VIRGINIA BEACH--This week, Joe is training to be a tattoo artist.
His teacher is Sierra Orrick at Studio Evolve, who showed Joe the process for creating indelible artwork on someone's skin.
The first step was to create a stencil of the tattoo pattern.
With that done, Joe put on the gloves. He was ready, willing and able to work on Ginger Bryant's foot. But, that would have been against the law.
"At this point in the tattoo I have opened up her skin and so I am subject to catch any bloodborne pathogens that she might have. And the state of Virginia requires that we are bloodborne pathogen-qualified at all times," said Orrick.
In other words, Joe didn't get work with the tattoo machine because he's not trained and certified. Lucky for Ginger!
Instead, Joe would work as the stencil applicator.
In the tattoo business, many licensed tatto artists take their certifications seriously.
"It's kind of a big deal in terms of process and certification, and renewing every year and yearly education," said Studio Evolve owner Gabriel Cece.
Ginger thinks of her skin as a canvas to tell her story.
"Once you get one, to be honest with you, it is pretty addicting. Even if you hate needles like I do. Going to the doctor is totally different. It does not feel the same," said Bryant.
Sierra's colors were all set up beforehand. At times she had as many as nine needles sending the colors to the skin, which is lightly perforated.
"You know sometimes people's condition of their skin is a little bit harder to work on. You know I can't do a portrait on the bottom of a foot no matter how much I wish I could," said Orrick.
Cece urges anybody interested in getting a tattoo to consult a professional.