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 A friend decided that she was going to get her first tattoo yesterday, so I came along for the ride.  The shop owner of Studio City Tattoo, Clay, was kind enough to allow me to take pictures.

The picture to the left shows the outline of her tattoo, before the artist, known as “Slim”, began his work in earnest.

 This third picture shows the outline after Slim has begun work on the tattoo.  He was very attentive to detail, but kept the conversation jocular and just plain fun.  If you want him to be more aware of what he’s saying, he’ll edit his language, but we let him know early on that we’re not shy types.   It made for an even more delightful couple hours .

The completed outline can be seen in this fourth shot.  My friend’s back is smeared with ink that wasn’t completely wiped off.  So goes the tattoo trade.

Shading has begun on the tattoo.  You can see the inner details beginning to take shape under Slim’s expert hand.  Shading is done before the real coloring of the tattoo begins.

Once the shading process is completed, Slim starts applying color to the tattoo.

After the main color work has been completed, Slim begins to add highlights with white (yes, white) ink.  He’ll do this in several places on the tattoo to help create depth.

Here you see the completed tattoo, just before Slim put healing salve on it and a sheet of plastic film wrap. 

A huge thank you goes out to Slim for his kindness, creativity (my friend gave him a lot of latitude with her design) and just plain good-guyness.

 

And I couldn’t end this without a picture of the proprietor of this fine establishment, Clay, a true golem of a man:

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