Frequently Asked Questions
Location and Studio Frequently Asked Questions
Where is MD Tattoo Studio located? What are the tattoo shop hours?
MD Tattoo Studio is located at 9545 Reseda Blvd. #2, Northridge, California 91324. We are open 7 days a week 10am to 7:30pm. We may leave early if we are finished working so please call ahead if you plan to stop by and it’s towards the end of the day. Reach us at (818) 700-2818.
How do I set up an appointment to get tattooed by one of your artists at MD Tattoo Studio?
We get a lot of requests for appointments and we want to let you know that we appreciate every single one. We are honored to know that you are interested in getting our artwork tattooed on you, and we understand that every idea comes from the heart. Please send us an email, call or stop by the shop to set something up. Emailing is a good way to go about setting up an appointment and within that email please give a brief description of what you would like to get done, including placement, size, color or black and grey. Clicking on “Artists” at the top of the page brings you to our individual artists profiles and emails. Browse through the galleries of tattoos and you can choose who you would like to get work done by and simply email, call them directly or stop on by.
How long are you guys booked out? Do I need to set up an appointment?
We do take walk-ins but it is not guaranteed that a specific artist will be available. Some of us are booked out a couple months and some of us are booked out just a few days. Setting up an appointment is best but we also often have spots that open up for some of us, so come on down or call us to see if we have time for a specific day.
Pricing & More Frequently Asked Questions
What is your deposit requirement and hourly rates?
We require a one hour amount according to what each tattoo artist charges per hour:
- Matt Hildebrand $150
- Kyle DeVries $150
- Bookie Thompson $150
- Owen Paulls $150
To get tattooed by Mike DeVries please email him off his personal website www.mdtattoos.com -Mike isn’t taking on every request he gets. For best chances to get in with him please fill out the entire form on the contact page and keep the tattoo description brief. His books are open for mini realistic color 3d tattoos!
For small tattoos that would take an hour or less we would still need a one hour upfront deposit which corresponds with which artist you choose. The price for small tattoos (shop minimum) depends on which artist you go with – their hourly rate is the minimum. For bigger tattoos we can give you a close ballpark figure on what it will cost once we know size, placement, color or black and grey, etc.
Deposits are non-refundable under any circumstances! If you give at least 48 hours notice before your scheduled appointment, we can reschedule your appointment to another date and you will not lose your deposit. If it’s under 48 hours or if you do not give the proper notice you will lose your deposit. If you would still like to get tattooed you unfortunatly will need to leave another deposit. PayPal/Personal Check payments are not accepted at the shop for deposits or tattoos.
What is your tattoo shop minimum?
MD Tattoo Studio shop minimum is $120.00 for small tattoos that take anywhere from 5-45 minutes. Anything that takes an hour or longer it goes to what the particular artist charges per hour. Your tattoo artist will be able to tell you exactly how much it will cost before you have it done, so you will know exactly what you will be paying.
Do you accept cash or credit cards?
Yes, we accept cash and all major credit cards.
Getting A Tattoo Frequently Asked Questions
How long does a portrait usually take?
On average, a portrait in color could take between 3-6 hours depending on size, placement on the body, and how detailed the image is. In black and grey, a portrait could take anywhere between 2-5 hours, also depending on those factors; and obviously, if the tattoo is really big it could take longer. These estimates are based on an average size, around 4 x 6 inches, give or take a little. I could give you a closer estimate of time after I see the picture and know size and placement.
Can I get you to draw a tattoo for me even if you don’t tattoo it yourself? Do you sell stencils?
I wish I could. The problem is lack of time. I have so many appointments set in stone that I have to get ready for that it is hard for me to make time for such a request. And sorry, I don’t sell stencils. If there is something you like that I have done and I’m not going to be the one tattooing it, find the artist that you’re going with and have him design a piece for you so it is more custom for you. Out of respect for me and the collector please don’t copy the exact tattoo, but rather get ideas and inspiration from them.
In your shop, do I have the option of being tattooed in a private room?
At MD Tattoo Studio we work in an open environment in separated cubicle style booths. It’s not very private, but we do have one private tattoo room that is available upon request. If you want to get tattooed in privacy please provide me or any one of us at MD studio with at least 24 hours of notice.
