Whether you have a full sleeve or a tiny detail, those of us with ink know that every mark on your skin has a deep significant meaning to you. Even those who have ‘your name’ tattooed on their bum from a night out in Tenerife, will have a memory attached to it. Ink is more than just a painting on your body. It is your brand and your life played out in art. Not just a sign that you have braved the needle, but often a visual reminder of your inner strength.
So, it makes sense that you are going to want to show it off every now and then, however mastering the art of photographing your tattoos can be hard. But once you have picked up a few techniques you may even find yourself wanting to shoot others. We recommend photography classes for that but get started with our quick guide.
Set the mood
This is not your average selfie. Tattoos really need to be seen in real life to understand the depth and true colour they possess. You can end up taking a photo at the wrong angle or making a colour look off if you don’t have the right lighting. Think about where you want to capture your photo. Black and white with a textured background may be a good option if you want a really gritty edgy look.
One of the best ways to catch colour is by getting lots of natural light to it. You can also break harsh designs by getting out into nature and using the environment to balance out the colour. We’ve seen some great images taken in urban areas and witnessed colours popping when backed with the lush green of the countryside. Your tattoo is art, so put lots of thought into the surroundings!
The moody glimpse
Sometimes bright light can have the opposite effect on your tattoo, so if you want to make a real statement consider playing with light and shade. Whilst capturing a photo at night can be too much for your mobile camera, it is possible to use the moonlight to highlight small areas of your body, then take to lightbox and set about some heavy editing. This can work really well with tribal pieces.
Tattoo? Oh that tattoo
Maybe you prefer a subtle approach. Snapping a chilled out image of you looking cool and casual with your tattoo almost appearing as a second thought, like you hadn’t even remembered it was there. We’ve seen some awesome subtle images of ink that inspired us to get back in the chair. Play around and have fun with it by setting your camera on a timer or grabbing a mate to take photos of you in your natural environment.
However you choose to show it off, be proud. A lot of people aren’t brave enough to make the leap but dream about having their story told through tattoos. Be proud, be loud and be unique!