If these don't answer the one you have on the tip of your tongue, give us a call or stop in. We can answer stuff in person too.
You got this.
This is not going to be your only one, just your first one.
Sleep well the night before.
Eat a good meal an hour or so before you come in.
If you can get lightheaded during shots or blood draws, bring some sugar in case you get a little lightheaded.
Dress for the artist to be able to get at the spot you want tattooed.
Just bring one friend that is good at talking to you to keep your mind off the discomfort. Your big group won't help you relax and will likely be asked to leave since they aren't getting tattooed and are just taking up space.
DON'T TAKE PICTURES OF OUR ART.
--sorry to yell, but just don't. It's theft.
Put the tattoo where you can look at it and where you have the ability to cover it in formal settings. You don't know yet if it will impact your particular life and if there will be a time not showing it might be a nice option.
We at Bozeman's Tattoo Alley believe tattoos are a great way to mark your way through your life and collect the images for your rite of passage between childhood and adulthood along with adding adornments to the bodies you came to us with. That being said, until you are of a legal age to sign for yourself (18 in case you were wondering), we will not tattoo you and encourage those under the age of 18 to come see us as soon as you are of age and have an official ID to prove it.
We do not pierce, so we do not charge for piercings. Also, we don't sell jewelry...you know, because we don't pierce.
We don't have a shop hourly rate as we all tattoo at different speeds. Also, we have different levels of experience, and different talents.
Tattoos are first and foremost an art form, secondly a craft, and thirdly a service. Every artist in here is an independently contracted Tattooer and therefore sets their own prices for their work. We can usually give you an estimated range your tattoo might cost based on the design, style, size, and placement along with your preference for artists, but the cost is ultimately up to the individual tattooer you are working with.
We generally price by the piece and by the session for larger pieces. All deposits are non refundable and non transferable and will ultimately come off the price of the final session.
Yes. No tattoo in this shop will be less than $100.
Your tattoo that is small and simple is likely going to be more than that.
Tattoos last your lifetime. Invest good money in yourself. Believe in yourself, we do. Don't bargain shop your life.
Good tattoos aren't cheap and cheap tattoos aren't good. Have yours done by a professional.
Short answer is no. Unfortunately the deposits are specific to the artist and the time set aside for you. If you are unable to make an appointment and give us at least 48 hours notice (so we can fill that spot with someone else trying to get on our schedule), we will reschedule you and the deposit will transfer. If you don't show, or outright cancel the appointment you will forfeit your deposit and will be required to submit another deposit to reschedule or schedule another tattoo.
At this point, Nick dedicates his Wednesdays and Saturdays to doing walk-ins exclusively and does them on a first come first serve basis. You will need to come to the shop to get on his list and he will call the next person on his list as he is finishing up with the tattoo he is working on. We open at noon, so get here early to have the better chance of getting in. Keep in mind walk in tattoos are those requiring little to no design time, so ready to go tattoos are what we're looking for here. If it is a design that requires more that 10-15 minutes to get ready to start on we will likely want to set it up as an appointment.
That being said, we do try and squeeze in tattoos "day of" when we can depending on the appointment schedule for the day, so it never hurts to check and see if we can squeeze you in. Just understand if we need to set you up a time to come back.
On that note, if you are traveling to Bozeman and wanting to get your nifty travel tattoo on a whim, reach out before the hour your flight boards, preferably the day before at least, and we might be able to get you taken care of. We can always set up an appointment over the phone with a deposit.
The bandages we apply to the tattoo after the application process are to remain in place for an hour to allow your body to clot and stop leaking. Also, it allows you to seal off a bit so not everything in your environment can get into your new tattoo.
Tattoos heal well when clean and allowed to get oxygen. It is a scrape, a scratch. It will heal well if you take care of it.
Take the bandage off within 1-3 hours or so, but only if you are somewhere you can wash it with a good lathering soap. Preferably antibacterial and with warm water. Blot the healing tattoo dry with a clean towel and allow it to get dry to the touch. For the first 3-4 days you will want to then apply a small amount of AQUAPHOR ointment to the tattoo and give it about 5 minutes to fully absorb. Then take a clean paper towel and blot off any of the excess ointment as well as any moisture that has made its way to the surface.
Repeat that process 1-4 times a day for the first few days until it starts to itch and is no longer pushing moisture out when you apply the ointment. You will then switch to a fragrance free, basic hand lotion and apply a small amount to the tattoo throughout the flaking and peeling stage of the healing process always washing the tattoo with soap and water before applying anything to it.
Remember not to:
-Re-bandage the tattoo after our bandage comes off.
