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Tattoo Artist Slams At-Home “Scratchers” Who Call Apprenticeships “Gatekeeping”

Sounds smart to learn and practice a craft, no?

Being a tattoo artist takes skill, passion, and practice. It's one of those professions that not just anyone should try and do (without any training). 

This tattoo artist set the record straight for those who call apprenticeships "gatekeeping."


"You WISH you had my spot," wrote tattoo artist @Keeksandkooks, referring to those scratchers, or people who tattoo without any training often out of their houses.

What's so bad about people wanting to perfect their skill and talent before they test out a client, or as @keeksandkooks says "ruin people's skin."

Keeks said, "Maybe if you had any respect for this craft, someone would be willing to teach you, but you don't even want to learn." Sis is preaching!

We're not saying that people who choose not to take advantage of apprenticeships don't respect the craft, but it kind of is a slap in the face to tattoo artists who take the time to study, learn, and train for the profession. 

Keeks threw the ultimate blow when she said, "talk to me when I'm not covering your tattoos." Unfortunately, that is a risk that people take when they go to an artist who isn't trained.

Commenters also had a lot to say about this idea of apprenticeships gatekeeping. 

"THANK YOU!! I have been trying so hard to find an apprenticeship, it makes me so sad and frustrated when I see people give up to do it themselves," one person said. 

Another person came to the defense of "scratchers" but also understood Keeks message. They said, "I started at home 9 years ago. Not saying it's the right way, but for some it's the only way. Now I own my own thriving shop. 🥰"

The decision is up to you about who you decide to let tattoo your body, but trusting someone with the training and experience from an apprenticeship makes sense.