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Tattoo Artists & the Pandemic: A Look at Reopening and How Tattooing Has Been Affected by COVID-19



When the global pandemic hit and the world was forced to go into lockdown, tattoo artists, like so many others, were completely unable to work. Artists who own their own shops struggled to get any sort of assistance via PPP loans as bills and rent piled up, while tattooers who worked as independent contractors had trouble obtaining unemployment benefits and figuring out what they could do to bring in some cash. Many had trouble finding any inspiration to create while their lives were turned upside down.

Now there is some light at the end of the tunnel as tattoo shops are beginning to open up around the world. But don’t think that this means a return to normal—today’s tattoo industry will look very different than the one we left behind a mere three months ago. There will be new safety regulations and protocols that will take some getting used to, for both artists and clients. We spoke with 10 artists from all over the country (and Australia!) to hear about how they’ve been affected by the lockdown, what steps they are taking to ensure everyone’s safety when they open up, what clients can do to help things run smoothly and what they missed most about tattooing.

Note: All of these interviews were recorded over Zoom calls, so the picture quality and sound is a little below our usual standards. Please bear with us.

#Inked #TattooArtists #Covid19 #Coronavirus #Pandemic #TattooShops #Tattoos #SmallBusiness #Reopening #Reopensmallbusiness #Tattooers

Artists featured in this video:
BJ Betts:
Joe Capobianco:
Nick Colella:
Kelly Doty:
Deanna James:
Pony Lawson:
Danny Lepore:
Chris Showstoppr:
DJ Tambe:
Luke Wessman:

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23 Comments

  1. I love Kelly; no matter how green her hair is and how pale she 'trys' to appear, she looks amazing.
    Such an expressive face and gorgeous brown eyes.
    I'm debating whether or not to get my first tattoo, just to meet her–She's only an hour away from where I live.

  2. I’m glad I live in Atlantic Canada where we haven’t had any active cases in over two weeks so tattoo studios (in my province at least) are now open with only you and the artist, with all the artists staggered and everyone wearing masks. I’m glad we were closed for awhile tho since every business that wasn’t essential is closed we were able to contain the virus and now get to slowly open up and see how it goes