I am currently calling Missoula Montana home and working primarily out of Montana Tattoo Company, but I travel often.
I charge $160/hr for hourly tattoos by request and a little less for larger sessions and when I am given more creative control. I love to do this but I can only do so much tattooing and homework in a week. You are paying for a finished product that you will carry forever and the factors that affect that differ from job to job. You will get the most value for the money by allowing me to be a part of the design process as this is something that is worked into the hourly price anyway. If you want the best work at the best rate, leave it all to me. I have a page of ideas that I want to do and if your concern is more to have cool tattoos on specific body parts then this may be for you. Many of them are just ideas and the artwork is on hold for your interest, but take a look and those are all things that I am very motivated to do.
Due to the size and nature of the work that I do, I am only able to get to one to two clients per day. This means that if someone flakes on an appointment, my economic situation gets severely stressed out
and I am left sitting with nothing to do for a half or full day. Therefore, I will require a deposit on your tattoo anywhere from $50 to 10% of the final price. This will be credited to you on your last session, also known as a tightening session. This is when the work is for all intents and purposes finished , but I will want to take up to a half day to dress it up with rich blacks and highlights. The purpose of this is to make sure that you make all of your appointments, and the finished product is realized in a timely manner. I understand that things come up, and that tattoos are a non-essential purchase, but this is a serious business for me and my family, so I require 24 hours notice of any issues with appointment times so that I can fill that time. I will do the same for you. Failure on your part will result in loss of deposit. Failure on my part will result in an additional credit.
The deposit money basically insures my drawing time and your day off. Meaning that I get something for the work that I put in, and you can be assured that we are going to get down to business when you come in. The money will be credited to your total when it comes time to pay for the tattoo. Paying the deposit says that you are familiar with me and comfortable with my work. At all times my work is available to see either in my physical portfolio in the shop, on my personal website MickeySchlick.com or on the shops website MontanaTattooCompany.com. I will not do every tattoo, but this is on a case by case basis and more related to my ability to create something new and artful with the parameters given. Essentially, if I do not think you are going to be as stoked on it in 10 years as you are today, I will turn it down. Flow and Fit are two major factors this. I want you to be confident that we can come to an agreement on the tattoo while understanding that I have a few years of expertise and advice to offer but that your long term happiness is my ultimate goal. Even if that means that I am not the right artist for you.
You are under no obligation to get the tattoo and may make changes. I may make those changes at the time of the procedure or directly on the skin. You may make up to two subject matter changes. This means completely changing your idea and could need rescheduling while maintaining your deposit. In my experience, more than this could mean that you need a little more time for your ideas to crystallize or that we are just not meant to be as a team. Either is fine, but in that case, the deposit would compensate me for my time. For us both, this is a drop in the bucket in comparison to having a fully completed tattoo that you don’t like, or a horrible experience in the process. In retrospect, I made about every tattoo mistake there is when getting my own tattoos and have probably had more removal than you will ever have placed on in the first place
What is your style?
I love tattooing and all of the styles and techniques I am able to explore in a given week. That said I really love and excel at the realistically styled stuff, and even through I have made a name for myself with attention to detail, bigger is almost always going to be better and I am not so eager to do the small stuff these days. I love working in color but feel that for many applications black and grey will have better predictability over time, so that is on a case by case basis. I’ve been getting more into the illustration type of work lately, but my I don’t think I will ever lose my love of portraiture and caricature, of both animals and people. I prefer to make my subject matter as large as my clients will allow to maximize detail, flow and the use of space. This does not necessarily mean a more expensive tattoo, but it does often mean that it will be readable much longer and look better from a distance that smaller designs. I try to steer people away from common designs and lettering, a picture is worth 1000 words after all and I want to help tell your personal story. Often it is possible to tattoo smaller than what will actually hold over time so I try to plan for the aging process.
I will only tattoo my own artwork and I generally ask my clients about their thoughts and feelings and experiences that led them to wanting a tattoo, rather than about the exact subject matter and placement. Often I will be able to help my clients with a lot of insight into ideas for symbolism and design that they may not have thought of before hand and I really enjoy being part of the process from the very core of the idea all the way through the healing process and finished photos. If you are travelling and we need to do consultations through a video service. That is fine.
Do you tattoo minors?
No. Most of the work that I do is larger in scale and requires money and introspection that minors are just not capable of and commitment that they are not ready for. The local law in Montana is that a parent may sign for a child to be tattooed, but having made all of the bad tattoo decisions that one can make all by myself, I HIGHLY recommend against that.
How long do I have to wait?
This is on a case by case basis, but usually I am booked solid by about two weeks to a month out. This is also how long it takes me to put most pieces together. Sometimes for the larger or more involved work I like more time, but I am generally pretty open to let you know about this and am almost always pretty easy to keep in contact with.
Can I bring all my friends?
Here’s the deal with that, I’m usually relaxed enough once the tattoo starts but throughout the drawing and setup process I’m usually pretty focused and get uncomfortable if people are watching me or if I have to talk to anyone besides the person getting the tattoo. In fact, you will probably think I am super direct with you at this point, but most of that will go away once the tattoo starts. This is to just cut out as much wait time for you as possible and maximize our tattooing time. This thing is going to be on you for life and I like to have my head in just the right place. Once we start, they can be there but like the rest of the tattoo, less is more. tattooing is a very personal activity for the people engaged in it and very boring for the people who are not, don’t torture your friends and loved ones by making them sit quietly and uncomfortably with nothing to do for hours on end while you get tattooed. I will do whatever I can to make you as comfortable during the process as possible.
Eat before you come, wear something that will be comfortable and allow me adequate access and you adequate privacy, you should be conscious of the fact that I will need a few inches of space all of the way around the tattoo, you will need to be stretched out, it will probably take a few hours and it can get rather messy. Other than that just dress appropriately, often it is uncomfortably hot in the summer and on the cold side in the winter, keep that in mind. If you are going to be laying down or awkward for a while and wish to bring a pillow or blanket, that is fine. Depending on the tattoo, the shop and the day I often throw a set of headphones on and jam out in my own little world as I work on you and I encourage you to do the same. We have WiFi so you can also use your laptop or tablet or mine to watch a video. It is in both of our best interest for you to be as comfortable as possible during the process because this will allow you to sit more still for longer periods of time. Come prepared, but if I need to stop or let you move or supply something to help in this please feel free to let me know.
My travel schedule changes all the time. I’m trying to hit a lot more conventions now and I am usually down to go anywhere as long as I am recouping my costs in going there. I love to travel and my family is supportive of my work. So hit me up if you can’t find it listed on my calendar and I will let you know whats good. If you are in or around the LA area, I make trips as often as I can fill my time with work, so if you are interested please hit me up and I will get you on my next trip down.
If you want to book an appointment for a new tattoo please hit up my Tattoo Consultation Page,. This asks everything I need to know to get a feel for your project and puts it in a folder in my inbox that is easy for me to search for and keep track of. If you want to finish a tattoo or do something that does not require a lot of drawing on my part you can drop me a line on the bottom of any pace.