The growing fascination of youth with permanent inklings has opened up the possibilities for tattoo artists in the country over the years, says says tattooist Sameer Patange, the common denominator of celebrity clients like Hrithik Roshan, Sushmita Sen, Sanjay Dutt and Urmila Matondkar, to name just a few. “There definitely is a good scope in India for aspiring tattoo artists, but the only problem is that the number of skilled artists is really low and the number of unskilled artists who are coming into the industry is very high,” says Patange. According to Patange, the best place for an aspiring artist to start is as an apprentice to a tattooist who has been working for a long time because he can give “cumulative knowledge of what to do and how to do in a very short amount of time”. “Make sure it isn’t an impulsive decision. Secondly, do your research. Find out where you’re going to get the tattoo from. Cheap tattoos are bound to be a disaster. So, spend a little more and get the best work done from a good artist,” he said. Although working with celebrities can be a nervous exercise, Patange insists that the stars he has worked with have been “very normal” people.”A lot of people fancy the fact that I have worked with all these people. When you work with them, you feel that they’re just like one of us, they’re very normal people. All of them have been so down to earth and humble,” said the artist, who had inked Bollywood star Hrithik and his former wife Sussanne with ditto tattoos on her birthday.
Most popular placements
■ Women have been the ankle and shoulder-blade
■ Males have always opted for biceps or the arm
■ Most opted-for tattoo designs
■ For women, the most common tattoos are butterflies, fairies, flowers and tinkerbells. * For men usually opt for tattoos of Lord Shiva and a lot of other religious symbols.