-Apply triple antibiotic ointment, alcohol, hydrogen peroxide, or other first aid products meant to fight an infection that isn't there. Just keep it clean and keep it from drying out and DON'T PICK IT!!!
-Keep it out of direct sun for the first month.
-Keep it out of situations where it becomes saturated with moisture. ie swimming pools, hot tubs, saunas, sweaty situations (hot yoga, gyms, etc.), lakes, rivers, streams, mud puddles, fish tanks, or troughs until it is done pealing.
-Don't wear clothing that will get stuck to the new tattoo or rub a hole in it. Think about straps and waistlines. Also, for the first few days, lift up on your clothing periodically to insure you aren't getting stuck to it. Sometimes even loose clothing that doesn't move around can become stuck to the little discharge you can get from a tattoo in the first few days.
-Come back and see us if anything didn't stay when it's done healing (6-8weeks).
Keep in mind that where you want the tattoo is going to need to be exposed during the process. We do have blinds we can bring into the station to give a little privacy, but mostly you are going to be seen. To wear clothing that can be open to the area while covering your unmentionables is where it's at.
Out of respect for our wives, please think about what you are getting and don't wear a sundress and nothing else to get your ribs done or be commando under your tight jeans for a thigh piece.
We do have shop merch you can purchase to maintain some modesty if you forget to plan ahead, just ask.
Here's the one that pisses everyone off.
If you have never worked with us, or have never gotten your hands/neck/face tattooed before...we will tell you no.
We aren't the guys to pop that cherry for you. If you have already got tattoos on the public places (hands/neck/face), we will consider adding to them, covering them, reworking them, etc., but if you don't have them and we don't have a client/tattooer relationship established to have an opening for that conversation, the blanket answer is no.
Sorry not sorry.
We are in an age where we fight labels by creating new terms/labels/styles. Sometimes you need to realize we are older than you think and these terms don't mean to us what they mean to you.
Some of us use thinner linework for certain things than others and some of us have a way of doing our color that is less structured.
Flash tattoos to us old fellers who have been tattooing for longer than the Covid age refer to the designs we have available on our walls that are ready to tattoo with linework that we have ready to go. So Yes to all and No to all depending on what you mean.
We like tattoos to age well and the body is ever changing its pliability as well as its integrity. Therefore, we don't do tattoos that only look good when they are first done and quickly look old, faded, or terrible if we can avoid it.
If we think what you want to do is going to age poorly, we will give you the options we can. If you still insist on getting your tattoo done in a way we don't think will keep it's integrity over time, please understand when we ask you to look elsewhere for someone who doesn't mind taking your money knowing the tattoo will age poorly or who doesn't know any better.
We like to tattoo from designs that are good tattoo designs, sure, but we have spent a lot of years doing this thing we love and designing beautiful tattoos for people based on conversations we have with them and the ideas they have.
By all means, gather your thoughts and set up a time to come talk with us about your idea and we can show you what we can do. If you have images as reference, ok. If you just have ideas, ok. If you have pictures of tattoos we did not do...ok, but keep in mind you should look through our work first and decide who in here you would like to work with on your piece and understand they will do what they are best at based on what you are looking for.
We like tattoos that are positive and fun. If you want hateful tattoos or tattoos that are going to look like crap, we probably aren't your shop.
You can always try Amazon.
Nope. We have respect for what we do and where we work and require that you do too.
Tattoos are uncomfortable and they are supposed to be. Any rite of passage requires pain, blood, and permanence. You need to earn them.
...also, the state of Montana does not allow for licensed shops to use numbing products during the application process.
It'll be ok. You can do this.
No. We don't hire interns. That's not how this works.
If you want to get into tattooing, and want a job here, you should know a couple things.
You need to find an apprenticeship. This is a craft and a master craftsman should take you in and teach you everything from the ground up.
We don't hire anyone who hasn't served an apprenticeship and been tattooing for at least 5 years.
If you want to be a professional, learn from a professional. Find the professional you want to teach you and spend time with them getting tattooed. Start there.
Leaving a mark isn't hard. To make a tattoo you just need to make a cut in the skin and get some pigment in and the skin has to heal around it and not reject it.
Hell, I have a tattoo from where my cousin stabbed me with a pencil.
Making quality tattoos in a professional manner however takes time and skills that you should be taught correctly to begin with. That way, when you are looking for a quality shop to work in they don't have to deal with all the bad habits you got from trying to find your own way with Amazon and a bottle of booze.
If you want to do this, do this right. Tattooing isn't a job. It's a life. Be the best wizard you can be. Stop tattooing in your house. Pay someone to teach you the craft correctly.