We recently got the opportunity to get a tattoo from the talented folks at Body Canvas Mumbai. When I mention this to my parents, my dad showed particular interest in getting the tattoo himself! I was hesitant at first, but when he persisted I decided I would try making it happen.
On a Tuesday afternoon – my mother, father and myself, reunited in a tattoo parlour 11 years later (I’m referring to the time I got my first tattoo and I needed parental consent :p). When I spoke to Vikas (Founder) he told me how he was even happier that my dad decided to get the tattoo because he particularly loves it when parents and children bond while getting inked. He even goes as far as to offer free tattoo’s to moms on Mother’s Day, but you must accompany your mom to avail of it!
As a tattoo lover myself I was excited by the ambience and the buzzing tattoo gun and of course, see my dads reaction to the whole thing. We settled in pretty fast, as Vikas Malani (the co-owner of Body Canvas) greeted us warmly and the four of us chatted for what felt like hours. He told us how he believes in empowering people and trains and hires people with disabilities or no ‘proper’ education – but what must be there is a passion for art and tattooing! It makes me really happy when I hear of establishments doing such honourable work.
After getting to know one another, we moved on to the business at hand – the design of the tattoo.
Picking your tattoo design
My dad and I narrowed in on a blue Aquarius symbol that had a black tribal print around it (I originally thought that was part of the Aquarius sign), but Vikas let us know that it wasn’t and that a tattoo should be symbolic of your personality traits. We took his advice and scrapped the tribal design in the background and kept the 2 blue waves which signify equality and rationality.
I really appreciated the talk through and if you’re considering getting a tattoo, I suggest you take advantage of your consultation time with the tattoo artist. The artists know about tattoo meanings, symbolism and their significance, so keep your questions ready.
The painful part – getting the tattoo
Hygiene standard must be a top priority in a tattoo parlour and Vikas assured us that Body Canvas takes this very seriously. We saw the chair being disinfected and a new film wrap put around it, and then it began!
The sound of the gun and hip-hop and rap tracks in the background didn’t do much to suppress the pain my dad was experiencing. I tended to him for next to him for the next 25 minutes and I got to see Vikas in action, who was completely focused on getting the tattoo to perfection.
There were 3 inks used to make my dads Aquarius tattoo – white, navy blue and sky blue. The outlines were done in navy blue and white and sky blue were blended together in between. This colour combination for me was what made the tattoo beautiful. After this, my perception of coloured tattoos has completely changed!
After lying on his stomach for 35 minutes my dad was finally done and was owning his new tatt. He’s really happy with how it turned out and he personally recommends Body Canvas if you’re thinking of getting one!
Services offered by Body Canvas [please visit their website for updated info]
A permanent tattoo is a process – where ink is injected into the superficial layer of the skin to create something that stays lifelong with you.
Temporary tattoos are a great option for kids and teenagers who are not eligible for a permanent one. Additionally, they also help you get used to the look of a getting inked before the permanent one.
Cosmetic tattooing is an exciting option which helps enhance facial features such as brows, eyes, lips. Many of us may not be blessed with perfect features; however cosmetic tattooing helps achieve these perfect features.
Clinical Tattoos are done to cover unwanted marks like burn marks, birthmarks, surgery marks and so on. Marks from skin problems like vitiligo, eczema, etc. can be covered either by making a design tattoo over it or by filling in with skin coloured ink to merge with the skin.
A body piercing is exactly that — a piercing or puncture made in your body by a needle. A piece of jewellery is inserted into the puncture. The most popular pierced body parts seem to be the ears, the nostrils, and the belly button.
Tattoo Academy & Coaching
Bodycanvas offers tutoring services to students who want to take up tattooing as a profession at reasonable rates.
FAQs for getting a Tattoo at Body Canvas
How do I get prepared for a tattooing session?
One should not be under the influence of alcohol or drugs for at least 24 hours before getting a tattoo. Please come well rested and on a full stomach. You could even carry some juice or energy drink with you.
How do I choose a design?
The more research and homework you have done, the easier it is for us to guide you in the right direction. We do tattoo counselling wherein we try to understand the person and his/ her personality a little bit so that we can suggest what will look best on him/her and be comfortable to carry. We believe in custom work and can sketch a tattoo for you based on your concept.
What size it should be?
Remember, a tattoo changes through time. Fifteen years from today your tattoo will look different as your skin goes through the regular ageing process! If your tattoo is small with intricate details and lines too close to each other, in fifteen years it may turn into a big blur that you won’t be able to recognize. We will help you decide on an appropriate size.
Will the colour come on my body?
Black ink comes on every skin type most easily. The brightness of the other colours will depend on the complexion and texture of your skin.
Does it hurt?
Getting a tattoo can hurt, but the level of pain can vary. Some people describe the tattoo sensation as “tingling”. It all depends on one’s pain threshold, how efficient the person using the tattoo machine is, and where exactly on your body you’re getting the tattoo. Professionals know how deep to pierce the skin to create a permanent line.
Which part hurts the most?
Parts of the body which are bony (elbow, collar, knee, chin, wrist, ankle, spine, ribs, etc.) hurt more.
How long does it take to heal?
An average-sized tattoo (4 to 5 inches) takes 2 to 3 weeks to heal. This again depends on how well the aftercare instructions are followed and your body’s metabolic rate.
Is there an age limit?
The minimum age to get a tattoo is 18 years. If you are younger than 18 years, you need to obtain approval from your parents or legal guardian. ID Proof is mandatory.
Is it hygienic and safe?
Given the current ‘hygiene’ situation, we take proper care to see that your tattoo is done in an immaculate, clean and healthy manner.
It is mandatory for any artist of Body Canvas to wear a fresh pair of latex gloves before making a new tattoo. The equipment and materials used are either disposable or sterilized.
Do you give a free touch up?
YES! We give a free touch up within six months of the tattoo.
Could you mail me the designs?
Yes, once you have visited our studio and confirmed your appointment, we can mail you the designs.
How long does it take for the tattoo to get done?
It depends on the size, the intricacy of the design, the colours and the like. Big tattoos are done in sittings.
Do you do cover up jobs?
Yes, we do cover up jobs. For this, you will be required to take an appointment and visit our studio. This way we can personally see the design and will be able to suggest something better.
Do I have to take an appointment?
Yes, please take an appointment before coming. A tattoo is a personal job, and our artists need to share enough time with you!
How much will it cost?
The price depends on many factors such as size, shape, intricacy, design, colour, etc
Aftercare for Your Tattoo
Follow this regime 3 times a day for three days:
1 After removing the cling wrap, wash your tattoo gently with the help of mild hand-wash.
2. Please do not panic if you see excess ink around your tattoo, simply wash it.
3. Pat it dry with tissue paper, do not rub it.
4. Apply only a thin layer of any moisturiser, just enough to make it shine (your tattoo should be visible and the extra cream should be wiped off gently)
5. Cover the tattoo with cling wrap again.
6. After the 3-day regime apply Nivea cream in every 4 hours for 2 weeks and you’ll observe that your tattoo is glossy. Do not go to the gym or swim for one week (depending upon the healing of your tattoo) with proper care you can expect the tattoo to heal within 2-3 weeks. Call your artist if you notice anything unusual.
My dad & I are extremely happy with the results and can vouch for Body Canvas if you are planning on getting your tattoo. They have chains in Mumbai – Pedder Road, Bandra & Malad, Delhi – Hauz Khas Village & London – Greenwich.