Japanese tattoo. A cultural artwork
Japan has a very rich art history of which tattooing takes a big part in it. The Japanese style of tattooing is one of the oldest that exists. For example, we know that the first mentions of Japanese tattoos date back several thousand years. Turns out that they have been more obsessed in the far east for longer than we've been in the west.
Read more about Japanese tattoos on this page!
What is a Japanese tattoo?
Japanese tattoo are also called 'irezumi', which means 'returning ink'. This is the Japanese word for tattoo. This style is definitely recognizable and unique with centuries of perfecting under control. Traditional irezumi is done by hand with the usage of metal needles and wooden handles. They need a special kind of ink for this. The traditional Japanese tattoo process is painful, takes up a lot of your time and is only performed by a handful of tattoo artists with contemporary tattoo machines.
What is the meaning of the Japanese tattoo?
Most of the subjects from Japanese tattoos, are connected to the Japanese culture and mythologies. Japanese people believe in Shinto, the most followed religion in Japan. Because of this, a lot of people show respect and admiration for nature. According to this religion, everything has something godly in them. This is also know as the nature ghost or kami. These Japanese tattoos give certain features like beauty, courage, fortune, ... to flowers and animals. By tattooing those plants or animals, people hope to adopt those specific features.
Tattoos in the Japanese style: experience and expertise
It takes years of experience and a lot of research, to master Japanese tattoos as an artist. In general, artists use a blueprint, this is the drawing that was designed beforehand and can be put on the skin to help the artist. The backgrounds, that can arrange a coherence, are usually put freehand. This means that the artist can directly start drawing on the skin, without having it designed beforehand. Of course there is a difference between the artists. This style is also usually tattooed in color, but it's also possible in black and white.
Popular Japanese designs and meanings
The designs of Japanese tools originate from the mythology. That's how the phoenix is the Japanese norm for the female symbol that stands for fire, justice and loyalty. The dragon in Japan is known for courage and protection, which is typical for males.
Koi in Japanese means both fish and love, that's why the animal is unpalatably connected to love.
Flowers are often found in Japanese tattoos, especially the sakura or cherry blossom, the symbol for beauty, change and suffering.
Watch this video for more inspiration
These are our artists specialized in Japanese tattoos.
Where are you located?
Inksane has 3 studios
Roeselare: Ardooisesteenweg 166, 8800 Roeselare -. email@example.com
Sint-Niklaas: Casinostraat 39, 9100 Sint-Niklaas -. firstname.lastname@example.org
Brussels: Press Street 3, 1000 Brussels - email@example.com
Some of our guest artists visit every studio, but most of them stay with one.
Every studio has a separate schedule.
When are you guys open?
All studios are open from Tuesday till Saturday, between 11:00h and 18:00h
Appointments with guest artists can also take place on Sundays and Mondays
Do I send my examples to the artist or to the reception?
Our reception takes care of the bookings, organization and appointments.
Often the high artistic qualities of our artists are accompanied by a lack of social and organizational skills 😉
That's not always the case though, but it's a handy guideline.
Are you open during holidays?
Most of the time we are indeed, but don't hesitate to contact our reception to be sure!
My appointment is on a Sunday, is that correct?
Our reception is open from Tuesday until Saturday.
You can walk in without appointment, with all your questions.
Appointments with our guestartists could be on a Sunday, Monday or holiday because they usually work 7/7 for the short period they are here.
Can I come and check my design beforehand/will the design be forwarded to me?
A guest artist is a high level artist from another country coming to our shop for a short period of time (for example 3 weeks).
Checking the design always happens in our shop. We don't send the design by e-mail. Because your guest artist is not in the shop permanently, checking your design beforehand is not always convenient. If you really want to see your design beforehand, we could for example schedule an appointment of 15 minutes on day 1 and have you tattooed on day 5.
We schedule one client per guest artist a day. On the day of your appointment you will have enough time to discuss and adapt your design if necessary.
