We recently had a booth at the Peterborough Folk Festival selling prints and gear from the shop. We had loads of people asking what the flash sheets were all about, and so we realized just how many people were missing out on the joys of flash sheets and flash tattoos! So here's some info for anyone wondering:
Flash tattoos are pre-drawn designs that an artist will tattoo many times over. Often times, shops will have books of each individual artists designed flash for clients to choose from, or they'll have them displayed on the walls/ceilings of the shop. They show each artist's style and creativity, and it allows them to fine-tune designs. Designs originally done by famous tattooers like Bert Grimm, Sailor Jerry, and Lew Alberts (to name a few) have been heavily influential to todays traditional tattoo flash. Images like daggers, roses, pin ups, skulls, etc. are all ingrained in tattoo art history because of these artists and their designs that have been tattooed onto countless people all over the world for so many years.
Flash sheets are a great way for your artist to earn money for their art. Flash sheets are typically hand painted by the artist, and then prints are photocopied onto high quality paper for hanging or selling. They are mostly tattoo designs, so you can point at one you like and get it tatted straight away, no drawing needed. Anyone who's been in a tattoo shop before has seen a flash wall, which is made up of rows of flash sheets held up by wooden panels. This is a common practice in tattoo shops because it gives them a chance to collect art from different tattooers and display their own artists work as well!
So whether you're looking to get a sweet new tattoo or some aces art for your walls, flash is a great way to go. It'll never go out of style and it's a fantastic way to support your artist.