My journey into Tattooing (Progress through my first seven months on Fake Skin)


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John.D.Escu

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@john.d.escu
Hey everyone,

I decided to teach myself how to Tattoo, starting January of 2021. So far, i have only worked on fake skin.
I am interested in realism and portraits, but as of now i do not feel ready to begin practicing on that.
Here is some of my work, done in between May and August of 2021.
Please note that some of the stencils are taken from free websites, and am strictly using them for practice and self development.
Any credit is given to the rightful creators.
Criticism will be appreciated, as I do know there are a lot that I need to improve on.
I am using a Hawking Rotary CNC-M-Q5-1, Viking Ink, just black, no blending, or graywash or black diluted with water.
The needles i used are mostly 1205RL, 1207RS and 1211RM, and i am will start to use bugpin 03RL in the upcoming future, for better detail work.

P.S. - I finally managed to do all the Slipknot members and their masks. I believe it is a good exercise to get me started into the portrait/realism side of things.
If you guys are interested in more photos of my work, let me know.
Also, you can check out my Instagram Account (Link is on my account) for some of my drawings.

Thank you for your time!
John D. Escu


May:



June:


July:


August:

 

Nathan Molenaar

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Nathan
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https://www.instagram.com/natemilz_
Hey everyone,

I decided to teach myself how to Tattoo, starting January of 2021. So far, i have only worked on fake skin.
I am interested in realism and portraits, but as of now i do not feel ready to begin practicing on that.
Here is some of my work, done in between May and August of 2021.
Please note that some of the stencils are taken from free websites, and am strictly using them for practice and self development.
Any credit is given to the rightful creators.
Criticism will be appreciated, as I do know there are a lot that I need to improve on.
I am using a Hawking Rotary CNC-M-Q5-1, Viking Ink, just black, no blending, or graywash or black diluted with water.
The needles i used are mostly 1205RL, 1207RS and 1211RM, and i am will start to use bugpin 03RL in the upcoming future, for better detail work.

P.S. - I finally managed to do all the Slipknot members and their masks. I believe it is a good exercise to get me started into the portrait/realism side of things.
If you guys are interested in more photos of my work, let me know.
Also, you can check out my Instagram Account (Link is on my account) for some of my drawings.

Thank you for your time!
John D. Escu


May:



June:


July:


August:

Hey John.D.Escu I made a quick video to give you some pointers on black and grey.

in it I talk about:
Why 10 gauge needles make b&g easier
How to mix your own grey wash
Suggestions for what needles to use
how to use backgrounds to make your tattoos pop

hope this helps bro

 

dirtnail

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That's some impressive work there. The dragon is sick!
Expext skin to be a whole different beast from fake skin. But with this as a basis I bet you'll do great.
 

John.D.Escu

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Its hard to believe youve just started. The bird, to me, is especially striking with that bold contrast. You say you have not diluted the black for those shades?
Hello,

Thank your for your comment.
I am only using black Viking Ink. No dilution.
 

John.D.Escu

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@john.d.escu
Hey John.D.Escu I made a quick video to give you some pointers on black and grey.

in it I talk about:
Why 10 gauge needles make b&g easier
How to mix your own grey wash
Suggestions for what needles to use
how to use backgrounds to make your tattoos pop

hope this helps bro

Hello!
First of all, thank you for the video, i really appreciate it!
I have just gotten some 03 Bugpin needles now and will be testing them soon.
I have never diluted my black color, as I was not certain on how to do this, the right way. But I feel that simply shading with machine/needle control is not the right thing to do, and could develop a bad habit for me.
I tend to push really hard into the skin, when reaching for the strong black color. If i will ever tattoo on human skin, I believe i could damage the skin that way.
But I will try to dilute my black colour and let you know how it goes.

Thang you again, for all your help!
 

John.D.Escu

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@john.d.escu
That's some impressive work there. The dragon is sick!
Expext skin to be a whole different beast from fake skin. But with this as a basis I bet you'll do great.
Hello!
I have heard that the real skin would be "like butter" compared to this fake one.
I am thinking of getting Reelskin and start tattooing on that one. Have you ever tried it?
 

