I'm always on the lookout for opportunities to prove to the world that I am a rebel. E D G Y, as some squares would say. I therefore shot an email to Liquid Amber Tattoo asking them if I could take a couple of photos of their artists. And they said yes!
Shooting in tattoo parlors is hard; a variety of amazing artists are at work on the premises, and the last thing you want to do is get in their way (after all, they know how to handle sharp objects). Respecting the artist's space and making sure you're not making their job harder is a top priority. This actually holds for any workshop photography. If the performer or artist has to stop what they are doing because of you, you're doing it wrong.
I used warm lighting and a very shallow DOF (more about this in a later post, if interest is there) to emphasize the preciseness of the work being done, and the welcoming nature of the studio. The studio, incidentally, featured neither liquid amber nor solid amber. Must've been the gaseous kind.
Make sure you capture the prep time; everything after that is a little repetitive, and would be better served by a time-lapse (and even then). As such, I photographed different artists at different phases of the process. A huge thanks to the whole staff of Liquid Amber Tattoo for allowing me in their sanctum, especially Genevieve, that bugged all the clients in order to get their consent (and saving me a couple of pricey lawsuits)!