What did you do before you went into your business?
Before going into the tattoo industry, I worked within retail for a short time and then moved into hospitality both nationally and internationally. Within hospitality I worked predominantly in catering and customer service.
What made you choose to create your own business?
The main driving force behind creating my own business was the need to be independent and true to myself. The freedom of having something I could call my own and developing that to support myself in the future negating the need to be reliant on others was also a huge factor for me. Finally realising my talent as an artist and believing in myself was enough to take the leap.
How long have you been running your business for?
I have been running my tattoo business for almost 12 months now. I am currently in the process of expanding to new premises, with the hope of giving someone else the opportunity to get into the industry as I understand how impossible it may seem.
Have you come across any sexist issues in owning your business?
The tattoo industry can appear to be a male orientated profession, although in the last few years more and more female artists have made a name for themselves. This has helped the industry in progressing away from the stereotypical “male orientated” feel. I have had lots of men approach me due to them feeling intimidated about visiting traditional tattoo studios and that they would feel more comfortable being tattooed by a female in a less “macho” environment.
What are your 3 pros and 3 cons of owning your own business?
Pro 1. Being able to do what I love every day.
Pro 2. Meeting new people from all walks of life.
Pro 3. Being challenged artistically and seeing customers satisfaction in the art that I create for them.
Con 1. The financial burden that comes with the sole responsibility of running your own business.
Con 2. Customers that don’t understand why they should pay you accordingly for the talent that you possess.
Con 3. Customers that are unrealistic in their expectations.
What are the main things that drive your passion in relation to your business?
Being challenged artistically drives me to become a better and better artist every day in terms of creating pieces of art that aren’t always my style. Trying new styles and developing new techniques. Seeing how happy my customers are with the art I create especially when they are sentimental pieces.
What’s your proudest moment in your business ownership so far?
Probably my proudest moment was having the honour of creating a tattoo in memorial of a loved one! Being the person that someone has chosen to create art that will be with them forever makes me very proud.
Who inspires you in relation to your work?
My inspiration comes from many different artists within the industry. Especially female artists such as Jenna Kerr and Miryam Lumpini who are both exceptional artists in their field. I aspire one day to achieve the level of expertise they possess. On an artistic level outside of the industry Frida Kahlo has always inspired me to be what I want to be and to not care how others view me.
What advice would you give anyone thinking of starting their own business?
DO IT! If you don’t take the plunge you will never know what you’re capable of and always wonder “what if?”.
Is there anything else you would like to talk about/add?
Anyone and everyone is capable of realising their dreams, they just have to believe in themselves. In a world that is dominated by power and masculinity, female artists and business owners should be supporting and empowering each other to succeed.
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