Your Kanji Sucks - Kanji Tattoos Gone Bad
Your tattoo is going to be around for a very long time so unless want to pay ten times the cost of the original tattoo to have it removed it is crucial you consult someone who is fluent in both languages.
Although bad tattoos can be modified to become a completely new tattoo and many tattoo artists have even become experts at effectively turning badly drawn tattoos done by inexperienced tattoo artists or 'scratchers' into works of art.
Not all tattoos can be modified and will require a complete cover-up or painful removal.
Prime examples are where English or Asian character tattoos are poorly translated, drawn or improperly spelled. What is known as Engrish or errors often seen on menus, restaurant signs, and billboards in Asia, or bad English-to-Japanese or Chinese translations in other words.
According to James Morel, CEO who runs Tattoff Tattoo Removal in Beverly Hills, California, who recently stated It seems to be a current in the tattoo studios ... where it gets passed on and passed on, and the translations get more obscure until you’re not even putting on your skin what you thought you were, and is seeing a flood of people asking for their kanji tattoos to be removed because of mistranslations.
His business averages between seven and nine clients a week seeking to get an Asian-language tattoos removed.
Of those, he said, five or six typically complain that their tattoo was mistranslated or didn’t say what they originally thought it did. Many got their tattoos in the mid-‘90s and tired of the fad, he said.
There was a story circulating recently about a guy called Sakai who was (apparently!) an award-winning tattoo artist. According to Sakai he was tired of seeing sacred Japanese words, symbols of his heritage, inked on random white people. So he used their blissful ignorance to make an everlasting statement. Any time a customer came to Sakai’s home studio wanting a Japanese kanji tattooed on them, he modified it into a profane word or phrase.