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looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by EtaksOne on 11/29/10


What's goin on everyone..I'm relatively new to the tattoo world, was hoping that maybe I could get a little input to get my career going in the right direction. Been very active in the graff world the past 5 years, feel free to check out some of my work (google Etaks KGA and Fame KGA..recently changed my name this year).

Before labelling me a "scratcher" or bashing cause you hate to see new people in the industry, know that my head and hearts in the right place. After making a career based off art and custom apparel I've had atleast a hundred clients ask for me to draw up tattoos for them..so its lead to this. I'm about 6 months into this field and I've fell in love. I was fortunate enough to get an apprenticeship in NYC and learned that the douchebag egos that infect the graff world are just as prevalent here as well. Upon my fathers death I left the asshole that was mentoring me (in which I learned absolutely nothing) and have been in S. FL since. With about 10 new shops that have opened up here there's pretty stiff competition and theres no room for any apprenticeships here at the moment. So before you bash me for asking a few questions, you can go fuck yourself in advance. I'm trying, and we all started somewhere.

I want to know everything there is to know, from machine construction to dif materials involved and how the dif metals effect the machine..to how to tune machines, to how the dif lengths and styles of needles effect your outcome to how to make needles. Basically everything aside from the act of actually doing tattoos, are there any books or dvds that break down this type of stuff?

Second its time I move on from my beginner unimax setup. I have researched for days just on dif machines and have decided to run with either Aaron Cains, FK irons, or Pacos..or maybe go with rotaries n try the new stigma hyper..I have pretty much an open budget for this purchase but don't know the direction to go, but whatever I get it'll be my last purchase for a long time so I need to make it count. I know "all machines can be tuned to run great" but I need a good quality machine that will smooth everytime I pick it up.

Any other advice or tips would be greatly appreciated.

Peace



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RE:looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by fail on 11/30/10


heres some advice, telling people to go fuck themselfs in advance, while at the same time asking for a full online apprenticeship is a dumb fucking thing to do, scratcher.

what kind of response do you really think you would get from this ? All this info is already in the forum x1000 anyways, read up fool.


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RE:looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by EtaksOne on 11/30/10


I'm not asking anyone to give me advise and to go fuck themselves..Ive been on this forum for a while gathering info and I see anytime someone asks for help there's gotta be atleast 2-3 douchebags that have to chirp in with bullshit..similar to what your doing now, douche. To anyone else who for some reason got that misconstrude I sincerely apologize. And if I had seen someone post anything about the technical data behind machines I probly wouldn't have bothered with this post.


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RE:looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by Epicdermis on 11/30/10


People give you shit because, A) There is an awful lot of damage an untrained person can do with a tattoo machine, as far as diseases and scarring are concerned, which makes it harder for those of us who are legit to do our jobs and be seen as a legitimate business in the community. It leads to more draconian regulations, dumb laws, and the ever beloved cover-ups.

Reason B) why people get testy with you. There is a lot of oversaturation of people tattooing in this day and age, and only a small fraction of them can actually do decent work worth a damn. Most are in it for a quick buck, and the public is largely stupid as fuck. But here's a secret. Good artists dont care if other good artists take up the craft, as long as they have respect for it and are not a detriment to the community by doing so. In fact, not only do we not mind, we quite welcome new blood into the ranks as a driving force of creative evolution in our own work. Friendly competition betters everyone, and the more good artist that enter the fray, the less room for jerkoff hacks.

Reason C) why you will catch flak is because of your piss poor approach. Do you think you are the only one who had a shit "apprenticeship"? Do you think you're the only one who suffered loss in your family or got a street education? Fuck no! So leave that shit at the door and be a fucking man about it. You tell people to leave their egos and attitudes elsewhere, yet you come marching in the front door with yours at full clip.
Is it not egotistical to jeopardize people's health and the wellbeing of the industry you wish to be a part of just to further your own personal ambitions? Is it not egotistical to come on here and tell people what to do before asking for advice from them?

And do you really think Gaston would sell you a fucking machine so you can chew up peoples skin with it?

So, let's start again. You want to tattoo right? Want to learn everything there is to learn about it from the ground up? Well then first things first, put down your equipment, and forget what little you learned at the other place. There is a chance that you werent taught anything because you werent humble enough to pick up on the lessons right in front of you, but that may or may not be the case. For now let's assume that you just got a shit apprenticeship like so many of us did. It happens. Deal with it. If you really cared at all to learn the right way, you would search far and wide, and do whatever it took to get into a good studio. Move if you have to. Be persistent. Bust down doors. Hang around the studio and make yourself useful. We like that shit. It shows that you have heart and drive, and dont get defeated so easily. If a studio rejected your first request, and you got defeated right away, that aint a good sign dude. Because if you get shut down that easily, this is not the career path for you. This shit is damn hard man. And it doesnt really ever get any easier. It just changes the form of hardship you are confronted with on a daily basis.

