Tattoo Sleeve Tips

11.08.15

Pointers for Getting Your Next Sleeve Tattoo

So you think you want a tattoo sleeve, huh? You’re not alone. The popularity of these arm-covering tattoos has only risen in recent years. Once only thought to be for bikers, criminals, sailors and other hard individuals, tattoos are (generally speaking) more welcomed in today’s society, which has prompted millions of men and women to flock to their favorite shops for some new ink. A handful of these people have every intention of getting a full-blown tattoo sleeve. Whether they begin as a bunch of smaller tattoos or large and in charge from the get-go, sleeve tattoos tell a story that’s unique to their wearers. In any case, here are some tattoo sleeve tips for when you head out to get yours.

Scale and Placement

Regardless of if you want a full, half or quarter sleeve tattoo, you need to consider its size and placement. Oftentimes, people start out with one or a few tattoos on their arms and then opt to get more and more. If you think you will want to fill your arm in with a tattoo sleeve, tell your artist that there’s a possibility of you doing so. That way, he or she can make decisions regarding the right scale and placement. 

Choose the Right Artist

There are a myriad of tattoo artists out there who each have their own distinct styles and tattooing methods. Your tattoo sleeve needs to tell your story in a way that’s fitting to your personality and character, so it’s important to find an artist who can tell that story the right way. So do your research before booking your tattoo sleeve session. Whether you go online and look at artists’ portfolios or go to a shop in-person, you need to scope out the environment and schedule a consultation. If you and your consulting tattoo artist don’t really hit it off, by all means go out and find another one. A tattoo sleeve is far too big and important to have done by someone who doesn’t really get you.

Will Your Sleeve Have Color?

If you want your tattoo sleeve to incorporate some color, be sure to look closely at the design your artist draws up. If you don’t like blue and the design incorporates it, be sure to speak up and tell your artist because there’s no going back once he or she has started the tattooing process. Also, if you’re so inclined, ask your artist’s opinion about what colors would look good on your skin. There are many different skin types and tones, and the fact of the matter is that some colors simply won’t look as aesthetically on some people as they do on others.

Be Ready to Sit In that Chair—for a While

Due to their size and extreme detail, tattoo sleeves always require multiple sessions to complete. Depending on their designs, these types of tattoos can take anywhere from 15 hours to more than 40 hours to finish. So if you’re the kind of person who cannot sit still for several hours at a time, learn to distract yourself or perhaps reconsider your decision to get a tattoo sleeve. You’re going to be sitting in that tattoo chair for a while.

Your Sleeve Will Need Filler

Regardless of if your tattoo sleeve is comprised of a handful of individual tattoos or an all-in-one design, you will need filler or transitions for a truly seamless look and feel. Filler/transitions help connect one tattoo to another, bridge the gap between subjects and make all the components work together to tell your story. Whenever you’re talking with your tattoo artist, keep these matters in mind and ask how he or she will approach the filler.

Ready to Rock a Sleeve?

If you are ready for the commitment of getting a tattoo sleeve, consider these pointers as you work with your artist to tell your own unique story through ink. Feel free to peruse our artists’ portfolios, and don’t hesitate to contact us for a consultation. We’ll be more than happy to discuss the many options you have available to you!