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How To Decide On A Tattoo Design Or New Tattoo Artist

Tattoos are highly personal works of art, but they’re something that you will be judged for (justly or not) for the rest of your life. With Helpfull, considered feedback from a community of pollsters can aid you with ink-related queries or concerns.

February 5, 2023

How To Decide On A Tattoo Design Or New Tattoo Artist

Decision on a new tattoo design
“I am a canvas of my experiences, my story is etched in lines and shading, and you can read it on my arms, my legs, my shoulders, and my stomach.” - Kat Von D

In the past, having a tattoo was a mark on your character - something to be scorned and shamed by polite society. In the last hundred years or so, tattoos have experienced somewhat of a renaissance-like revival in popular culture; nowadays, something along the lines of 40% of the population (assuming you live in America) report as having at least one tattoo.

Even with tattoos being nearly as ubiquitous as prescription sunglasses, choosing what kind of tattoo to get can be an incredibly difficult decision to make.

A tattoo can be many things: a sentimental reminder, a display of passions, an aesthetic design - even a joke. One thing all tattoos share is their permanence; expensive laser-surgeries or cover-ups aside, tattoos are something that will stick with you for the rest of your life.

When considering the cost of a tattoo, the pain associated with the tattooing process, and the permanence of the act, it would be foolish not to spend time researching before you ink up.

One of the best ways to save yourself from experiencing post-tattoo regret is to get an outside opinion on your decisions. With Helpfull, considered feedback from a community of pollsters can aid you with ink-related queries or concerns.

Before we look at how Helpfull surveys provide invaluable feedback for major life decisions such as these, we’ll first take a look at:

Things To Consider Before You Get A Tattoo

When brainstorming ideas for your next ink project, it’s important to consider the why as well as the what: what are you looking to achieve with your new tattoo? Are you looking to get a tattoo of sentimental art piece, or something that will get a laugh out of you at every glance?

These pieces will stay with you for the rest of your life - so it's vital you pick an idea you really like.

If you’re looking to get a meaningful tattoo, here are some ideas to consider:

  • Choose a significant date
  • Get a Portrait tattoo (Note: Only work with highly skilled artists for this)
  • Choose a meaningful quote, or song lyrics you enjoy
  • Emblazon yourself with your favorite piece of pop culture

Aside from the actual content of the tattoo, there are several other factors to think about when gearing up for your next piece. Whenever you consider getting a new tattoo, its a good idea to think about:

  • The placement of the tattoo on your body
  • Consider how this might impact the pain you receive from the needlework, or how easily you’ll be able to hide the tattoo in the future if the need arises
  • Healing Time
  • Cost (Don’t forget to tip!)
  • How popular or common your tattoo idea is
  • How trendy the tattoo style is
  • How common are lower-back tattoos right now? Something to think about!

Utilizing Helpfull surveys can lay to rest any indecision one might have about a tattoo. With a variety of survey styles to choose from, there are multiple ways to approach getting feedback on your tattoo concerns.

Survey #1 - Finding The Right Tatoo with Text Comparison Surveys

Using a simple text-comparison survey is one way you can test your preliminary tattoo concepts with a wide audience of Helpfull pollsters. If you’ve got a general idea of what tattoo you’d like to get, but are unsure of the specific implementation of your designs, getting an outside opinion can be extremely beneficial to your decision-making.

We asked the Helpfull community for advice on what tattoo design I could get that would best memorialize my late grandfather. Each of the designs I proposed differed in the scope and scale of the art:

  • Fire Captain Helmet with his Number & Name tattooed on my outer bicep (He was a life-long firefighter)
  • "Let's Do It" in his handwriting across my wrist (Favorite quote/saying of his)
  • Portrait of his face on the back of my calf
  • His Birthday + Date of Passing & Name tattooed on my wrist (Most simple concept)

Unable to decide for ourselves, we asked 100 Helpfull pollsters to give their thoughts on our ideas.

Helpfull pollsters to choose a new tattoo design
Helpfull pollsters insights and comments on tattoo designs

In just 30 minutes, we have received one hundred new insights and comments pertaining to our tattoo designs. The Helpfull pollsters were eager to share with us how they felt each tattoo served to remember my grandfather in their own respective ways, which ones they felt were the most tasteful, and which ones would have the most longevity.