Nathan Molenaar

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https://www.instagram.com/natemilz_
Hello!
I have heard that the real skin would be "like butter" compared to this fake one.
I am thinking of getting Reelskin and start tattooing on that one. Have you ever tried it?
Highly recommend real skin. Its the closest you can get to the real thing imo. Without all the haseels that come with pig skin.
 

MalligaMallan

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Reelskin is good for practice. Get yourself some cold pressed coconut oil (at any grocery store) instead of vaseline. It's great for Reelskin due to its low melting point and doesn't clog the needles.
 

MalligaMallan

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You say you have not diluted the black for those shades?

I never dilute my ink when shading either. Not on human skin and not on Reelskin. I don't like the way washes (diluted ink) heals. It gets patchy, even when top top pros do it. I've seen healed tattoos like that irl and just don't like it.

When using solid black you get a more "grainy" result (which I happen to like) but you can better foresee what the healed result will be.

This is my belief, probably a lot out there who don't agree.
 
Last edited:

Nathan Molenaar

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I never dilute my ink when shading either. Not on human skin and not on Reelskin. I don't like the way washes (diluted ink) heals. It gets patchy, even when top top pros do it. I've seen tattoos like that irl and just don't like it.

When using solid black you get a more "grainy" result (which I happen to like) but you can better foresee what the healed result will be.

This is my belief, probably a lot out there who don't agree.
everyone tattoos differently, its a good thing. you can still get ultra-smooth gradients using just black. Kelly Violet is a great example
 

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John.D.Escu

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Yeah if you just rub vaseline over the ink it takes it straight of the skin.
What about the stencil? Will it wipe off easy, or will i have to clean it with the same clor technique as on the non reelskin skins?
 

Nathan Molenaar

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What about the stencil? Will it wipe off easy, or will i have to clean it with the same clor technique as on the non reelskin skins?
depends on how long you let it dry. if you leave the stencil on overnight...

it's not coming off no matter what you do.

If you leave it on for an hour or two it will naturally come off by the end of the tattoo.

if you are doing a full-color tattoo this is not an issue as the needles brushing over the stencil as well as packing ink into the skin will cover the entire stencil. however, if you do a realistic b&g portrait where there are heaps of skin breaks then yeah the stencil showing through will be an issue.

long story short don't leave the stencil on to long before you start the tattoo. move from the bottom right-hand corner up to the top left (if you are right-handed) so you don't rub off the stencil as you go and you'll be golden.
 

John.D.Escu

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depends on how long you let it dry. if you leave the stencil on overnight...

it's not coming off no matter what you do.

If you leave it on for an hour or two it will naturally come off by the end of the tattoo.

if you are doing a full-color tattoo this is not an issue as the needles brushing over the stencil as well as packing ink into the skin will cover the entire stencil. however, if you do a realistic b&g portrait where there are heaps of skin breaks then yeah the stencil showing through will be an issue.

long story short don't leave the stencil on to long before you start the tattoo. move from the bottom right-hand corner up to the top left (if you are right-handed) so you don't rub off the stencil as you go and you'll be golden.
I am really excited about the Reelskin!
Just have to finish working on the skins i have now, and then i will switch it up.
Thank you for all the info! 😁
 

John.D.Escu

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Hello guys,

I managed to finish a big piece today. Took me almost 6 hours.
Would you guys recommend to take a brake in between and finish big pieces like these, in 2 days? I really wanted to get it done, but in the last hours i felt really tired and i am not that happy with how the shading ended up.
I only used black, without any blending.
Needles used: 1205 RL, 1207 RS and 1211RM

P.S. / My 03 Bugpins arrived and will give them a try tomorrow, on a smaller piece.


 

MalligaMallan

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I'd say it depends on what you're practicing. If you want to practice techniques and/or a good look of the motif on stencil, I would take a break and continue the next day. If you want to practice time, or want to see how much time it would take on a human, I would do it the way you would on a human.

I agree about the shading. Other than that it looks good. Lining looks good as far as I can see. Photo is not that sharp.
 