And you cant teach yourself shit you dont fuckin' know. Scratching out of your house is going to give you a lot of bad habits, and take you down a lot of long hard roads that are ultimately unnecessary and detrimental in the long run. This is one business where your early attempts can and will haunt you throughout the rest of your career.

So put the starter kit down. Forget about which machines to get just yet. That is the last thing you should be worried about at this moment. What you need to do is find a studio with good artists, and get your foot in the door. BE PERSISTENT!!! Not annoying and punkish, but respectful and persistent. Make yourself an asset to them, and by proxy the industry, before you even entertain using a machine on someone. Trust me dude, you are not the first one to walk down this path. Far from it. At least you are coming up into it in an age where the artistry is so high, the craft is reasonably well accepted and information is so readily accessible. It's all so open now. I didnt have that when I was in your shoes, and I wasnt in sunny fucking Florida. I was in bumfuck Amish Country. I was rejected by studio after studio, and refused to quit. Moved twice, worked two jobs just to pay for a bullshit apprenticeship when it was finally offered to me( cost me thousands), and then when I left that fucking place after two and a half wasted years , I hit the bricks and got door after door slammed in my face. But I didnt quit, and I didnt scratch. I worked on my art, and volunteered my time with studios, humbled myself, and eventually got low man on totem pole status at the place I wanted most. And still it was hard. Nobody just handed me information. I had to be sly, observe, take notes, get tattooed, pay my dues and then some. But I wanted to learn so fucking bad, so I ate shit, bit my tongue, and did what it took to learn how to lay a clean line, put in solid color, soft shades, and tune a machine. I worked 30 to 40 hours a week minimum scrubbing tubes, making needles, trash duty, bathroom detail, and whatever other shit jobs needed done, while tattooing a zillion kanjis and baby momma names, and working another full-time job, and a part time side gig scrubbing dishes. Some weeks I got maybe 12 hours of sleep if I was lucky. No exaggeration. But nobody handed me shit, but I didnt quit, and I didnt fucking scratch. There is no excuse for doing it. If you cant tattoo out of a studio, dont do it. Period. I care not how much you think you want to tattoo. If you truly cared to do it right, you would eat shit and die like the majority of us did to get into a studio and learn from those who walked the path before you.

Coming on here insulting the people who busted their asses off and ate shit to learn this craft is about the laziest and most disrespectful fucking thing you could ever do, and it's absurd to ask us to assist you in scratching when you have no idea how much headache scratchers cause us on a daily basis. Half of my business is covering up the shit that the reject Juggalo down the street does out of his bedroom to get his crack money.

Maybe not the answer you wanted, but it hopefully gives you some insight as to why you are the one perceived as having the attitude, and why we take it as highly disrespectful to come off the way you just did.
And remember this homeslice, you are attempting to converse with people who have literally traversed the earth to better themselves in this business. People who eat, sleep, breath, shit, piss, and cum tattooing, 24/7/52. Many of us hardly see our families because of the 16 hour days we put into this. We have back problems, hand problems, and vision problems.

There is no easy way, no shortcuts, no magic machines. Just dedication, respect, hard work, tenacity, and humility. Once you get those qualities down pat, you will find what you are seeking.

Much to learn you have.


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RE:looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by Epicdermis on 11/30/10


Oh, and for the record, you cant toss a load on here with out giving a pearl necklace to a thread about machine specs and technical info. There's only about 4,000 on here at any given moment.

Perception is obviously not your strong suite either, which again does not bode well for your current career aspirations.

And before you spout off at the mouth calling people douches and such, make sure they arent 300 pound bikers who live in Florida first. You've already given anyone who cares to more than enough information to find you. The tattoo community is a small world homey G, and respect and honor will take you a lot farther in it than a bullshit attitude and brash mouth.

Werd.


