Gone are the days when simple tattoo designs ruled the roost. Today, shading is what the world has taken fancy of. With this article, explore information on how to shade a tattoo.

How To Shade A Tattoo

Eyeing to be one amongst the stylish and fashionable? Then, go get yourself tattooed. Tattoo is becoming a cool, popular and stylish trend to boast of among youngsters. It has become a style statement and a symbol of youth. Popular worldwide, tattoo adds uniqueness to the personality. Today, tattoos are available in uncountable designs, be it size, shape or color. Simple tattoo designs have long been there in the fashion circles. Right from cute girly designs to gothic ones, each tattoo depicts a story of its own. Talking about the latest fashion trend in tattooing, shading is what has been the talk of the town in the recent times. Tattoo designing is not a difficult task to perform, but shading makes it a little complex. Shading not only gives an extra effect to the tattoo, but it beautifies the design all the more, bringing out the intricate features and hidden attributes. It creates depth in the design and also lends a 3D effect. To do flawless shading in the tattoo, concentration and care is highly required. Below are the instructions to shading a tattoo carefully.
Image: itsacherrylife@flickr
Shading A Tattoo
Things Required
  • One Tattoo Machine
  • Sterile Water
  • Sterile Needle
  • Inks of desired color
  • Cloth
  • Dip the tattoo needle into the desired color of ink. The color of the ink will mainly depend on the design of the tattoo. There is also an option of blending two inks of different color and carrying out a new color. For darker shades, a non-diluted ink works fine, while for the lighter shade, slightly dip your needle into the sterile water.
  • Now place the needle in the sideways of the design and tilt it a little. Move the needle as you would do while painting. For dark shades, move the needle slowly while to have lighter shades, the needle should be moved faster. This will give the design a very neat effect. Concentrate on the work lest you make errors.
  • Holding the skin in the area of the tattoo and stretching it accurately also holds a great importance. Over stretching should be avoided at all costs. It may hamper the shading effect. While shading, hold the area tightly and stretch it a little. This would help in clearer and neater shading.
  • Take care of the pressure and depth that you are applying while shading. Pressure given to the needle depends upon the nature of the design. Dark shading requires a little more pressure than the lighter ones.
  • Keep on cleaning the surface of the tattoo, as during shading, a lot of extra ink is left on the design. If not cleaned instantly, the outline of the design will not be clearly visible and may lead to mistakes. Keep on cleaning the surface with a cloth, especially when dipping the needle again for fresh ink.
  • You can also add a little white ink to the shading as well as to the whole design, so as to get the highlighted effect. Dipping small amount of white ink in your main color ink can bring an artistic effect in your design.
  • If in case you make a mistake while shading, don’t worry. Go for dark shading in that area. This would not only hide your mistake, but would give the design a profundity.
  • Clear the surface when the shading is complete with a soft cloth.
Note: The needle that you use in the process should be a sterilized one. Never use the ‘used’ needle again, without getting it sterilized. It is advisable to use the ‘use and throw’ needles.

How to Cite

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