Many artists and experienced collectors will stress to folks who are new to tattoo collecting, that what ultimately matters is an artists healed work.
There has been much controversy over this in the tattoo industry, the never ending debate about whether its ethical or not to alter photos and if so, in what ways may they be altered.
As a fellow tattoo collector/client myself, I can say that it’s taken many years to finally get somewhat of a feel on how to decipher whether a photo has been dishonestly altered as well as whether or not a particular tattoo will still look good after it settles down for a few weeks (assuming the client cares for it well).
My thoughts on this are that artists and collectors should feel free to post dramatic/edited photos as much as they want in order to show off the pure artistry and design of the tattoo, but they should also balance this out by posting just as much content that is incredibly raw and honest and that displays the same tones/imperfections that you’d see on the flesh if you were to view the actual tattoo with your own two eyes in three dimensions/real life.
I put together a collage of 20 different tattoos that I thought healed really well and that I also think were photographed and represented very honestly. Hope you guys enjoy.