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RE:looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by EtaksOne on 11/30/10


first off id like to thank you for your response, while it might not be the one i would have liked i atleast respect the fact you gave me a heartfelt answer. (as i said before, you should write a fuckin book!)

im fortunate enough to have friends in the industry, i wont drop names because they are the ones who will be getting my machines for me..but they have taught me enough to know how to properly and santarily give someone a tattoo. i only use the same needle twice..(im joking, relax a little bit, i use it atleast 3 times ;) ) they assured me a place as an apprentice within the next few months theres just not space as of now. i do not "scratch"..unlike many tattoo artists im an artist first, this is a way for me to expand my art. as far as travelling i live in brooklyn, and im still down here for the sole fact of my friends in the industry that are willing to help me out (and the cold pretty much sucks)..every tattoo ive given has been through word of mouth because they saw i can give good clean work. and i didnt give one until i was fully confident i could do a good job. im not some jerkoff that saw la ink and decided he wanted to be a tattoo artist..in that respect i can completelly understand the criticism one would get.

if ive insulted anyone i apologize. but if you can see the only things i asked about were A - anything link that might have info related to technical data and everything behind the machines themselves and B - opinions as to which of the 4 machines i listed would be good choice for the next few years. not asking how to tattoo, just wanted to do some homework, but thats obviously a bad thing in your eyes.

and i honestly dont know why the fuck you complain about doing cover ups, if the guy who originally did the work right the first time you wouldnt have any of their business in the first place, they would have went back to them. be happy you made a buck.

my ego is checked and im one of the most humble people youll ever meet, but try and disrespect me and ill kick you in your fucking mouth. too many people act because theyre good at something that they can degrade the people that ask for their guidance as if that makes them god. i know you guys are trying to keep certain things on the hush n hush so not every asshole out there tries to do tattoos, but gimme a fuckin break. if you ask a mechanic what model intake would be good for your car are they going to give you a long lecture on why they shouldnt tell you that info? no. or if you ask a doctor what type of medicine you should be taking for whatever and why? no. in just about every profession people are glad to share what they know. so why the fuck is it any different with tattoos? are you that afraid people will realize that your probly not that special? be innovative, be unique, and dead the egos. ill get my info regardless, but the way some of you people look at shit is pathetic.


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RE:looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by EtaksOne on 11/30/10


sorry if i came off a little harsh at the end..but in the words of the great Peter Griffin..."it really grinds my gears".

im not in it for the quick buck..nor am i going to not tattoo out of my house just because its frowned upon or some guy on the net said i shouldnt. if there currently was a shop capable of fitting me in, id love to do it there..but thats not the case at the moment. all im trying to do is better my work, and what better way then to know what it is your holding and how it works?

if the few friends i have that are in professional shops told me to stop what i was doing...i would. but they atleast see my work, and know im doing it in a clean enviroment. regardless...sorry if i came off a little rude.


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RE:looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by rudeboy on 11/30/10


bows at Epicdermis..i couldnt have said it any fucking better mate! bravo!! end of the line we have all earned our stripes go earn yours and come back and ask again in a decent manour, and you might get a better response dude, theres so much i want to say but Epicdermis has hit the nail right on the fucking head


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RE:looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by travelingtom on 11/30/10


way to go epic, not much else to add!!!!


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RE:looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by smokin on 11/30/10


bow to the true jedi, epicdermis. This industry may be seen as having an ego attitude but that is because every other day, some tool is ready to climb on your corpse to better themselves, not the industry !


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RE:looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by Epicdermis on 11/30/10


Why can't you just wait until you get into that studio in a few short months to continue tattooing? For fucks sake man.

Seriously. Your friends may not care, but the health inspector does, and the insurance provider of your home sure does. And it would serve our industry better if you waited to do it legitimately.
It's not just about using new needles, it's about CCP, and BBP control. It's about learning the ropes of how a legit business operates. It's about the hustle, and the heart of this craft.
It is a craft too by the way, not an art. If you fuck up a painting, you can paint over it, or toss it and get a new canvas. There are no rules in art. If you wanted to jiz all over a painting you did and sprinkle glitter on it, you can do that. But tattooing has rules. Hard set rules. It has protocol that does not waver, whether you're tattooing a kanji on an ankle or a whole backpiece of Grimmace buttfucking the Hamburgler. That protocol is unforgiving if you do not adhere to it, and your client and the rest of the tattoo community will suffer for it. The art is in the design of the piece, but the application is pure craft, and you have to respect the craftsman ethos if you are to be successful. All good artists come to that conclusion in this business.

Tattooing isn't just about putting art on people and understanding your machines. It's also about responsibly being in business for yourself, and representing an entire community. And if you are to do all of those things correctly with as little headache and heartache as possible along the way, it's best to do it in a structured learning environment with proper oversight and guiding hands to help ease you along. If you know that you have that opportunity in the very near future, why not just wait a bit and hone your art skills in the meantime, out of respect for the community you wish to be a part of?

