What Are Ignorant Tattoos?

A new trend in tattooing is the “ignorant style,” which has learned to embrace breaking the rules, misspelling words, and more by creating designs that are intentionally bad.

As you enter the tattoo industry, it’s important to learn about this trending tattoo style so that you can understand the difference between an amateur and unprofessional tattoo vs. a purposefully “bad” tattoo because it’s an “ignorant style” tattoo.

In this article, we’ll cover:

  • Why ignorant style tattoos are more than just “bad tattoos”
  • Where ignorant tattoos came from
  • What kinds of designs fit with this style (and how to identify them)

Where Did Ignorant Tattoos Come From?

Tattoo in the ignorant style

Tattoos by Fuzi Uvtpk, the original “ignorant style” artist

Ignorant-style tattoos highlight clean, simple black lines, as well as script that contains dark or humorous messaging that appeals to the counterculture. 

The ignorant style started with French graffiti artist Fuzi Uvtpk, a tattoo artist who started his creative career by doing graffiti in the French subway system.

What Makes a Tattoo Ignorant?

counter culture tattoo design

The ignorant tattoo style is very unique and disregards many of the rules and common practices in tattooing. 

As the ignorant tattoo style has evolved, it’s taken two different forms, often with small tattoos. One is social commentary with very simple designs using humorous or even disturbing messaging designed to criticize or poke fun at mainstream culture. 

The other branch of ignorant tattooing takes the idea of extremely simple black line drawing and adds some embellishments to turn them into a piece of minimalist art on the body. 

While the ignorant style lends itself to stick-and-poke tattooing (DIY tattoos), it’s an art form that is gaining popularity for professional tattooers using a tattoo machine

Are Ignorant Tattoos Just Bad Tattoos?

Simple black design of a tongue

Though the word “ignorant” may make this tattoo style feel like it’s full of poorly done tattoos, the word is used more to describe the dry humor and wit involved with the style. Ignorant tattoos are still well-done, intentionally designed tattoos, but they are more concerned with the message than flashy design, which often doesn’t matter to these clients. 

Where some people are attracted to intricately designed tattoos, ignorant-style tattoos appeal to those who want something simple and to the point. People often look to get tattooed in this style with their friends, as this type of tattooing lends itself to funny designs that highlight inside jokes. 

Tattoo quality has historically been judged based on the rules of traditional tattoo artists, but styles like this one are changing how we evaluate what makes a tattoo good.

How to Determine if a Tattoo is in the Ignorant Style?

Lisa Simpson with the caption “The whole damn system is wrong”

A lot of people struggle with the idea of “ignorant” tattoos because - at first glance - they can look like badly-designed tattoos. 

The simplest way to decide if you’re looking at an intentionally “ignorant” tattoo is to look at the quality of the line work. Ignorant tattoos done by an experienced artist will still have strong, bold line work that isn’t shaky or blown out. Tattoos that are actually bad tattoos will be super shaky, blown out, or have areas that look faint.

Prepare for a Tattooing Career with the Artist Accelerator Program

Having a career in tattooing is not only fulfilling, but it’s also the most stable way to make a living as an artist. However, for decades, the process to become a tattoo artist has been notoriously difficult. 

The apprenticeship process requires aspiring artists to work 50-60 hours a week without pay for 2-4 years. That, combined with the toxic culture of abusing apprentices, makes getting into the industry almost impossible for newcomers. 

That’s why we created the Artist Accelerator Program. Our online course provides a simple, structured way of learning to tattoo that has been proven to work by over 2500 successful students, with many of them having gone on to open their own shops all around the world. 

Inside the program, we’ll take you through every step of the tattooing process in 9 clear, easy-to-follow modules and support you along the way within the Tattooing 101 Mastermind online community.

In the Mastermind group, you’ll collaborate with other students, get answers to your questions, and receive personalized video feedback on your artwork and tattoos from professional tattoo artists. With this friendly community of both new and experienced tattooers, you’ll never be stuck again. 

When you join the Artist Accelerator Program, you’ll have instant access to the full course and the Mastermind community, as well as our 30-Day Flash Challenge and recorded interviews with tattoo artists from all over the world. 

Click here to learn more about the Artist Accelerator Program.

Looking for a tattoo apprenticeship?

Tattooing 101's Artist Accelerator 90 day program is the closest thing to a real apprenticeship

  • 500 video modules
  • Professional tattoo artist coaches
  • Private mastermind community
AUTHOR
Nathan Molenaar

Nathan is a licensed professional tattoo artist with over 8 years’ experience working at studios across the globe, including Celebrity Ink, the world's largest tattoo studio chain.

When he's not tattooing, he spends his free time sharing his experience and knowledge with aspiring artists who dream of pursuing a career in the tattooing industry.

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