One day, mindlessly scrolling through Instagram as one does, I discovered an awfully familiar image from the endless depths of the app: my own tattoo design but like, 100 times uglier? I found the photo from a user’s profile that follows me and likes my pictures every so often – that’s how I got to their page and low and behold, the second to last post is this joke of an image. After a proper cackle I figured I couldn’t even be angry at this, more than anything it’s very funny to me. Regardless, this is a huge problem: why do tattoo artists copy other people’s work?
I often get asked whether I fear someone copying my designs. I don’t fear, I KNOW it’s being done. I dare say good artists don’t do that and bad ones fail at it. Although occasionally I have come across copies of great quality (thankfully not of my own art), that’s when I wonder how the “artist” not only had courage to copy a known design but also upload it? That’s your pride and honor?
Okay, whatever: someone in the Philippines is walking around with a similar piece. But my worst nightmare would be seeing someone here in Estonia with it and even worse, done by an Estonian tattoo artist. I think I’d pass out from anger.
But what if your favourite artist lives like, super far and you really REALLY want their work? There’s 2 options: 1. Save money and travel to them. 2. Get over them and let someone else who lives closer and has a similar style design it for you. I honestly think people should go on more tattoo-trips: discover new locations and get a really unique souvenir from your travels!
What do you think of tattoo plagiarism? Is it tolerable under certain conditions?