Tattoo Stories 2 – Oni Mask, chest piece.

So anyone who has been reading my stuff would realise that I’m into tattoos. I’ve often said that if I had the time and the money, I’d be getting tattooed. So this story is about my oni mask that I had tattooed on my chest.

I have travelled quite a bit, and in times gone by it was not unusual for me to plan a trip, and to make sure that getting tattooed in some place was on the agenda. This time I was in Chicago. The windy city. I found a shop called Deluxe Tattoo. Often I would do a bit of research and have a look at artist profiles and book ahead to confirm my spot. It just happens, by coincidence that this is the shop that Hannah Atchison works out of – she was featured as one of the artists in LA Ink. She mentioned in the show that she was from Chi town. I used to watch this show when I was in Australia. I knew all the people on the show who were tattooing, but at the time I never imagined that I could end up in Chicago getting tattooed.

So she did not tattoo me, and that’s not why I was there, but it was a bit surreal to be getting tattoed and look over, and there she was, in the flesh only 15 ft from where I was getting inked. But this story isn’t about her.

I rode the El train from down town to the leafy northern suburb to where the shop is located. I think I had to change trains in there somewhere. The lines are all colour coded like the ‘red line’, and the ‘blue line’. i’m sure at some point I had to go from an underground subway to an elevated train line, so that was an interesting experience – just finding my way out of one and onto another.

But this story has a kind of a precursor. I had been tattooed some time before this and got two birds on my chest. If you look closely you can see the bird embedded in the tattoo. I have a sort of matching left one and a right one. These are some of my favourite tattoos, because one represents a kind of goodness (angelic?) and one is badness (devilish?), because I can be both! Ok, enough symbolic bullshit I know you really don’t care. Oni mask tattoo (2)

So the birds were done in Tucson AZ. It was eassssssy tattooing. I think maybe each one took an hour or something. Being kind of high up on the chest, they were not too painful, and the tattooist used a sort of noiseless tattoo gun. So in a way, that set me up for some over-confidence when it came to pain thresholds etc. Now, when it comes to tattooing, I’ve sat for a LOT of hours. Perhaps not like some of the ink-freaks out there but I’ve done many hours. It sucks. It hurts. I got a piece on my lower torso/hip (my first), and that was extreme pain.

So – now we come to the oni mask on my chest. I got it stenciled out, etc, all good. Lie down on the tattooist table, and ready, here we go. JESUS FUCKING CHRIST THIS IS PAINFULL. No, I mean like really, like we are talking the uppermost pain bracket there is. Within seconds of the first line going down, I almost quit. Yes, me who has done many  many hours, almost quit. I ALMOST picked up my handbag and heels, and sashayed out of there, like a big girl. But I didn’t. And while I’m at it, chicks are tough ok, they get tattooed too. No disrespect.

I gritted my teeth, made funny faces, tried not to freak out, and braced every damn time that needle was on the skin. I couldn’t believe it. Not sure if it was the time since being tattooed, the location (anywhere on the torso is worse), or that it was on the left side (there is a difference in sensation apparently). Either way it took a lot to stick with it.

After about an hour or more, I got a break. I remember going to the bathroom and needing to hold on to the rail, I was feeling rather seasick. The floor was no longer horizontal and flat, it seemed to roll like the deck of a large boat on a heavy swell.

Anyway, I got through it, and I’m glad I did. that’s the thing about tattooing, once its done, it doesn’t wash off. More to come, readers….

Art Supplies

So I stopped in at Walmart this morning. I bought some sharpie pens, pencils and erasers and a sketch pad. I will blog some of the stuff that I come up with.

I’ve been thinking about how to do more with less – I’m sure you can create a lot of detail with simple lines of black sharpie on white paper. Sometimes, for a very accurate depiction, all you really need are some well defined lines. I’m also thinking about the art type where it is all black and all white – with solids in shaded areas (not many lines). It’s amazing how much detail you can get in a depiction like that. Sometimes I’ve seen this in spray paint type artworks.

Stay tuned, readers.

Art supplies

 

Tattoo Stories 1

Hi readers, I would like to share some experience that I’ve had with getting tattoos/wearing tattoos etc.

I figured I could feature one of my tattoos at a time, and that would make for some interesting reading – if you are into that.

So this particular one, the Japanese Oni mask, was done in Grande Prairie, Alberta. I’ve travelled a lot, and been tattooed in lots of places. I just happened to be living near that part of the world when I got this one done. It’s one of my favourites for sure.

It took a long time, probably longer than it should have, and yes, it hurt like a son-of-a-bitch, but this is getting tattooed, not having a picnic.

So do I regret getting tattooed? No fking way. I love being tattooed. I’ve always said, that if I had the time, and money, I’d be getting tattooed. I have to admit though, the last one I got done – the chest piece (done in Chicago) scared the shit out of me in terms of how much that one hurt. But anyway, it only hurts when the needle is on, the art stays with you forever!

 

My Wonderfully Imperfect Life

Hi readers, thanks for joining me. So its a new day, full of new opportunities and all that shit. But lets be honest. It’s not perfect, but that’s ok.

So this morning I started my day with a sort of argument with T bird. Mostly to do with her getting the attention that she needs and me being sort of distant/seemingly uninterested and spending my energy elsewhere. No doubt this has been a fairly constant theme, so the discussion gets into raised voices, fuck this and fuck you, and we might as well get divorced if I can’t exercise my ability to be the full me. Quite imperfect but that’s ok.

The dishes are full of dirty plates and cups. Partly because its a weekend and partly because no one wants to be the first to put their hand up to do it, but that’s ok we’ll get it done later.

The back yard is a melted mess of dog shit, ice and snow. Having two dogs crapping for 3 months of sub freezing weather allows a kind of accumulation. Quite imperfect. I’m not too worried about it because the warmer weather and wet conditions allow things to decompose in a natural way, and I promise its not as bad as you imagine. There’s water everywhere. We are in that freeze/thaw time when it goes from water to ice rink and back to water.

Imperfect 1

The garden hose is frozen in the icy water. An interesting effect.

Imperfect 2

So I thought it might be time for a sketch. Its imperfect too, but what the fk? This is sort of how I imagine myself looking with the laptop and morning coffee. Imperfect.

Imperfect sketch

The bananas I photo-blogged yesterday are still green, by the way.

Bananas are still green

But don’t worry, I’m grateful. I have lots to be thankful for. This is a wonderfully imperfect life!