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playboysatx
Hello!
I have heard that the real skin would be "like butter" compared to this fake one.
I am thinking of getting Reelskin and start tattooing on that one. Have you ever tried it?
Reelskin is in my opinion great quality for practice skins go. I have tried a few others and too much trouble low quality outcomes. Obviously it's not real real skin but it's a great teaching practice tool.
 

John.D.Escu

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John.D.Escu

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@john.d.escu
So i finally tried on a Bugpin 03.
I find it interesting in a positive way, on how faster i can move my needle hand with this one.
I do need to work more with it, but so far i am liking it alot.
I do have one question, i would rather not draw out the conture befire filling a tattoo (Like the one in the picture attached here) but using a shader or a RM will not give me that accuracy.
Correct me if im wrong, but would i have more controll and sharpness with a Magnum? It does have those sharper edges.

Thanks in advance!

 

MalligaMallan

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Looks good, but I think you should decide what look you want for your shading. Now it looks unintentionally scratchy.

You could keep that look but make it more obvious, more sketchy style. Or you can choose a smoother look, but in that case you need to work on it. It's notable especially on the bottom shading of the neck.
 

John.D.Escu

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Looks good, but I think you should decide what look you want for your shading. Now it looks unintentionally scratchy.

You could keep that look but make it more obvious, more sketchy style. Or you can choose a smoother look, but in that case you need to work on it. It's notable especially on the bottom shading of the neck.
Thank you for the feedback!
At this point i am just trying diferent hand stroking techniques and see what fits better and what i like more.
 

John.D.Escu

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I`ve got myself a new wireless battery for my tattooing machine and I have a totally different feeling. But in a good way, so I ended up doing the tattoo below.
The stencil was wiping off really fast, so I decided to line it and then just freehand the shading.


 

Big Pete

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Your tattooing on fake skin is really good, the only problem with fake skin is that it is flat and makes it easier to tattoo, I would recommend placing the fake skin over a melon or a curved surface. This will give you a feel of how it is to tattoo on something which isn't flat because no human body has many flat areas.
 

John.D.Escu

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Your tattooing on fake skin is really good, the only problem with fake skin is that it is flat and makes it easier to tattoo, I would recommend placing the fake skin over a melon or a curved surface. This will give you a feel of how it is to tattoo on something which isn't flat because no human body has many flat areas.
Thanks!

I am thinking of wrapping the fake skin on some round 2L water bottles, to try and simulate a hand or leg.
 

John.D.Escu

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Hello,

For this one, I wrapped the Reel Skin on the 1.5L plastic bottle. I find that amazing for practice. You can see how it went, on the YouTube video.
Criticism will be appreciated!



 

John.D.Escu

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Hello,

I Decided to try and do the all so original Tiger Head.
Below are photos with the Stencil, finished piece, and video.
I used a 1205RL and 1011M1 Needles, 1 drop, 3 drops, a cup of full black, and full white at the end.





 

John.D.Escu

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Hello.

Here is my Rose attempt, with a 5RL und 1213RM.

Original Design:


Stencil:


Finished Tattoo:


Hyperlapse Video:
 

John.D.Escu

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Hello,

A new project I did, using the Glitch function in Procreate.

Needles: 07 Magnum and 05 Liner.


Design:



Stencil:



Finished Tattoo:



Hyperlapse Video:
 

John.D.Escu

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Hey all,

I did a new portrait, of Fred Durst from Limp Bizkit.
This was done with a 1205Rl and a 1213RM.
I had some problems with the stencil being too thick and I couldn't do the border right in between accents.


Stencil:


Stencil on the ReelSkin:


Finished:


Hyperlapse Video:
 

John.D.Escu

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Hello guys!

Time for the anniversary tattoo. I now have been tattooing on practice skin for exactly one year.
The portrait is of one of the funniest man ever, check it out below!
Also, i have also posted a photo of the first tattoo I ever did on practice skin.

Stencil:


Finished Tattoo:


Youtube Hyperlapse Video:

Bonus Tattoo (First one I ever did, on 15.01.2021):
 

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