Rockhampton Tattoo Artist Fears License Would Drive Away Aspiring Tattooists
Saturday, Jan 11, 2014: Come July 1 and you will need a licence to run a tattoo parlor or even do tattooing professionally. The news has shocked the tattoo industry. Tattoo artist Kelly Webb from Redback Ink in Rockhampton fears that this move, which he sees as an attempt to raise revenues, would discourage talented artists from joining the tattoo industry.
From July 1, 2014, Queensland police would screen applicants to ensure that they are suitable for working as tattooists and have no associations to motorcycle gangs that indulge in illegal racing and other criminal activities.
Cops would check for palm prints, fingerprints and whether or not aspiring tattooists have associates in bike gangs. As Kelly puts it, being a member of a motorcycle group or even knowing a bikie can mean that your application would be shunned.
A body art tattooist licence would cost $350 for 1 year. If you wish to run a tattooing business, you would have to fork out $1150 for one year to get a tattoo operator licence. Many would-be tattooists are likely to view this as an additional expense but Kelly Webb says she is surprised "that they didn't do this sooner." She fears that the high yearly fees and strict criteria would be a loss to the tattoo industry in the form of money and talented professionals.
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