PP: Reflecting on my time at Shades of Ink.

During my time at Shades of Ink I have learnt allot. Not only the actual setting up of equipment but also how the importance of having to work on a time frame. Obviously working in the studio and having deadlines at uni has already meant that I have had to make sure I work to deadlines, but the fact I was working at at a business with paying customers has made me understand just how important it is to work to a strict time frame. While designing tattoos for customers I realised just how much work goes into running commercial artistic business as if you slip up the workload becomes so heavy it is very difficult to keep on top of everything. The interpersonal skills I have learnt as well dealing with clients I feel has also changed my outlook on the people who I am creating work for and has also made me feel much more confident in my ability as a commercial artist.

While working at Shades I have also come to realise the importance of keeping a clean and tidy studio space. This links back to the time management and workload of working in a commercial setting as if the work space isn't clean and organised it can mean that one loses time trying to find and set up one's work space. The vast amount of information and books Vince has at his tattoo studio has also made me more interested and grateful for resource material as it not only gave me more of a contextual understanding of the work Vince does but also allowed me to find resources useful to designing good looking tattoos and flash.

Another importance of keeping a clean space is that of hygiene. Obviously when working in the studio the risk of having mess isn't as great as having it in that of a tattoo studio but is nonetheless good housekeeping I have found can go a long way.

The equipment used at Shades is also something I wish to take away with me to that of that studio here in Bath. As I don't tattoo in my practice, using tattoo machines isn't exactly imperative to my success as a painter, however I realised the usefulness of having equipment such as a light box. This I feel will really help me when trying to create more stylised and clean designs, something which I feel would really help in the sketching up of some of my art.

I would also really like to start incorporating my work with more contemporary or deviant forms of art such as that of tattooing. I feel that this very stylised form of art would juxtapose very well with my realistic and representational approach to painting and will hopefully lead my practice to new avenues. I also plan on potentially picking up my own tattoo machine and practicing in my own time as I feel this would be a very handy skill to have, especially if I plan on spending more time in a tattoo studio later down the line.

To start my move down this avenue of art I have started sketching up new designs with the focus being that of tattoo flash. This stylised form of art means that I focus less on the realistic and more of the composition of a drawing and also allows to be more expressive and free with the way I work. below I have some examples of this and it will be interesting to see where this takes me.


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