From Tab to Skin

Technology changing the tattoo industry

Photo by Mitchell Weiss

Photo by Mitchell Weiss

The Biggest Tattoo Show on Earth took over the Las Vegas Convention Center from Sept. 18-20. In addition to highlighting the work of more than 1,000 artists from around the world, the convention highlighted the industry’s latest technology.

One advance reshapes how artists design tattoos. Wacom provides digital workstations—Cintiq—for artists. Cintiq provides the option of portable tablets or desktop displays for production. Artists use a stylus, giving them the feel of pencil on paper but with the accuracy and editing capabilities of a computer.

Photo by Mitchell Weiss

Photo by Mitchell Weiss

Russ Abbott of Ink & Dagger of Roswell, Georgia, credits Cintiq with allowing him to improve the accuracy and quality of his art. Abbott says customers find the technology alone to be an intriguing draw. Coupling the technology’s intrigue with a higher-quality stencil, the outline for the tattoo, Abbott is able to drive business to his shop.

Abbott started in the industry in 1999 by hand-drawing his art and importing it into Photoshop to make color additions or major edits. Abbott says that he is now able to spend more time focusing on nuances of his art rather than erasing and starting over to adjust his work.

Cintiq and Wacom technologies can be found at

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