What you need to know before you get a tattoo

What you need to know before you get a tattoo

I’ve toyed around with the idea of getting a tattoo for years. I still haven’t found a design that I want to permanently commit to for the rest of my life… quite yet. I’m also a big baby when it comes to needles. I would want a tattoo that tells a story and that could be also hidden if needed. I asked my friend, tattoo artist, Austin Fields to share some insight for people who are also considering getting a tattoo.

Austin’s work has continued to grow in recognition, traveling about 3 weeks out of each month all over the country. His talent speaks for itself in his incredible designs.

Tattoo artist Austin Fields

How long have you been a tattoo artist?

I apprenticed for 1 year and have been tattooing full time for almost 9 years

What influenced you to become a tattoo artist?

My mom is the main reason I wanted to learn to tattoo. She was a great artist herself.

Austin Fields tattoo 8

How would you describe your style?

This is always a hard question to answer for me haha. I would say illustrative/blackwork with a very “out of the box” kind of feel to it.

What tattoo are you most proud of?

Any time someone just gives me creative freedom to do whatever my mind can come up with. Those are always tattoos I’m very proud of. So it’s hard for me to pick just one.

Austin Fields tattoo 11

Austin Fields tattoo 10

Who are some of the tattoo artists that inspire you?

My favorite tattoo artists who I get so much inspiration from are Eric Marcinizyn and Lil B. Tho my style of tattooing is a lot different from them, I still get so much inspiration from every tattoo they post.

What are some of the common misconceptions about tattoo artists?

I have a lot of people tell me I have a really easy or relaxed job due to me just “drawing on people all day” but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Being a tattooer you have no off time. You are always on the job. I stay up to 3:00 or 4:00 am almost every night, drawing or working some kind of art to better myself and my craft.

Austin Fields tattoo 6

What should someone take into consideration when selecting a tattoo shop?

Always look at the work that comes from the shop. Yelp reviews aren’t always accurate. Choose a the shop that makes you feel comfortable and goes the extra mile to make you feel special.

tattoo shop

What should someone consider when selecting a tattoo artist?

Always look at portfolios!! Choose the person who makes you feel excited just to have a piece of their artwork on you. Always trust your gut and never just settle.

Austin Fields tattoo
What is the most painful area of your body to get a tattoo?

For me it was definitely me head haha a close 2nd would be my stomach. Anything on your torso definitely is going to be painful.

Austin Fields tattoo 7

What do you need to consider before your first tattoo?

First, make sure you really have thought about what you want. Second, make sure you pick the best artist who does the style you are wanting. Third, be loose with your boundaries of the design and you’ll end up a very happy customer!

outside tattoo shop

What can you do to help communicate the style of the tattoo you want?

I like when my clients send reference pictures of the style they like. If it’s pictures of my tattoos or someone who does a similar style of tattoo, it just helps us not have to guess as much. I’m very fortunate that the people who want tattooed by me just let me do my thing for them!

Are there any techniques that are beneficial for someone to do while receiving a tattoo?

I tell everyone to just focus on breathing and it’ll kind of help a little bit. Also a good conversation always keeps your mind off of the pain a bit.

inside tattoo shop

What should you do if you are not satisfied with your tattoo?

Be honest with your artist. Most of the time if there is something you aren’t thrilled with we can go back and fix it up for ya. If the tattoo is just absolutely not what you were imagining then try and find a tattoo artist you respect and talk to them about your options.

What do you wish you could tell 1st time clients?

I’d like to tell everyone to just take a deep breath and relax. Also don’t listen to your friends opinions about a design, go with how you feel.

What information can the client give that is the most helpful to their tattoo artist?

What I look for when I’m emailing about an upcoming appointment is…. 1. Just a basic idea of what they want. 2. Style in which they are wanting it. 3. Where on the body. 4. What their budget is.

Are there any parts of the body that you would not recommend for a 1st time client?

I would say try and be modest with your first tattoo. Don’t get anything in places that could jeopardize a job or future jobs.

What tips do you have for the healing process?

Keep it as clean as possible. Use aquaphor 3 times a day and you shouldn’t have a problem

Thanks again to Austin for sharing your insight with us. You can connect with Austin on instagram to find out what city he will be in next.

Austin Fields is a tattoo artist, currently living in Lexington KY. Austin works in the blackwork tattoo style with a cool out of the box spin on his designs. He travels the country to different tattoo shops/conventions collecting experience and doing one of a kind tattoos. Austin has been in Inked Magazine, Tattoo flash magazine, and featured on countless tattoo Instagram pages (blackworkers, tttism, tatsoul, ect.) He also sells prints of his black ink drawings and large paintings in different mediums. Also working on new t-shirt designs and different wood working projects. Austin currently works at Charmed Life tattoo in downtown Lexington KY.

Austin Fields bio pic


8 thoughts on “What you need to know before you get a tattoo”

  1. I love the advice you gave about going with how you feel when choosing a tattoo and not asking friends for opinions. Tattoos can be a great way to express oneself, so it’s important to work with custom tattoo artists that can make your vision a reality. My sister is thinking about getting a tattoo, so I’ll recommend she find a parlor that caters to her desires.

  2. I made the mistake on my first tattoo. Make sure when they put on the stencil to look closely at the placement and size for it will be there permanently.

  3. Thanks for the information on what you should know about before you go in and get a tattoo. One thing that a lot of people do is get intoxicated and then get a tattoo on a whim. With that being said, you will have that for the rest of your life and so it is best to make the decision when you are completely conscious. Thanks for the post!

  4. That would be a great question for Austin. You might want to reach him on instagram from the link in the article.

  5. In your article, you stated that I have a lot of people tell me I have a really easy or relaxed job due to me just “drawing on people all day” but that couldn’t be further from the truth. My brother has been wanting to get a new tattoo but isn’t sure what type he should get. What kind of tattoo design is the hardest to draw?

  6. It is a good idea to know what you want before you go in. That way no hasty decisions will be made. I don’t think you want to go into a tattoo shop and make a hasty decision only to realize that you don’t like it. It is permanent so it is best to know what you want beforehand!

  7. Great post Nedra! I have thought about getting one also, but can’t commit to what I want. As a developer I also enjoy clients who give me creative freedom. It lets me use my noggin for what I went to school for.

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