P My love / hate relationship with tattooing

Torb

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Tattooing has been a big part of my life for the past 6 or so years. I suffer from depression and anxiety and focusing on tattooing has really helped me for the most. When I pull off a tattoo I'm happy with i get a huge high which can last days. But when I do one I'm not happy with I take it extremely hard. Sometimes I wonder if tattooing is for me. The good times are great but the bad times really get to me. I've found the more I tattoo the less I am satisfied with my work. Sorry for the rant.
 

MalligaMallan

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You're saying exactly what I'm thinking for myself! If we lived closer we could help each other to progress, would be so much easier to be able to meet irl to learn from each other.
 

Torb

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You're saying exactly what I'm thinking for myself! If we lived closer we could help each other to progress, would be so much easier to be able to meet irl to learn from each other.
That would be great. Il'l definitely catch up with you next time we are up in sthlm.
 

Torb

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The thing is lately I've got worse. When things aren't going the way I like during the tattoo I start sweating and my hand shakes. I start rushing through it and making things worse. The last one I did looked like shit. Bad lines. I'm doing another session on it so hopefully I can fix it. And no, I'm not posting a pic 😬
 

MalligaMallan

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The thing is lately I've got worse. When things aren't going the way I like during the tattoo I start sweating and my hand shakes. I start rushing through it and making things worse. The last one I did looked like shit. Bad lines. I'm doing another session on it so hopefully I can fix it. And no, I'm not posting a pic 😬
Still saying what I'm thinking for myself.
 

soulskript

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Sweet, my kind of gang! Lets start a club, get leather vests and matching tattoos 😁.

Jokes aside.
It sounds like you're putting to much pressure on tattooing to boost your mental wellbeing.
It's like everything you get excited about in life, it'll eventually fade n get less fun ... still get you somewhat there but not all the way, and if you have high expectations it makes it worse.

I don't have the answers, I got my own struggles no doubt.
But when i'm stuck in a downward spiral, i try to do other stuff that makes life in general more enjoyable, breaking the cycle... untill i start a new one 😉
(workout, eat well, sleep good, meditate blabla you know it all.)

Keep your head up, creating something out of nothing is always cool as fuck !
 

Torb

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Sweet, my kind of gang! Lets start a club, get leather vests and matching tattoos 😁.

Jokes aside.
It sounds like you're putting to much pressure on tattooing to boost your mental wellbeing.
It's like everything you get excited about in life, it'll eventually fade n get less fun ... still get you somewhat there but not all the way, and if you have high expectations it makes it worse.

I don't have the answers, I got my own struggles no doubt.
But when i'm stuck in a downward spiral, i try to do other stuff that makes life in general more enjoyable, breaking the cycle... untill i start a new one 😉
(workout, eat well, sleep good, meditate blabla you know it all.)

Keep your head up, creating something out of nothing is always cool as fuck !
Well said. Yeah I think I need some other hobby to take a break from tattooing. 🤔
 

TexasPT

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we've all had the sweats
we've all rushed just to get it done

artists are a neurotic bunch. The world loves what we do and we can't figure out why...but we can't seem to stop doing it despite our feelings of inadequacy.

I can't tell you how many times I've stared at my phone waiting for text that someone hates their new tattoo.
 

Joonited

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Tattooing has been a big part of my life for the past 6 or so years. I suffer from depression and anxiety and focusing on tattooing has really helped me for the most. When I pull off a tattoo I'm happy with i get a huge high which can last days. But when I do one I'm not happy with I take it extremely hard. Sometimes I wonder if tattooing is for me. The good times are great but the bad times really get to me. I've found the more I tattoo the less I am satisfied with my work. Sorry for the rant.
You're not alone... Feeling the same way and having the same problems with my music & tattooing 😊 I think the life of every artist is always full of struggle and self doubt. But that also is the energy that keeps us moving and growing. I think We would never improve if we were happy with everything from the start on 😄 sometimes I'm so mad and disappointed about myself for days... But then I work harder and wanna proof myself that I can do better.
 