Would you like to see the design beforehand? Be sure to let the reception know when booking your appointment.
Can I just get a design from you guys?
No, that is not an option.
Can I pay with card?
You can pay with cash, card and Inksane gift vouchers.
Can I buy gift vouchers?
You can! Visit our shop online or buy one at the reception!
You can choose the amount you want to put on it yourself.
Gift vouchers are valid for 1 year (the appointment has to be made within 1 year, the tattoo can be placed afterwards).
During the pandemic we obviously don't pay attention to the expiration date. 😉
You can use this voucher for tattoos and piercings in all of our studios.
Do you have a price list?
There is no general price list. We work with a wide range of different tattoo artists: each of them has its own price rates and waiting period.
Some artists work with an hourly rate, others prefer a set price.
Our guest artists mostly have a day session price rate.
If you send us an e-mail with the tattoo you have in mind, we can give you a price estimation. In order to do this of course, we have to know what you want, which style, size, color or black and grey and body placement. If you don't know how big the tattoo should be or where to place it.. don't worry, our reception is happy to help you!
With the necessary information our reception can hook you up with the right artist and give you a price estimation. All this with a smile and free of charge.
Can I come in the shop without an appointment?
Every Inksane shop has a reception ready to answer your questions. You don't need an appointment to come in.
If it seems necessary to have a chat with the artist, we'll check if that is possible. If not, we will book in a short appointment to discuss your idea with the artist.
What is the price range for a sleeve?
That depends on several factors:
- The style (and thus the fitting artist. Every artist has their own price).
- The size of your arm.
- The complexity (or simplicity) of the design.
- Color or black and grey.
- Your skin type: We only know this when we start tattooing. Some skin types take the ink easily, for other skin types it can take up to 3 times more time before the skin takes the ink well.
A couple of ground rules:
- expect around 4 sessions with styles such as biomech subgenres, scripting and other classic allround.
- 5 to 7 sessions with black and grey photorealism.
- 9 sessions for full color realism.
Our reception is professionally trained in estimating the amount of sessions needed for any given tattoo.
If you mail us (or show us in person) your idea, we will ask the necessary questions in order to then point you towards one or more artists and give you an estimation of the price and waiting time.
Is there a price difference between color and black and grey tattoos?
A day session with the same tattoo artist has the same price, whether it's color or black and grey.
An artist specialized in color is not more expensive than an artist specialized in black and grey.
Though black and grey tattoos go faster, so you will see more result after one day session.
Fun fact: our realism artists almost always prefer to do full-color 🙂
Do I need to pay a deposit?
Yes, when booking an appointment we ask to pay a deposit.
With a guest artist that's usually around 150 euro.
If you book in via e-mail , you will receive an automatic e-mail with a payment button.
Via this button you will go to our deposit section and you can pay online.
If you book in via the reception, you will have to pay the deposit in the shop. This is possible with cash, card or an Inksane gift voucher.
Can I bring someone to my appointment?
You may bring maximum 1 person to your appointment.
If you are booked for a day session, we do not recommend you bring anyone along. It will be a long day for your partner.
What is the difference between regular artists and guest artists?
Regular artists are our Belgian (local) tattoo artists, that are in the shop every day.
Most of the time these artists are trained by us. They also speak (most of them) Dutch.
Guest artists, on the other hand, are highly skilled artists that we select from all over the world.
They almost never speak Dutch, but most of them can speak English.
A guest artist is only here for a limited period. For example 3 weeks.
95% of our guest artists return on a regular basis, so you can book in bigger projects with them and spread that over a longer time period.
What happens to my deposit if I can't make my appointment with a guest artist?
If you don't show up to your appointment, your deposit will be lost.
This is also the case when you cancel less than two business days before your appointment.
Guest artists are only here for a limited time, and their Inksane schedule has been fixed for a while. They count on you to show up to the appointment, since it is not possible for them to find another client last minute.
What happens to my deposit if I can't make my appointment with a resident artist?
When did you cancel?
- No show = deposit lost.
