The first documented professional tattooist in Britain was Sutherland Macdonald, who operated out of a salon in London beginning in 1894.[50] In Britain, tattooing was still largely associated with sailors[51] and the lower or even criminal class,[52] but by the 1870s had become fashionable among some members of the upper classes, including royalty,[3][53] and in its upmarket form it could be an expensive[54] and sometimes painful[55] process. A marked class division on the acceptability of the practice continued for some time in Britain.[56] Recently, a trend has arisen marketed as 'Stick and Poke' tattooing; primitive figures are permanently inscribed by the user himself after he obtains a 'DIY' kit containing needles, ink and a collection of suggestions.[57]
Mainstream art galleries hold exhibitions of both conventional and custom tattoo designs, such as Beyond Skin, at the Museum of Croydon.[5] Copyrighted tattoo designs that are mass-produced and sent to tattoo artists are known as "flash", a notable instance of industrial design.[6] Flash sheets are prominently displayed in many tattoo parlors for the purpose of providing both inspiration and ready-made tattoo images to customers.
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