How do you feel about doing big projects on long distance clients?
I tend to get really picky on any big projects, whether it’s on a local client or long distance. The reason for that is the commitment behind it, I really have to be into it for me to take it on. Especially long distance clients, as they don’t realize how many trips it could take and the appointments get spaced out so far apart that it takes too long to get it finished. If you would like a big piece from me such as a back piece or full leg, you have to understand that it is not cheap and takes a lot of time. If I decide to take it on you have to be willing to come a minimum of once a month until it’s complete; twice a month is even better. I turn down a lot of big projects even from locals, please don’t take it personally if I don’t take on your tattoo project.
Do you do cover-ups?
Within the first few years of my career that’s all it seems like I did. I still do them every now and then. If it’s a cover-up that you need, please email a picture of your existing tattoo and let me know what you would like to cover it with and I will let you know. Sometimes your ideas for it just won’t work, but I’ll give you my opinion on it. Sometimes it might take some laser treatments before we could go and cover it, but it all depends on how dark the piece is and what you want to stick over it. Remember that full-color works best for cover-ups.
Do you do touch-ups on other artists work?
I would like to say no to this question, but every now and then I might take one on. I wouldn’t re-work a back piece, sleeve or anything big, but if it’s a small tattoo that you’re not happy with and you’re not ever going back to that artist (and I don’t know him/her), I might do it. If this is something you need, please send me an email of your existing piece that needs help. Keep in mind that I won’t do something like this at a convention.
Do you usually do a second sitting on your work?
If it’s a piece that is average size it usually won’t get a second pass. If it’s bigger and we just start it (map it in) that first day, then of course it’s going to need a second pass to finish on another day once it’s healed. If I do a tattoo that is called finished after that first session I may suggest a second sitting just to make it better. Most realistic portrait tattoos could use a second sitting, even if it doesn’t really look like it needs it, it will just help with the longevity of the tattoo and make it look even better. Think of it as an oil painting, revisiting it is always a plus, so you can get in there and tighten, smooth and detail things out.
General Tattoo Frequently Asked Questions
Do you take on apprentices? Any advice for someone looking for one?
At this time I have a new apprentice and will not be taking on another one for a long time. If you’re looking for an apprenticeship, I would suggest building a strong portfolio of drawings and paintings and researching the good tattoo shops in your area. Take your portfolio there and see if they would be interested in taking you on as an apprentice. If you get turned down, ask them what it would take? It might take making your portfolio stronger. Don’t get discouraged; use that as fuel to get better and keep trying.
What do you recommend for Tattoo Aftercare? How long will it take for my tattoo to heal?
Everybody has a little different method but this is what I recommend. When you leave the shop you’ll have your new tattoo wrapped up. Leave that wrap on for a couple hours, then take it off and go directly in the shower. Clean it really well with soap and water, lathered up in your hand (don’t use a wash cloth or loofah). You don’t want to wrap the tattoo again (unless you are sleeping in a hotel bed). The main thing you need to do is keep it clean. I suggest washing it at least 3 times a day until it’s healed. I recommend applying a thin coat of Redemption Tattoo Care on it 2-3 times a day for 3-4 days, or once it wants to start peeling, then use a fragrance-free lotion, such as Lubriderm or Curel lotion, apply that a few times a day until it’s healed, your tattoo should be healed in 9-14 days (give or take). During the healing phase you don’t want to go swimming or soak in the tub; and don’t scratch it. One other good option is, you can skip the lotion and use Redemption Tattoo Care until the tattoo is healed and skipping the lotion stage all together, you just want a very thin coat on it when you apply it on. Grab your own Redemption After Care “Click Here” Last but not least you half to check out MD Wipe Outz for the care and healing of your fresh tattoo which is great for on the go tattoo care by providing sterilized individually wrapped cleansing tattoo towels! “Click Here”
Do you do guest spots?
I don’t usually do guest spots, but if one comes up I’ll post about it!
Can I guest spot at your studio?
We currently have room, shoot us an email with your info!
How long have you been tattooing?
I’ve been tattooing since 2003.
Machine & Ink Frequently Asked Questions
What kind of tattoo machines do you use?
