Japanese Tattoo Ink - In wash paintings, as in calligraphy, artists usually grind their ink stick (Japanese: Sumi) over an ink stone to obtain ink, but prepared inks are also available. Most ink sticks are made of pine or oil soot combined with animal glue (Japanese: Nikawa). An artist puts a few drops of water on an ink stone and grinds the ink stick in a circular motion until a smooth, grey ink of the desired concentration is made. Prepared inks are usually of much lower quality. Sumi is sometimes ornately decorated with landscapes or flowers in bas-relief; some are highlighted with gold.
We used this historical aspect to create the best tattoo pigments to achieve those effects on the skin.