navel
    stomach surface x2
    Nostril x2
    right labret

    tattoos:
    several! ask me..



  8. #8
    dpack_1
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    In the US it's pretty customary to tip your artist, here in the UK we in the industry don't ever expect a tip, it's nice if you do but we're not offended if you don't and we don't think twice either way.

    I'm still waiting for someone to bring me a cheeseburger in the form of a tip, it's yet to happen though.

  9. #9
    Senior Member xBenji's Avatar
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    I tip between $50 and $100 usually depending on the session length. If its a piece that requires multiple sessions I might do a smaller tip (eg $50) each time and then a larger tip the last session. For one artist who has a big sweet tooth I gave a larger tip and also a whack of his favourite chocolate. Depends on the artist.
    Benji
    Everything was beautiful, and nothing hurt.



  10. #10
    Senior Member SakuraChan's Avatar
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    I didn't tip mine, I paid 800 for it, so I figured I'd paid enough already.

    Current piercings
    22mm lobes | 6mm conch

    Current tattoos
    Indian inspired dotwork side piece (14/08/2013)
    Click to see!


    Retired
    Snakebites | Tongue web | Scaffold | Medusa | Hand Web | Smiley | Nape | Tragus | Vertical tragus | Navel | Chest MD | 8 lobes | Tongue | Nipples

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