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Tattoo conventions vary state to state, based on local laws and regulations. However, the basis is mostly the same. The tattoo conventions consist of many local, out of state, and sometimes foreign artists. This gathering allows shops to showcase their artwork, most will set up and preform previously scheduled tattoos in front of onlookers.

Conventions are a vital part to getting the shops name out, and often times can establish a positive reputation. You will get foreign artists spotlighted at local shops, that will usually stay between one to two days upon request if they have enough appointments. It is not only a good way to meet local artists, but to get a tattoo that would otherwise be un-available.

Letting the convention artists run freely with the artwork is by far the best idea, it gives them the opportunity to showcase their work and often times it will turn out beautifully. There are contests that are held at the conventions as well, usually for the best overall piece on sight, previous tattoos, and artwork. Generally all that is awarded is boasting rights, however in some instances cash awards, and prizes are handed out.

If you are looking to get your first tattoo, this would be the place to go. You will be able to narrow down your selection of shops by artwork alone. However, after the initial meeting the steps in prior articles should be taken. You need to scope out the shop, make sure the environment is something you can live with.

Most tattoo conventions aren’t quite as sterile as they should be. Dividers should be set up between working areas to prevent cross-contamination between clientele. Be wary about getting inked at the convention itself, but enjoy the surroundings. It is a good place to take in the history of tattoos, and most of the times showcase a form of “tap”, which is on its own is an extraordinary form of art.


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