Torb

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You're not alone... Feeling the same way and having the same problems with my music & tattooing 😊 I think the life of every artist is always full of struggle and self doubt. But that also is the energy that keeps us moving and growing. I think We would never improve if we were happy with everything from the start on 😄 sometimes I'm so mad and disappointed about myself for days... But then I work harder and wanna proof myself that I can do better.
I totally agree. Pleased to know I'm not alone.😊
 

Raskal 1220

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Torb I can definitely relate to you 💯 I started tattooing in prison in 2005. Picked it back up for little bit after I got out, just not serious about it though. Picked it back up again when I went back for a second vacation there and it’s the way I supported myself in there with all the little extra things. Got out and picked up a few good used coils and really invested some money into it. I did a couple tattoos on Reelskin, myself, and a friend and realized how much different it is with “real equipment” compared to homemade penitentiary things and I lost all confidence in myself for about 6-8 months. Then this COVID crap killed the oilfield here in TX and I thought it’s time to really 💯 invest myself into this cause this is what I really want to do with my life I love anything that has to do with tattoos......Guess what I’m saying is don’t give up, lose sight, or beat yourself up over mistakes. Take the mistake and learn from it. I hated posting pics on here but it’s the only way anyone can REALLY HELP you, seeing your work. I wish there was a good clean shop close enough to me I could go just sit around and watch. Keep your chin and moving forward. It’ll get better.
 

DKJ

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Hey Torb,
there may be a lot of things pushing you to depression right now; end of the summer, Covid global anxiety, less good tattoos, and maybe some private stuff which can add up a little or too much.

I'm a very positive and happy guy, and i've been living all my adult life with a wonderful bipolar wife. I know deep depression from the outside and i would totally go for Soulskript's ideas: try to get more versatile activities.
Tattoos are not the only thing you can and should do. You're making tattoos, they shouldn't make you unhappy.
In fact, everything you do feeds another thing that you'll do. Be it good for your body, your minds, your nerves, your stomach, your art skills... It's not wasted time.
In regards to that, focusing too much and only on a few type of activities can lead you to boredom, low esteem due to your routine life, and the doubt circle comes up with not much to lighten up these repetitive activities.
You know, when kids learns to read, they're super happy, super motivated, amazed, it's a new world openning. Then they know how to do it and get bored.

You don't have to be successful, or working hard, or getting better all the time.
Finding new music for your ears is not challenging and can give you inspiration.
Painting a door, a room, some window's frames, can be an easy, quick and rewarding change, with no artistic game in it (except the color choice maybe).
Taking an hour to see which car / house / horse you would buy if you had unlimited money can also be fun, interesting, and will give you some sense of what you like and dislike.
Diving in the sea or a swimming pool, without any challenge, but just to feel as if you were in the womb, can be a very refreshing thing too.
Grabbing the birthday dates of all the people you love (by calling them) and write them down on a calendar can also make you feel how good of a person you are.
Cooking some new stuff.
Getting a feet massage.

It's me, and just me, but i always have 20 projects in my mind at the same time. I write down ideas, i usually get things 80% done and leave them behind... Can never finish anything before i get bored or unhappy with the upcoming or final result.
But... I did it, and that's what counts for me. I tried. I know how it feels. It's my personal thing and i don't give a damn what people think of me and my achievements in life, because i did and lived 80% of some real crazy and unusual things. I don't brag about it, it's private and only a few peeps would understand the thrills i got out of them. But now it's printed in my memory, it gives me more and more ideas for projects i'll never finish.

I hope you'll find more and more ways to feel better, depression and anxiety are real pains. Meds can help too, but don't doubt that things change and tomorrow can be brighter than you ever thought. Seek for every person who love you, they're the best for you!


Peace to you and your mind,

Cheers, love, fun, and anything good sent your way,

DKJ