A body artist is a person who decorates the human body using a number of different methods. Body artists may create tattoos, body piercings, branded art, painted designs or permanent makeup. A body artist may even perform body shaping. Some body artists specialize in creating a single type of body art, while others provide a wider variety of services.
Often, a person becomes a body artist because he has natural artistic talent and an interest in one or more types of body art. Some body artists may be self-trained, but many seek training through art classes or one-on-one training with experienced artists. Besides having natural talent, a body artist must have steady hands and the ability to visualize the result his client wants.
One of the most common type of body artist is a person who creates tattoos. This involves permanently marking the body with ink. Permanent makeup artists mark the body permanently as well. Regular tattooing is typically used to create designs or artwork on the body, however, while permanent makeup tattoos the body with accents of color on the lips, eyelids, and eyebrows. The word permanent is a bit misleading, as permanent body makeup typically lasts for several years, not indefinitely. On the other hand, tattoos may fade, but they tend to be far more permanent than permanent makeup.
Some body artists specialize in body piercing, which involves using a sharp tool to pierce a part of the body, so a client can wear jewelry there. Most people get pierced through their earlobes or ear cartilage, but others opt for piercings in their lips, tongues, and belly buttons. Some people even get pierced in their nipples and genital area.
There are some body artists who create brands by using a hot iron to sear a pattern or shape into the skin. Some body artists focus on scarification by using a sharpened instrument to cut the skin and produce a raised scar in a particular design. Scarification aims to produce keloids, which are very thick, raised scars. They may be easier to produce in individuals who have darker skin tones. Less frequently, chemicals may be used to produce scarring.
A body artist may also help a client with body shaping, which may involve the use of corsets and other devices to make the body fit a desired form. Some artists insert objects, such as marbles, under the skin to achieve a desired look. In some cases, metal spikes are even driven into a client’s skull. Body artists may also pierce the skin and insert hooks, which makes it possible for clients to hang or be suspended from the hooks.