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If you are not familiar with the Two Dollar Tattoo Project please CLICK HERE! to get the 411 or read the sidebar info. To clarify this project is for industry professionals and not meant to be a way for the general public to get a tattoo for only Two Dollars. Please be sure to click on the images to see them large enough to really appreciate them. Our little project is run exclusively by the volunteer time of working professionals and the generosity of our industry sponsors. Help keep the lights on here, please comment if you like what you see and check out our great sponsors. To see our recent winners click here!

Saturday, February 6, 2010


There appears to be a little confusion, so let's set the record straight. This is an INDUSTRY PROJECT. Although the support of our clients and the general public is MUCH APPRECIATED, the 'two dollar tattoo project" is mainly about professionals working with professionals to begin exploring some of the dark corners of our craft. Many (but not all) artists view the single needle as a formidable foe. Perhaps, at one point during their apprenticeships, or somewhere along the way of their career, the subject was brought up, and they were told, "Woah... single needles will cut someone up! don't play with those bad boys!" or "That kinda stuff is for guys in prison messin' around with a walkman motor".

Personally, I see it as yet another tool, used for specific applications. It's not for everything, but when you learn how to use it properly, it's a great addition to your arsenal.

It seems that there are some individuals who don't truly understand the rules of this project, or the novelty aspect behind the "two dollar tattoo". Like any tattoo, even a single needle tattoo will age. It may age wonderfully, or it may end up looking like an awful blob. It can be a crap-shoot. Much depends upon the design as well as the artist.

ONE SHOULD NOT EXPECT TO JUST WALK INTO A TATTOO PARLOUR IN HOPES OF GETTING A TATTOO FOR $2. The parameters of the project state that the SIZE of the tatto should be that of a $2 coin. The symbolic $2 coin is passed between recipient and artist. I don't know of any shops that will be running specials and offering 'ittee bittee' tattoos for $2. Sure, if someone feels like putting a sign in their window, fine. Do what you want, but in my case, the supplies I use and the time I take to do ANY tattoo outweigh a $2 price tag.

That being said, be aware that although these tattoos are small in scale, they can take quite a bit of time and patience to execute. Some take longer than others, but they average about an hour to complete. Depending upon the design, I believe that most artists would easily charge between $100 - $200 for such a piece. Prices may vary, but so does each shop's hourly rate. The rate in my studio currently varies between $125/hr - $180/hr, depending upon the artist. There are some artists out there who SPECIALIZE in single-needle tattooing, and their price tags reflect their high level of expertise.

Long story short, a tiny little single-needle tattoo is:
A) a novelty
B) a crap-shoot on how it will heal and look over time
C) part of a project for INDUSTRY PROFESSIONALS to test and explore their skills
D) if you go to an artist asking for one, don't be surprised if they charge you industry rates

If you have been fortunate enough to receive one, congratulations! I hope it looks great! I hope it heals well! I hope you have submitted some nice, large images (MINIMUM size of 600px x 800px - send us the biggest pictures your camera will shoot!) to be posted in the blog - we can't use them if they are too small.

Thanks for taking an interest in our project!

- Alie K.


George Brown said...


chris said...

You should post this in BIG BLOCK letters across the top of the wbepage, and the facebook group.