I’ve had my share with all different types of tattoo machines over the years, some I love and some I couldn’t recommend. I’ve used all sorts of coil machines, rotary tattoo machines, and air driven tattoo machines. I have come to the conclusion that for coil tattoo machines there are so many good tattoo machine builders out there I couldn’t even begin to make that list of the best coil machines out there but I do know Aaron Cane machines are great! Dan Dringenberg tattoo machines are Awesome! To say one is the best versus another is hard to say, it’s all personal preference with colts and rotary tattoo machines.
What do you think the best rotary tattoo machine is?
As far as rotary tattoo machines, there are a lot of great options on the market nowadays such as Fk Irons and Inkjecta! Stigma tattoo machines, NeoTats, Bishop and there’s many more out there that are great tattoo machines! I currently use the Fk Irons Xion Pen. Companies are coming out with new and improved tattoo machines all the time, so my opinion could change but that is where it stands as of now. Oh by the way another fantastic set of machines are the Inkjecta V.1, V.2 and the new Nano!
What kind of tattoo ink do you think is the best?
There’s some great tattoo ink companies out there! Eternal Tattoo Ink is my choice!Fusion ink, Intenze, Empire, and World Famous Ink.
Do you use Vegan Tattoo Ink?
Yes, Eternal Ink!
Who do you think has the best tattoo needles and cartridges?
I made the switch to tattoo cartridge needles years back and never looked back. Cheyenne cartridges and True cartridge needles are nice! As well as Peak and Eternal’s Red Dot cartridge.
Tattoo Decision Frequently Asked Questions
What kind of camera do you use to photograph your tattoos?
There are a lot of good cameras out there for taking the best tattoo photos! I actually just use my iPhone now. The cameras on the phones are great for good tattoo photos!
How do you decide to do a tattoo in black & gray/grey monochrome or full-color?
It’s usually not my decision. Usually my clients know what they want, but I will give my opinion when they ask for it or if I see something that seems odd or might not work well. For example, if someone wants the full grey color monochromatic and they have dark skin, I would suggest doing traditional black and gray, as it will look better over time. Usually I will go over the pros and cons of each before we start if they are undecided on what colors they want.
Can I get the same tattoo you have already done on somebody? Or can I use photos of your tattoos for myself or to use it on my website?
When I do a tattoo I take pride in its individuality and the custom work I put into it. I won’t duplicate the same tattoo, so please be respectful of me and the recipient of the tattoo. If you are interested in using a picture of my work for anything please write me and let me know, and I’ll give you personal permission.
MD Tattoo Co. / Ordering Frequently Asked Questions
Do you ship all over the world?
Yes, we ship all over the world. We do have some distributors in different parts of the world too. You can check online or with your local supplier and see if they offer what you’re looking for and if they do, it will save on shipping too.
Do you wholesale your tattoo products such as Wipe Outz and Tattoo Books?
What is Stencil Stuff and how does it work?
Stencil Stuff® is a tattoo transfer solution that was designed in 2005 by Mario Rosenau and Mike DeVries for tattoo artists to help apply longer lasting tattoo stencils on the skin. It is a non-toxic stencil transfer solution (lotion type gel) that you rub on the skin before applying the tattoo stencil. Stencil Stuff keeps that tattoo stencil from rubbing off so easily and it doesn’t mess up the tattoo stencil if you need to reapply it to get it right. It is also, and most importantly, a cleaner, safer way to transfer tattoo stencils. It is used by thousands of tattoo artists every day. You can check outwww.tattoostuff.com for more info. Tricks to using it: Shake bottle before using it, clean the area properly before applying the stencil. I like to use hand sanitizer or an alcohol-based product that cleans and also dries out the skin a little bit, which helps keep the stencil on even better. Once I do that, I rub it in like a lotion, leaving the area consistent (not too wet and not too dry) and after that it is ready for the stencil. Allow about 10 minutes to dry. I usually apply the stencil before I set up so it allows for a good amount of drying time. If it’s a small piece and you are not worried about it staying on for a long time, you could get away with just a few minutes of dry time.
For more information or Frequently Asked Questions on Tattoo machines and other Tattoo related topics, please visit my Tattoo Forum.
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