WHAT MAKES A PERSON A GOOD CLIENT OR A BAD CLIENT?
In the world of business, there are good customers and there are bad customers. This is no different in the tattoo industry. You gotta take the bad with the good, unfortunately, but you can avoid being one of the bad ones. No tattoo artist wants to think to themself, “Oh no, not this guy again.” And hopefully, no client wants that thought of them, either.
WHAT MAKES A PERSON A “BAD CLIENT” IN THE TATTOO WORLD?
There are many factors that can lead to a person being on this list of dreaded customers. Pretty much all of which can easily be avoided or corrected with just a little conscientious thought and consideration. Being self-aware helps, as well.
One major factor to be considered a “bad client” is being flaky regarding your appointments. If you are constantly trying to reschedule or even cancel your appointments, this is right up top. Appointments are made for the reason of the artist and the studio aren’t making any money as it’s difficult to fill those spots at the last minute.
If your artist is planning on you being there on a certain date/time, they’ve already planned out their drawing schedule and were counting on you being there for the planned time. It’s one of the reasons cancelling or moving your appointment last minute is an ADF forfeiture. The solution is to just manage your time better and show up to your appointments.
THE CONTROL FREAK
Another factor separating the good vs the bad is control. If a client needs 100% control and say over the tattoo design, you are tying the creative hands of your artist, and maybe your idea just won’t work as envisioned. Trust is essential when getting a tattoo, which means is solely based on selecting the right artist. There needs to be some degree of artistic freedom for your artist to do their best work.
There are few exceptions to this, such as a memorial piece that you need an exact copy of handwriting, or you want an exact copy of a kids drawing. Things like that. Otherwise, loosen up, trust your artist, and don’t be a control freak.
SMOKEY THE BEAR
Someone that needs to take an excessive amount of smoke breaks, for example, every 15 minutes, that person is a pain in the ass. Taking breaks is fine, and expected, but if your artist has to constantly stop so you can run out side for a puff, you are not only delaying their time, but you are interrupting their flow/creative process. Put the shoe on the other foot, imagine how you’d feel if your artist was taking a smoke break every 15 minutes? Sadly, that scenario is very real in some other shops. Hold your smoke breaks to no more than once every two hours, but ideally longer.
If you are in for a full day session, you will get an hour lunch and your artist will be willing to take a couple of breaks outside that. They need a quick break now and then too, which is normal. Just don’t go overboard. Having to stop and restart, waiting 5 min in between, adds up, and you will lose time with your artist that you paid for.
MOVERS AND SHAKERS
Body control. Yes, lack of body control can make a person a bad client. If you are unable to keep still or you’re constantly fidgeting, you are not only going to annoy your artist, but you will probably mess up your own tattoo. If you are experience extra discomfort during part of your tattoo, it’s ok to let your artist know, but do your best to try and muscle through it. If you jump or pull away, that nice little line your artist was just doing will now be a crooked, jagged mess.
Having people come in to be with you during your tattoo is fine, as long as they are over the age of 18. When this becomes a problem is if you bring too many, or have too many show up during the tattoo process and need to be escorted back to the artists room. The more people you have with you, the louder and more distracting it will get.
Your artist needs to also be comfortable and focused. If you are coming in and getting a tattoo, and you bring the whole bridal shower with you, that’s a problem. It will be crowded, loud and distracting. Just bring one, or two maximum. Getting a tattoo doesn’t have to be a family get-together.
THE OPERA SINGER
Excessive vocalization can also be a bad thing. Yeah, tattoos can hurt and you should expect that. However, if you are literally wailing during your tattoo, you need to rethink if you can handle it. Wailing, yelling out or whatever can distract not just your artist, but every artist in the building. It may also make other clients concerned. Instead of crying out, just suck it up and deal with it. There is literally no reason for loud vocalizations during a tattoo. The vast majority of spots on the body are not very painful at all.
Threatening your artist and demanding a discount or you will have another person finish up a tattoo that has already been started in order to get it done cheaper, makes you a very bad client. First off, it’s very insulting to the artist to essentially steal the work they created for you. Second, what makes you think another artist can see the vision behind the tattoo and can successfully finish it as intended? It’s like taking a half finished Rembrandt and asking your middle school art teacher to finish it up.
THE TOWEL THROWER
Consistently “tapping out” from your appointments can get a little old. If you are scheduled for a 6 hour, and you tap out after 4, and this happens on all your appointments, three things will happen. You will annoy your artist, you will fall behind on your artists plan for your tattoo, and you will still be obligated to pay for the full appointment regardless how much time you had remaining for that day.
If you are unsure if you can commit to long sessions like that, discuss it beforehand with your artist and book out appointments that are more suited for your needs. It’s better to plan it this way so that your artist isn’t caught off guard with your needing to leave. If you can only do 2 hour sessions, that’s fine. However, if you are planning a large piece that the artist needs to tattoo the initial layout, you may need to be there longer for that first session. Just discuss it with your artist.
THE SHY WHINER
Coy complainers. These are the folks that will say they like the tattoo design their artist prepared for them, say how much they love their tattoo after it’s done and then go and leave a bad review because in reality, they weren’t 100% happy with the tattoo and were just too coy to say something before their artist started the tattoo. This is nearly always based on size or placement.
If you wanted it smaller or bigger, SAY SOMETHING TO YOUR ARTIST BEFORE YOU START. It’s really not that hard, and it’s not a big deal to the artist at all. Resizing a design is probably the easiest change they can make. The same goes for tattoo placement. If you aren’t thrilled how it’s placed, say so. The artist can change it. Just be aware of logic, if you have them changing size and placement a bunch of times, you will eat into your tattoo time.
HOPEFULLY THAT LITTLE BIT OF INFO CAN HELP YOU UNDERSTAND ON HOW TO AVOID BEING ONE OF THE BAD CLIENTS, AND WHY.
ARE YOU READY FOR YOUR NEXT TATTOO?
If you’re ready to get your next tattoo done, schedule an appointment with an award-winning tattoo parlor. Here at Lucky Bamboo Tattoo, we have some of the best and most experienced tattoo artists in Utah and the Salt Lake City area. We can tattoo any style you’d like, and our artists can even design your next piece as well.
Come see why we have been voted “The Best Tattoo Studio In Utah” for several years in a row.
Lucky Bamboo Tattoo understands that tattoo collectors searching for the best tattoo shop in Utah comes with a big responsibility and we here at LBT are ready to fulfill your tattoo needs.