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Unusual jobs

Thanks to the pop culture, tattoo, the ancient form of body adornment, is today a serious business.

india Updated: Jul 21, 2006 03:34 IST

It's a fad. It's an art. More accurately, it's an emblem of you attitude. Thanks to the pop culture, tattoo, the ancient form of body adornment, is today a serious business -- and a career option, if you like.

When Michael Cowasji started his career as a tattoo artist eight years ago, it was without any professional training, but when people became more aware of it, they demanded certificates and assurance. It was then that Cowasji went to the American Tattooing Institute, Arizona, for a professional course.

"I started my work from a makeshift arrangement and today I own a studio with six full-time tattoo artists," says Michael. My progress from a part-time job to a full-fledged career itself explains the popularity this profession has gained, he added.

For those who want take up tattooing as a career, the future is bright. "I am falling short of artists and it is difficult to cope up with the rising demand. As a result, I am training more and more people for this exciting profession," says Mike,adding that there is no institute in India for training tattoo artists.

The profession is not limited to etching designs on clients. It is more than that. Understanding your client's needs and performing accordingly are what make a difference in this profession.

The number of customers he gets has not increased much over the years but the designs people want to get etched have undergone a change. "I get eight to 10 clients everyday but I can't etch tattoo on all of them as the demand is for bigger and bigger pieces," says Mike. For tattooing a square inch, it takes about 20 minutes and a 4-sq-inch design is the minimum people get done.

The industry is growing. If Mike is to be believed, in the near future, the ones who are not tattooed are going to feel left out.

Different forms of tattooing are picking up which help in having a positive outlook towards life. Cosmetic tattooing is something to watch out for, says Mike.