- Cancelling less than two business days before (business days = Tuesday until Saturday) = deposit lost.
- Cancelling more than two business days in advance (business days = Tuesday until Saturday) = deposit stays.
What if you cancelled on time?
- You can leave the deposit in our system until you book in again or you can receive it back as a gift voucher. The gift voucher doesn't mention a name so you can give it away as well.
- If you book in again immediately after moving the appointment, we will transfer your deposit.
- If you change from Inksane shop or Inksane artist, your deposit stays valid.
A deposit is never refunded in cash or by bank transfer.
How long does one day session take?
This, again, is different for every artist, but here are some ground rules:
- The session starts at 11h.
- then about an hour is spent on consultation, design, anatomy, placing the stencil, setting up booth ...
- After that, your tattoo artist will continue until your design is ready. This could be at 15.00h but this could also be at 18.00h.
- So don't plan your day in a way that you need to be home at a specific hour.
The hour at which your session is finished does not affect the price. Your price is a fixed daily price, and serves to finish that day's design. Some clients' skin absorbs ink easily, so we finish quickly, but it may as well be the other way around.
Do you also do cover-ups?
Some of our artists do cover-ups, some do not.
If you want a cover-up, say this from the start.
Most artists can cover a small tattoo with a much larger design. That being said, we have 2 cover-up specialists available: if your old tattoo took up your entire upper arm, your new tattoo obviously can't be much bigger. Our specialist will show you what is possible.
What you need to know about cover-up tattoos
- A cover-up is always darker than your original tattoo.
- You cannot use light elements or styles to cover (for example a portrait or a rose).
- Give your artist as much freedom as possible. This way you will get the best result.
- Ideally you laser your old tattoo a couple of times. The tattoo doesn't need to be gone completely but if the tattoo is already a little bit lighter, a lot of new possibilities open up for your new design.
Are you looking for a good tattoo laser company? Ask our reception.
Is it possible to retouch a tattoo that was done by somebody else?
Yes, but for that we need to see your old tattoo first. Through clear photos if you want to book via mail , or even better if you come by the shop. Our reception will then estimate which Inksane artist is suitable for this.
Can I swim/work out with a new tattoo?
If your tattoo is still fresh, it is important that your skin doet not get too moist.
Moist skin holds less ink, resulting in a faded tattoo.
Bathing, swimming, sauna, sweating, though work outs... they make your skin soft and moist. So we recommend you do not practice any of said activities before your tattoo is fully healed.
We recommend about 3 weeks of carefully taking care of your new tattoo.
Can I walk in the sun with my new tattoo?
No: we do not recommend you go out sunbathing. Not only during the first weeks after your tattoo, but also afterwards: a tattoo is only fully healed after 3 months.
Moreover, a tattoo is based on contrast. The lightest part of your tattoo is your skin color. The darkest part is the blackest ink. If you sunbathe often, your skin gets darker and so does the lightest part of your tattoo. This leaves you with less contrast, and makes your tattoo less ''readable''.
Finally, long exposure to the sun can break down the tattoo pigment. You should pay attention to that for the rest of your life.
Can I get a tattoo during the summer?
It doesn't matter so much, as long as you don't expose the tattoo to the sun, don't go swimming ...
So getting your forearm tattooed just before you leave on a trip is not very convenient.
Getting a tattoo during the winter/autumn/spring makes more sense but that shouldn't hold you back from getting one in the summer.
Can I get a tattoo when I'm pregnant?
There isn't a direct side effect between tattooing and a pregnancy but it's better to not take any risks during this period.
Baring the pain all day long also takes your immune system down a bit. You will be tired after such a session (pregnant or not 😉).
You want to avoid that, because you'll need as much energy as you can get a hold of in order to take care of your baby.
Can I go to you for piercings?
Of course! We have a webshop with high-end piercing jewelry. You can also book an appointment online to get pierced.
This is possible in each of our three studios (Roeselare, Sint-Niklaas, Brussels).