As for the cover-ups and why I hate them, there are many reasons. Here's but a few:
1. I would have done the work right the first time for not much more money.
2. There is a really good chance that the client now has hep.
3. I have to look at some mangled, nasty looking shitty "artwork" while I figure out how to cover it up. I don't know about you, but I hate looking at shitty tattoos.
4. It's usually more hassle than what it's worth, and much more limiting in terms of creative options. And often the skin is chewed up and scarred pretty badly, and even though the guy can't seem to lay a line cleanly to save his life, he somehow mannages to get those wobbly, blown out bitches in there as dark as humanly possible.
5. The client is usually a cheapskate bastard who thought I was too expensive the first time, and really doesn't want to pay any more than they have to to get their piece looking good.
6. I'd much rather be creating artwork free of limitations on blank skin any day.
7. I hate Juggalos, perhaps even more than I hate brian

So, when you've actually gotten some real years under your belt in this craft, and your starring down the barrel of your millionth or so cover-up, you tell me how much you like doing them. Until then, you and your defiant, disrespecting attitude can blow me and everyone else on here who strives to do this shit right without cutting corners.

We may have attitudes about certain things, but they are hard earned and rooted in a wisdom you just don't possess yet. Maybe someday you will.

Maybe.


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RE:looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by stephen griffin on 11/30/10


There goes my idea for a hamburgelar being buggered backpiece. Hey, say that 5 times fast.


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RE:looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by Stephen Griffin on 11/30/10


Wow, those 2 posts above mine are truly amazing. I'm trying to figure out what kind of inbred asshole would think that it's BAD advice to tell someone just learning to tattoo to wait until they get SOME sort of proper instruction. And telling them to just torrent the books! Why? So the artist who put their hard work and time into it (and I would assume someone that the person reading the book respects, otherwise why read it?) can get NOTHING for it? Real cool advice, both of you. So there's guys in their garage that are cleaner than shops, huh? It might be true, but it's an exception to the rule, for sure. I run a private studio. All by myself. It's A LOT of work. I didn't see anyone trying to "scare" anybody. Anyone who doesn't understand the difference between a scare tactic and taking what we do seriously is in desperate need of a new line of work. All I got from both of your posts was "yeah, fuck 'em all. just do it". That's real sound advice. I'd like to see that instructional dvd. "Hey kids, just learn how your machine works and use disposables. Oh, and when you get a chance, burn every bridge you come across by taking shortcuts and throwing disses to those that came before you". Great. I'm in the position of being neither an old school artist or a beginner. I've been at this since '96, and one of the most important things I've learned is RESPECT. Respect for people, for their skin they allow me to work on, for art and the artists I learned from, and most importantly respect for myself. If you don't respect yourself enough to learn from someone who's done this before then you're doomed from the start. And you don't have to be apprenticed, obviously. But you should have some sort of hands on training from someone with some skill, knowledge, and hopefully some morals. This guy's not gonna listen, just like no body else listens. But saying "scratchers" tattoo better than people in shops who have been doing this their whole life is pretty stupid to say. It's like Epic said, real artists are not threatened by new people. I agree with that 100%. What I don't understand is how the 2 people above me sense any "threat" from this guy. It's not a "threat" it's a concern that yet ANOTHER person who wants to cut corners and do things the quick and easy way wants to jump into tattooing. I have plenty of clientele. I have confidence in my art. I welcome a new generation of artists to come in and can't wait to see what happens next in tattooing. But damn, if you're gonna do something, DO IT RIGHT. You'll be happier and so will your clients. And please, If you're gonna get books and dvds (not a replacement for hands on training, by the way) please do the right thing and pay the people who made the thing. You never know, if you end up doing this for a living you might end up at a convention one day getting tattooed or having a drink with whoever wrote that book. You might even find out that they are a cool person with a wealth of knowledge. Unless you could care less about cosmic karma or any of that, which I'm assuming the people about to unleash bullshit on me don't.


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RE:looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by TattooNOW Gabe on 11/30/10


god I hate the internet. I am usually immune to this conversation but I really really really want to jab myself in the eye right now. I have nothing more to offer this conversation right now. Well, except I am going to be launching learntotattoonow.com pretty soon with real solid advice such as epis and others. But right now, I feel overwhelmed by the dumbness. I guess inherently the more of a crowd you attract, scientifically the more assholes you bring around. Excuse me, that was rude. more irresponsible loudmouths I meant to say. wheres my goddamn medicine?


