How to support tattoo artists
WHILE Haylee Cotter’s tattoo studio might be closed, there are many ways you can still support her business.
The owner of The Arrow’s End Tattoo Parlour in Rockhampton CBD was forced to close by Wednesday following restrictions by Prime Minister Scott Morrison surrounding the coronavirus pandemic.
Haylee was watching the chaos hit all over the world and had been preparing herself and her artists for the possible closure of the studio.
Arrow’s End has five artists who work as sole traders, essentially renting chairs off Haylee, and operate on a commission basis.
Haylee is well known in town for her work and was booked out until August.
Now, as she has no clients, Haylee and her tattoo artists have had to look at other ways they can make an income.
Haylee cannot stress enough that despite tattoo studios being closed, she urges everyone to never, ever get a tattoo at home.
“One of the best things we can do at the moment is not to do that, we need to distance and isolate ourselves as much as we can,” she said.
Buying gift vouchers goes a long way supporting the business’ cash flow.
Arrow’s End gift vouchers can be arranged through email and are valid for three years.
Some artists, including Haylee, are offering commission work.
“It gives us something to do and it’s a way for artists to make money,” she said.
These are normally advertised on their Instagram pages and can be anything from rendition of pets, digital alterations of photos, stylised images of portraits, themed artwork like a pet in a Harry Potter style or business logos.
The artwork and graphic design depends on the artist.
“We do work in other mediums, some artists do paintings and will sell original paintings, a lot of other artists do water colours, or large scale prints,” she said.
Haylee is grateful she is still able to channel her skills during these trying times.
“It’s very fortunate I can morph my skillset into something I can do from home and online,” she said.
“People in the hospitality industry can’t set up a cafe at their house or anything like that.”
On Thursday morning she had already received five requests from customers, for which she was feeling very blessed.
“It’s just amazing how people will come together in times like this, even with their restricted cash flow,” she said.
And when things do go “back to normal”, it’s going to take some time ,Haylee said.
“It’s not going to go back to the way it was, there will be an economic downturn,” she said.
Haylee has owned her own business for almost six years, with her first studio in Allenstown.
She has seen downturns but they have never been greatly affected.
“I think it’s something (tatoos) people will always treat themselves to in difficult times,” she said.