Plenty of Helpfull pollsters were sure to warn us of the potential pit-falls of going with a portrait design; others were eager to share why they felt tattooing his face on my body would be the best way to remember him. Decisively, the pollsters voted for the fire captain helmet as the strongest contender; with a diverse mix of opinions to draw from, the choice we make ultimately lies on us.

Survey #2 - Testing Art with Image-Comparison Surveys

For those of us with even a passing interest in tattoos, it’s very common to have a selection of tattoos and art saved for future references. The internet collectively loves ink - tattoos are right up there with cute animals and expensive brunch meals on the “Instagramability” scale. Saving tattoos sourced from the internet is a great way to draw inspiration for when you're finally ready to look at getting a tattoo later down the line.

Utilizing image-comparison surveys, you can easily work through and cull ideas from your favorite references. Helpfull pollsters can weigh in on your designs and concepts until you’re left with - not a great choice - the perfect choice for your next tattoo. To showcase this survey style, we asked the Helpfull community to choose from five tattoo designs incorporating our favorite animal, vulpes-vulpes:

“Foxes are my absolute favorite animal; ever since I was a teenager, I dreamed of getting one tattooed on me. I have the money for it now, but I can't decide on what style or design I should go with! I've chosen some of my favorite options, please vote on which one you think would look the best if you saw it on a stranger!”

Surveys for art with Image-comparison testing
Helpfull polling community comments for each tattoo design

After looking through the various designs we had sourced from the internet, the Helpfull polling community helped us to weigh the merits of each tattoo design. Ultimately, they chose the design they felt was the most artistic, realistic, and tasteful. While there was an audience for each tattoo style, many of the others we posted were far more controversial: the community rejected styles they found as too cartoony or too garish. Some pollsters were even concerned that the other tattoo ideas were too “feminine”, and wouldn’t befit a male body.

It’s important to remember that - even if you disagree with a pollster’s assessment of your concepts - these are real people. Tattoos are very easy for people to make judgements on; by getting public feedback before the inking process, you could potentially save yourself a lifetime’s worth of humiliation or regret. So take your time when reviewing the feedback you've been given; waiting until you've found the right tattoo design is a long-term commitment, but a wise one!

Survey #3 - Testing Artists with Website-Comparison Surveys

You’ve got the concept for your tattoo locked in your mind; you’ve even got a sketch for your design already drafted. You’re all ready to go for putting ink to skin - the only issue is, you can’t decide on a tattoo artist!

A hearty portfolio, professionalism, cost, and experience are all important factors to consider when choosing who will be permanently engraving your body. Tattoo artists come in all shapes and sizes; it’s very unlikely you’ll find a tattoo artist who has mastered every style of tattoo, so it’s important to find an artist that excels in the style you’re after.

We’ve assembled a short list of tattoo artists we would consider for our next tattoo; utilizing Helpfull’s website-comparison survey, we’re able to compare each of their portfolios in front of a Helpfull audience.

Surveys for artists with website-comparison testing
Helpfull community responses on artists with website testing

Between the three artists we selected, the Helpfull community was able to come up with a clear and decisive winner. With access to all three portfolios, the pollsters could compare and contrast the different styles and pieces each tattoo artist was capable of.

Utilizing the outside opinions given to us by these Helpfull pollsters, we can now choose our tattoo artist with confidence; we know that we’ll be getting a tattoo from an artist that people respect - art that can be admired and appreciated at a mere glance.

Transform Your Tattoo Designs with Helpfull Feedback

A tattoo is one of the purest and intimate forms of self-expression. Tattoos are highly personal works of art, but they’re something that you will be judged for (justly or not) for the rest of your life. Whether you’re looking for a sentimental reminder - or to turn your body into a walking art canvas - it’s vital to research your ideas. Before putting ink to skin and making a life-long commitment, getting outside feedback on your tattoo design is always the best practice.

An intuitive user-interface, coupled with the ability to gather hundreds of consumer responses in just minutes, are just a few of the features that make Helpfull the ultimate tool for any artist, designer, or marketer.

Show the world how you express yourself - sign up with Helpfull today, and get surveying within minutes!

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