How to Email a Tattoo Artist: A Guide from a Seasoned Tattoo Professional

How to Email a Tattoo Artist

Hello everyone! As a professional tattoo artist with over 26 years of experience. I’ve received more emails than I can count from potential clients wanting to book a session or get a consultation. From this vast sea of correspondences, I’ve noticed a few recurring patterns. Today, I will share with you some effective strategies on how to email a tattoo artist. This guide should streamline the process for both you, the client, and us, the tattoo artists.

When it comes to emailing me, brevity isn’t always the best approach. Sending a vague and concise email like “I want to get a tattoo. Are you available?” may not get the desired response. I have a hectic schedule and juggle a variety of tasks, from drawing and tattooing to dealing with inquiries and even administrative work.

However, not all clients are aware of the best way to communicate with a tattoo artist via email. Fear not!!! In this article, I’ll walk you through how to craft the perfect email to make your tattooing experience smooth and successful. Time is a precious resource. To minimize correspondence and make sure your tattoo artist understands your vision, follow these tips.

Write the details in an email

1. Design

The design is the concept or theme of your tattoo. It’s what you want to get inked on your body. It can be anything from an abstract pattern, a realistic portrait, a piece of line art, to a geometric shape. You should be able to explain the design in words or even better, provide an image of something similar. Be sure to communicate if the design carries any personal or symbolic meaning to you.

2. Size

The size of your tattoo is another important factor to communicate. It directly impacts the time required for the tattooing process and, subsequently, the cost. You can express the size as specific dimensions (e.g., “I want a tattoo that’s 4 inches in diameter”) or use relative terms (e.g., “I want a small tattoo on my wrist”).

3. Body Placement (Location)

The location of your tattoo can affect the complexity and comfort of the process. Not all areas of the body are equal in terms of pain during tattooing and some artists may specialize in certain areas over others. Indicate where you want your tattoo – it could be on your arm, wrist, back, chest, leg, etc.

4. References

Reference images are very useful in helping your tattoo artist visualize what you’re after. They can be other tattoos, drawings, photos, or any other visual content that conveys the look, style, or elements of the tattoo you want. You can attach these images to your email or link to them if they’re online.

5. Permission to Get Artwork Tattooed

If you want a tattoo of an existing piece of artwork, especially if it’s a recognizable or copyrighted piece, it’s respectful and often necessary to get permission from the original artist or copyright holder. This can be a complicated process, but it’s crucial to avoid infringing on someone else’s intellectual property.

6. Color

Do you want your tattoo in black and grey, or full color? If color, do you have preferences for certain colors, or color combinations? This can significantly impact the design process, so it’s important to discuss your preferences and any potential implications with your artist.

7. ‘Maybe’ Ideas

These are tentative ideas or components you might like to incorporate but aren’t 100% committed to. These could be additional design elements, a background, adding a specific quote or word, etc. It gives the artist a broader idea of what you’re considering and helps them to come up with a design that aligns with your vision.

An example of a well-structured and detailed email to a tattoo artist

Subject: Tattoo Inquiry – [Your Name]

Dear [Tattoo Artist’s Name],

My name is [Your Name] and I’m an admirer of your work, which I discovered on [Instagram/your website/a friend’s recommendation]. The level of detail in your designs and your distinctive style resonated with me, particularly your work on [mention a specific piece you liked and briefly why you liked it].

I am interested in getting a tattoo and believe that your artistry would be a perfect fit for my vision. I have an idea for a design, which I’ve outlined below:

  • Design: I’m looking for a tattoo that incorporates elements of nature, particularly a detailed forest scene with a wolf as the central figure. The design carries a personal symbolic meaning to me, as it represents my connection with nature and my spirit animal, the wolf.
  • Size: I envision the tattoo to be about 5 inches tall and 7 inches wide.
  • Body Placement: I’d like this on my upper arm, from shoulder to elbow.
  • References: Attached to this email, you’ll find some images that I feel capture the essence of what I’m after. They include various styles and elements that I’d love to see incorporated into my tattoo.
  • Color: I’m leaning towards a black and grey color palette to give the design a classic, timeless look.

I also have a ‘maybe’ idea: I’m contemplating adding a small moon in the background to symbolize growth and transformation, but I would appreciate your artistic input on this aspect.