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RE:looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by Epicdermis on 11/30/10


Oh Gabe, are you getting flustered by dipshittery homey? It happens dude. I was just like you not so long ago( about 15 minutes ago to be precise). But a wise man once told me that there will always be dipshittery in the lawless land of the world wide interwebs, where people are free to be themselves in all of their moronic glory, and that reacting to it just fuels the fire. And do you know who that wise man was. I will give you a clue. His name began with a G and rhymed with Abe.


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RE:looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by Epicdermis on 11/30/10


Even in this, the information age, the blind still lead the blind it seems, as evidenced here by this Paul fella and his fucktarded brother Smack, who apparently just mainlined his namesake right before drooling all over the keyboard. hahahahahahahahahahahahahaha Shut the fuck up.

So I will say this and be done with it. To the original poster of this discussion;

Look up your favorite artists, the ones you truly admire most in this business, Nick perhaps, and see what they have to say about breaking into the business the right way. It is true that a lot of artists started out on their own, but the truly successful ones all say the same thing, APPRENTICESHIP is the way to go, and that the ones who bypassed this process did so at great expense to themselves and their clients, and lost a lot of time along the way.

The learning process is always trial and error, but with an legitimate apprenticeship and studio environment you get that trial and error guided and supervised and any risks are minimized and easily fixed or prevented altogether.

There are two paths to the promised land. One is unnecessarily long, lonely, and dangerous, and one is populated with wise guides to help you along faster and easier, and more honorably. One road has a lot of guys named Smack and brian along the way who talk out of their asses and enjoy the company of other fuckups like themselves. The other has people like Nick and Gabe and myself, who are experienced and willing guides if you are perceptive and receptive and willing to carry your weight and do things properly.

You can look up my work. You can obviously look up Nick's work. I dont know if Paul or Smack can say the same about theirs, but at the end of the day, the proof is in the pudding so to speak, and it's up to you what kind of artist you want to be, and where you want to position yourself within the tattooing community.

Praise Allah


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RE:looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by EtaksOne on 11/30/10


At Epic thank you for your insight, whether its negative or not..but to everyone trying to say I'm trying to cut corners and blah blah blah...seriously? how the FUCK am I trying to cut corners by asking about the make up behind machines? Can you fucks not read? I'm not asking any of you how to tattoo, just asking if you guys can point me in the right direction as far as to what books go into the technical data..holy fuck.

@paul and the other guy, thank you..glad to see this "craft" hasn't gone to everyone's head.

Like said..I'm just tryin to do my homework, not cut corners or expect some overnight transformation..just learn as much as I can in my off time, guess that's a bad thing.


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RE:looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by Buddha on 11/30/10


@EtaksOne Honestly if you are "in love" and this is your dream, 6 months is absolutely nothing in the grand scheme of things. If you can't wait then you need to stop and think if this really is the right career choice because your impulsiveness could affect your tattoo's in a negative way.

As I'm sure you've realised, this forum is one of the few where genuine information isn't kept a closely guarded secret so my advice is to: bide your time, check your ego, turn any hostility off, visit daily, read read read & draw draw draw until the 6 months passes and you can learn from your chosen mentor mentor.


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RE:looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by Barrett A Nevins aka legion666 on 11/30/10


Can I get an Amen and a standing ovation for Epic...Well put man...I HATE juggalos/juggahos as well.


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RE:looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by EtaksOne on 11/30/10


@buddha..I will try, thank you.

I mean no disrespect to any of you and am sorry if i have. but i will not degrade myself to anyone or be disrespected..at the end of the day no man is better then the next. Every tattoo I do I stay within my limitations and won't do anything I feel I would fuck up.

@epic you do have some very good work sir..I agree with what your saying for the most part but as I've stated 10 times before, I'm not looking for an overnight magic fix, just to do my homework on the machines.


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RE:looking for advice..just starting out, leave your egos on the other pages.

Posted by EtaksOne on 11/30/10


@buddha..I will try, thank you.

I mean no disrespect to any of you and am sorry if i have. but i will not degrade myself to anyone or be disrespected..at the end of the day no man is better then the next. Every tattoo I do I stay within my limitations and won't do anything I feel I would fuck up.

@epic you do have some very good work sir..I agree with what your saying for the most part but as I've stated 10 times before, I'm not looking for an overnight magic fix, just to do my homework on the machines.


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