What Does Tattoo Artist Training Involve?

tattoo artist training

Looking to become a tattoo artist? For many, it’s an incredibly fulfilling career.

You get to be yourself every day and you get to spend your time making the type of art you enjoy. On top of that, demand is constant; in good times and in bad. And if you constantly develop your skills and learn how to impress clients, you can make a good living.

Want to know how to become a tattoo artist? Wondering what tattoo artist training entails?

It’s far more in-depth than simply learning how to draw better, or poke someone with a needle. But it’s also far more enjoyable than any school you’ve probably attended in the past. 

If you’re wondering how to get started with tattoo artist classes so you can start earning income as an artist then keep reading for everything you need to know.

Importance of Tattoo Artist Training

Most art forms are unregulated; you can do whatever you want. But since tattoos involve human skin, and can be dangerous if done improperly, tattoo artists need to be licensed.

In the past, people either had to learn by themselves or find an apprenticeship under an experienced artist. Both of these approaches can take far too long, and often don’t provide enough foundational knowledge and hands-on practice.

But with our 11-week tattoo artist school, you will become a confident, skilled artist ready to take on new clients in just a few months.

What Does Tattoo Artist School Entail?

When you pursue your career as a tattoo artist at Florida Tattoo Academy, you can be licensed in as little as 11 weeks. Each week, tattoo artist classes focus on a different topic. Here’s what you can expect to learn.

History of Tattooing

Tattoos have been around for a long time. Cultures around the globe have used tattoos throughout history.

In order to fully appreciate the art form, it’s important to understand the history of the practice. Along with ancient practices, you’ll learn about key developments and pioneers in the modern tattoo industry.

Art of Tattoo

There are many different styles of tattoo that represent different time periods, cultures, and values. You’ll be exposed to a variety of styles as you begin to practice your own style on paper. You’ll also practice placement and orientation using markers on human skin.

Tattoo Best Practices

To ensure the safety of clients and protect your future as a tattoo artist, you need to be confident when it comes to best practices. You’ll become Bloodborne Pathogen certified.

Take a deep dive into cross-contamination and how to prevent it. And you’ll become aware of sanitation and safety practices when it comes to tattoo shops.

Skin Biology

One of the most important things to learn about and become very comfortable with is skin biology. Because this is your medium when it comes to making art, you need to have a clear understanding.

You’ll learn how to assess skin health and how to reduce trauma. You’ll be aware of clean healing best practices and how to speak with clients about skin issues.

Technology and Maintenance 

If human skin is your canvas, the tattoo machine is your pencil. You’ll learn all about modern tattoo machines, how to use them, and how to break them down and reassemble them.

Learning proper maintenance and cleaning of coil machines is critical. 

Tattoo Practice

And of course, you get to practice tattoo techniques. You’ll start out by using machines on grapefruit skin and then synthetic skins. Learn how to outline and shade tattoos. You’ll get an understanding of how deep to penetrate the skin and how to properly distribute ink.

Once you get accustomed to synthetic skin, you’ll eventually move on to pigskin, since it’s similar to human skin. This is the last medium before getting licensed and getting to tattoo actual people.

You’ll get familiar with tattooing your own art and how to create your ideal workspace. You will also start getting a grip of time management when it comes to preparing for a tattoo and bringing it to life.

The Ins and Outs of Tattoo Shops

There’s a good chance you’ve already spent time in tattoo shops as a customer. But now you’ll get to dig in and learn what happens behind the scenes.

Discover how to create an ideal, customer-centric environment. Learn basic responsibilities when it comes to shop management and upkeep. You’ll start getting familiar with tattoo pricing and quoting. And you’ll get familiar with documents necessary for clients and artist protection.

How to Work With Clients

Other than actually making art, your job as a tattoo artist revolves around speaking with and working with clients. You’ll learn how to interact with clients, and how to interview them to ensure you can provide what they are looking for.

Students will develop crucial communication skills, learning to listen, as well as helping clients feel comfortable and confident in the shop.

Artistry Ethics

As you get closer to receiving your license, you’ll dig deeper into tattoo and artist ethics to ensure you are confident moving into your new career. Once you’ve developed competence tattooing on pig skin, you’ll also get to start practicing with friends and family.

This is a pivotal time for emerging artists as these tattoos will become your initial portfolio.

Client Care

Once you begin tattooing on people, you’ll also start learning aftercare and touch-up techniques. This is important for helping clients leave your shop feeling confident that they can properly take care of their new tattoo.


As you are approaching graduation, you’ll also start learning about effective self-marketing techniques to ensure you start attracting new clients and earning income as soon as possible. There’s a lot that goes into landing a job at a tattoo job and learning to build up a clientele of your own.

You’ll also refine your customer service skills which are critical for providing a positive experience and earning word-of-mouth referrals. 

But attending our program gives you a headstart when it comes to finding work as a tattoo artist. We have partnerships with tattoo studios across Florida, as well as a few other states, that are looking to hire our graduated students.

That means less time searching for work and more time earning income as an artist.

How to Get Started

The best way to get started as a tattoo artist is by attending a tattoo artist training program focused on getting you equipped and licensed. A tattoo artist apprenticeship is an outdated model that is hard to find and takes much longer, often two years or more.

With our school, you can be licensed and earning an income in as little as 11 months. If you are looking to begin a new career as an artist, you can request information on upcoming start dates, school requirements, and tattoo artist training costs here.