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Tattoo Artist
Tattooing has been practised by many cultures dating back to 200 BC. There are two types of tattoo artists: professional and amateur. The professional has a tattoo licence and provides a safe service.

Tattoo artists use an electrically powered instrument to inject the tattoo and the design is fitted with about seven needles that are placed in a needle bar. The tattoos are placed on various parts of the body.

Some people apply their own tattoos or obtain tattoos from a friend. This is the way in which an amateur will work. These tattoos are done in unhygienic conditions, using objects such as pens and needles, carbon, mascara and dirt.

Reputable tattoo artists do not tattoo minors without the written consent of their parents. Their work area must be kept clean and have sufficient lighting. Tattoo artists usually have a heat sterilisation machine that sterilizes equipment after tattooing a customer.

Sterilized tattoo needles must be thrown away in a biohazard container after use. Ink should never be poured back into the bottle it must be thrown away after each procedure. Tattoo artists need to use latex gloves before doing the tattooing on customers to protect themselves from infection. Good tattoo artists advise their customers on how to clean their tattoo to prevent infection.

Satisfying Aspects
- meeting lots of new people
- working with people
- working with your hands; being creative
- having customers happy with your designs

Demanding aspects
- concentrating for long periods might cause eyestrain
- being criticised by people who are against tattoos

- a least 16 years old
- artistic and creative
- good eyesight
- responsible and safety conscious
- accurate and talented
- able to work with people
- able to calm nervous people

School Subjects
Minimum Grade 9.

Compulsory Subjects: None
Recommended Subjects: Visual Arts, Life Sciences

In-service training may be provided under the supervision of an experienced tattoo artist.

- tattoo studios
- self-employment, with enough experience, can set up own studio

Further information can be obtained from tattoo artists      
Tel: 082 230 CALL
Tel: 082 230 2255
Fax: (011) 388-1045