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This Tattoo Artist Can't Draw But She's Got Tons Of Clients Anyway

Tattoos are an incredibly personal thing. For some people, it's just about the meaning, but for others it's all about the art.

I'm part of the first group. I have one tattoo on the inside of my right forearm that says "Just write" in cursive. It's meant to remind myself to ignore my inner critic and just put pen to paper (or hands to keyboard).

It took me forever to decide on the design, because a tattoo is a commitment.

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I knew for sure that I didn't want something from a catalog. Not some pen and paper clipart or an empty quote.

That search for uniqueness is probably why this tattoo artist is so popular.

Helena Fernandes is a Brazilian tattoo artist who admits upfront that she can't draw.

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And yet, she's been able to build a thriving in home tattoo studio with a steady client base.

She called her business Malfeitona.

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The business works because of her brutal honesty about her own drawing skills.

Helena calls her offerings tatuagens peba, which literally means "ugly tattoos" in Portuguese.

And I won't try to argue against them being ugly.

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They really are, but that's also what makes them kind of cool.

Like, many artists can make you a generic pretty unicorn tattoo, but Helena's is special in its ugliness.

While I don't know if I'd want one, I can see the appeal.

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It's possible that there's something she could draw in her distinct lack of style that would be perfect for me.

Admittedly, I kind of love this shady Clippy one.

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You just know that was the expression on his face while he waited for you to screw something up in your Word doc.

Do her animals look like animals? Not really.

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But even in a shaky line drawing, she takes the time to make sure this cat is anatomically correct.

I can't decide which is my favorite.

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I kind of adore the monstrous badness of the Britney Spears one above, but this Charmander is pretty amazing too.

People choose her tattoos specifically because they like her style.

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It's uncommon to ask the tattoo artist to sign their work, but people actually request it of her.

They are proud to display her "ugly tattoos."

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Whatever you feel about her style, her actual technique is really strong.

The lines are crisp and dark.

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Any wonkiness is part of the style itself, rather than a sign of poor control of the tools.

Is this supposed to be Daffy Duck?

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Even if the likeness isn't clear, the attitude of this duck is loud and clear.

Her colors are also bright and crisp.

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There's no fuzziness to the lines.

Most of her work is done in her home, with scheduling done exclusively via email.

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When she does travel to other Brazilian cities, people rush to get their chance for an appointment.

How cute is this little one?

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It feels very retro, since we rarely refer to the World Wide Web anymore in daily life.

Also adorable? This tiny kitty.

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Why does it appear to have 12 legs? I don't care. It's cute.

She'd never imagined it to be her career.

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But not only does she have plenty of clients, she's also been able to expand to Malfeitona merchandise.

It's a great idea.


This way, even those who aren 't sure about a tattoo can enjoy her quirky style.

Y E S.

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I love this rendition of Miley Cyrus' "Wrecking Ball" music video.

Somehow, she's really captured the singer's essence and aura in one quirky tattoo.

There is something quite charming about these tattoos.

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It's really difficult to place my finger on it, but do you know what I mean?

And to be honest, they're not all bad.

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I see nothing ugly about this smiling planter and tropical plants tattoo! I'm about to hop on a plane and head to Brazil right now after looking at this.

It really makes you wonder if she does this on purpose.

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Who's to say this aesthetic that she's made for herself isn't done purposely?

I'm not mad about it, though!

Oh no, wait. I found my official favorite.

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I really can't argue with this incredibly monstrous Pope Rihanna. It's breathtaking.

Check out more of Helena's wacky, cool work: Facebook | Instagram