I understand that a design of this complexity and size will require several sessions and a fair budget. Could you please provide an estimate of the cost and your earliest availability? I also understand that you require a deposit to confirm bookings. Please let me know how I can process this, as well as details about your cancellation policy.

Thank you for taking the time to consider my request. I am truly excited about the possibility of having my tattoo done by you and look forward to hearing from you soon.

Best Regards,
[Your Name]

Please note that this is just a sample email and should be adapted based on your personal details and tattoo idea.

Why Email a Tattoo Artist?

In today’s technologically advanced world, tattoo artists have adapted their communication practices, utilizing the benefits provided by the digital era, including email. However, before jumping straight into your inbox, it’s important to understand the context in which tattoo artists typically respond to emails.

Tattoo artists often set aside time outside their working hours to catch up on correspondence. Hence, if you have the opportunity, visiting the tattoo studio in person could potentially yield quicker responses and provide a more immediate exchange of information.

However, even after you’ve initiated contact via email, most tattoo artists will want a face-to-face meeting before confirming your booking. This in-person interaction ensures that both you and the artist are on the same page regarding the design, placement, size, and other crucial aspects of the tattooing process. The exceptions are often made for clients coming from out of town or those traveling a significant distance to get the tattoo, for whom this requirement might be adjusted.

For those planning on getting a small, straightforward design, you might consider popping into the tattoo shop to see if they offer walk-in appointments. In such cases, the need for extensive email communication or advanced bookings may not be necessary.

In conclusion, while emailing can be a beneficial tool in communicating with your tattoo artist, it’s equally important to balance this with in-person interactions to ensure the best outcome for your tattoo journey.


What do you say in an email to a tattoo artist?

When emailing a tattoo artist, you need to be polite, professional, and concise. Begin by introducing yourself and mentioning where you discovered their work. Then, outline your tattoo idea, discussing the design, size, color, body placement, and any symbolic meaning. Attach or link to any reference images you have. Ask about their availability, cost estimate, booking process, deposit, and cancellation policy. End the email by expressing gratitude for their time and considerati

How do I make a tattoo booking email?

Creating a tattoo booking email is quite straightforward if you follow these steps:
Subject Line: Keep it simple and clear.
Greeting: Start with a warm, polite greeting using the artist’s name.
Introduction: Introduce yourself and mention where you discovered the artist’s work.
Tattoo Description: Explain your tattoo idea in detail. Discuss design, size, color, body placement, and provide references if you have them.
Logistical Questions: Ask about their availability, estimated cost, booking and cancellation policies.
Conclusion: Thank the artist for their time, express your excitement about the potential tattoo, and sign off with your name.

What to do if a tattoo artist doesn’t reply?

If a tattoo artist doesn’t reply to your email, be patient. Remember that they are often busy with clients and may not have had a chance to respond yet. Wait for about a week, then send a polite follow-up email to check if they received your initial message. If you still don’t hear back, it’s possible that they may be fully booked, missed your email, or your proposal isn’t something they can take on at the moment. At this point, you might want to consider reaching out to other tattoo artists who align with your desired style.

Bottom Line

In conclusion, the importance of effectively emailing a tattoo artist cannot be overstated. This crucial first step in your tattoo journey can significantly impact the final outcome. Remember, it’s not just about telling the artist what you want, but also about showing respect for their craft and building a solid professional relationship.

By carefully detailing your tattoo’s design, size, body placement, including necessary references, obtaining permissions for existing artworks, specifying color preferences, and brainstorming ‘maybe’ ideas, you provide a comprehensive brief for your artist. This enables them to envision your idea clearly and propose a design that aligns with your vision.

Email remains an essential tool for communication with your tattoo artist, considering its professionalism, the convenience of detailing ideas, the ability to keep a record, and respect for the artist’s working hours. However, be prepared for the possibility of in-person meetings before finalizing the booking to ensure you and your artist are on the same page.

So, arm yourself with these tips, take that first step, and initiate contact with your chosen tattoo artist. Good luck on your tattoo journey, and remember: the better your preparation and communication, the more likely you are to end up with a tattoo you’ll love for a lifetime.

And, if your first email doesn’t get a reply, don’t get disheartened. Tattoo artists are often busy, and sometimes your first choice might not work out. Remember, there are many talented artists out there, and the right one for your project is just an email away!