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World’s first tattoo by an industrial robot!

By Ideinn Posted on: 07 Nov 2016

An industrial robot commonly used in the automotive industry has what designers claim is the first time in history that a robot has been used as a tattoo machine.

The robot was programmed to tattoo a small spiral onto a man’s leg. Agreed, a spiral is not the most ambitious design that you could go for, but that’s a most perfectly accurate spiral that no human hands could possibly replicate the intricacy of.

The design team behind this idea is French Firm Appropriate Audiences, which seems to have somewhat of a penchant for tattoo robots.

In fact, back in 2014 they ‘hacked’ a 3D printer by adding a tattooist’s needle to it and have it ‘3D print’ tattoos onto skin.


In order to program the machine, they first took a 3D scan of his lower leg to analyse how deep the needle could penetrate the skin.

They also created a set of instructions that the robot could follow, and would penetrate the skin according to the pattern laid out in the instructions.

Before proceeding to use actual skin for the procedure, the team conducted health and safety checks on fake flesh and body parts before strapping in a member of the team to get tattooed.

This shows the possibility of how using the right software programming for robots can result in an almost exact replication of what a human being can do.



Just as 3D printers went from large, clandestine machines to consumer appliances, you could almost imagine having your own tattoo machine at home, tattooing anything you want onto your skin.

This could also be a solution for tattoo artists to get more intricate work done through a robot – it also means anyone with programming knowledge and a tattoo machine get become a ‘tattoo artist’. Who knows if people would want to pay for a robot doing all the work instead of an actual person.



This technology could also be used for temporary tattoos. Imagine going to clubs where an employee usually stamps your wrist or ties a bracelet – well now you could have these machines doing that job.

Human beings are being replaced in certain sectors by robots and its no news. Designs like these show the potential of robots to be used in areas of life we might have never thought before to be possible.



As one of the members of the design team said “Our research focused on this intimate relationship people will have with machines in the not so distant future, and this project is really pushing that to the limits”

Whether this technology has the potential to be used in real life applications is not very clear, but a step ahead to demonstrate the potential robots carry to reduce/eliminate human effort.



Have a potential idea? See how Ideinn design and help bring your innovation to market. Contact us at


Disclaimer: Ideinn Design is not a part of dezeen’s tattoo robot. This article is for knowledge sharing purpose.

Image/Video Courtesy: Dezeen


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