American Electric Tattoo: With Time Comes Innovation

Like with any work of art, the tools that the artists have used are just as important as the skill in which they used them. In the art world of tattooing, it is no different. From the bone needle of ancient man to the modern American electric tattoo tool, the tools are the extension of the hand and mind of the artist. As man has evolved so has the tattoo tool and the complexity of the art of tattooing was not left behind in this evolution. The application of the way the tattoos are provided has also changed.

American Electric Tattoo ImageAncient man, as far back as the Paleolithic era, has adorned themselves with tattoos. Some were to instill fear in an enemy while others tattoos has significant religious and spiritual meaning. The first tattoo tools were the bones from animals such as fish and birds. These bones were tiny, sharp, and sometimes hollow. They needles were dipped in dyes made from plants and mixed with clay. Once dipped into the mixture, the artist would pierce the skin causing the dye to discolor the skin to make the design.

Later, the Egyptians took up tattooing to decorate their skin and even used tattooing for makeup around the eyes and mouth. There has even been mummies found in the tombs of the Kings and Queens that have ruled with tattoos on them. These were basic dots that surrounded the wrists and waists of the deceased to protect them in the afterlife. There methods were very basic compared to the American electric tattoo machine.

The Romans later on tried a new method of tattooing. They would pierce the skin with the needle and then rub the dye into the blood as the blood congealed. This allowed for more color and diversity of the tattoo, but it took longer because a color change would have to occur after the first color dried and the first tattoo was healed.

The Inuit tribes of N. American and Canada refined the technique by gauging how deep to pierce the skin for the tattoo. If the pierce was too deep, then the ink would be absorbed by the body and washed away by the immune system. If it was too shallow, the ink would not stay in the skin. The women of these tribes were skilled with needles because of their work with sewing animal skins and would practice on the animal skin before tattooing the wearer.

During the Industrial Revolution the American tattoo machine was invented. The original design of the tattoo machine has evolved, but the traditional tool is still used. Now the tattoo artist can use a myriad of tattoo needles that give definition to the lines and more depth in color. With this new diversity, the designs could become more intricate and the color could be more enhanced and have a longer durability before a re-inking is needed. With the introduction to air and electric tools, the artist’s imagination is now the only limit to what can be created.

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