How to Watermark Photos for Tattoos
It’s no secret that the importance of a social media presence in the tattoo industry is reaching new heights. If you’re participating as an artist and sharing your work, you should always take the time invest in yourself. That means using your logo (or social handle if you don’t have one) to watermark your intellectual property. Even if you don’t own your own shop, you are your own brand and always will be. Watermarking your tattoos is an easy way to gain exposure and share your work without it falling into the depths of the internet and losing your personal association.
Artists watermark their images in a variety of ways. To keep it clean and simple, a slightly transparent logo in the corner of your photo is a great option to include on all of your posts. This ensures your mark doesn’t steal attention from the main attraction; your work.
Follow along while we use our new Kingpin logo as an example using Photoshop and check out our video using Videoleap if you prefer using a mobile device.
If you are using Photoshop:
Step 1: Save Your Logo Watermark in All Black and All White
Whether using your phone, tablet, or computer; save an all white and an all black version of your logo in .png format. This creates a transparent background so your logo doesn’t carry over any solid backgrounds with it when you lay it on your image. For our Kingpin example, I’m using our white and gold .png version.
TIP: Check out this site to easily convert most image formats to .png if you need to save out your logo with a transparent background.
Step 2: Add Your Watermark Image to the Photo
Take your logo from your desktop and drag it onto the image you’d like to watermark. Once you drop your logo in, it will be bordered with an X over it. Your next step is to hit the shift button and drag any corner to make your logo fit where it is legible at 100% but not too big where it's distracting from your image.
Next, drag your watermark into a corner of the image. I always prefer the bottom right corner but, depending on the image, you may need to choose an alternate spot.
TIP: DO not place the watermark somewhere along the side of the tattoo. Putting it close to the tattoo will not enhance your brand and detracts from your art. Keep it a professional and clean afterthought.
Step 3: Lower the Opacity of Your Watermark Image
Lower the opacity of your logo. In your Layers menu, you will see the word “opacity". Bring that percentage down to 68%. I know many artists who keep the opacity up to it's fullest which is ok depending on how loud you want to be with your watermark. I'm a big fan of being a little more subtle.
So there you have it. Your watermark on your new badass tattoo is ready to post. Now keep it consistent, do it on every picture or every other picture. You'll see it will create a nice effect on your Instagram and other social channels.