First tattoo? Syracuse artist offers 5 tips to consider if you're thinking about inking

5 tips to consider if you’re thinking about inking

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First tattoo? Syracuse artist offers 5 tips to consider if you're thinking about inking

DJ Rose owner of Halo Tattoo. Halo Tattoo on Marshall Street gives Syracuse University students and area residents a clean, safe, and welcoming environment to get inked. Scott Schild | sschild@syracuse.com SYRACUSE, N.Y. — DJ Rose has seen it all. After 17 years running Halo Tattoo on Marshall Street with co-owner Ron Perry, Rose has inked fresh-faced students, sage grandparents and everyone in between.

Both of Rose’s parents had tattoos and he always liked how they looked. Growing up, he never connected a stigma to them. Now a father of four, Rose says his children draw on each other, but never express real interest in tattoos.

"It’s so normal to them," said Rose. "It never will be rebellious to them."

Once taboo, tattoos are simply too common to be considered fringe anymore. In December 2013, Pew Research Center reported 45 million Americans (of all ages) have at least one tattoo. Based on the most recent U.S. census , that’s about one out of seven Americans, and those numbers aren’t on the decline.

If you’re thinking about inking in 2015, possibly for the first time, Rose offers five considerations before stopping by one of Central New York’s dozens of tattoo studios.

1. Rookie mistakes

Rose says the biggest mistake people make is poor communication, both in articulating what tattoo they want and failing to heed the advice of a professional.

During our interview, a young woman walked in asking for two simple X’s on her hip. It was her first tattoo ever. Rose grilled her on exactly how she wanted "two simple X’s" to look like. Lined up next to each other? Touching? Horizontal or vertical? Black or color? Big or small? Smaller than her finger? Smaller than her fingernail?

"Most people want to take care of their tattoos so [upkeep] isn’t a problem," Rose said. "It’s when somebody wants something small and doesn’t understand [they] can’t have as many details. You can’t have both. Communication gap is a big problem."Don’t […]