Sunday, July 11, 2010

2nd of Many

1I don't know if I've mentioned it here. In fact I don't think I have. But in soul-searching for some mid-to-late life career I could do that would be interesting, challenging, & something that would use my talents, I lit on becoming a tattoo artist.

2Last month I began a 2-yr odyssey of apprenticeship under Boyd Reid. Right now we're working out of a little shop in Pigeon Forge, TN.

Up until now, I've had only the one, little ice-cream cone tattoo. As one moves through apprenticeship, normally one acquires more tattoos. My husband very sensitively stated, "You're gonna become just another inked-up freak." Well the freak label fits but... 3I really didn't want to end up with an odd conglomeration of relatively unrelated tattoos here, there and everywhere. And, I find that as I talk to people & tell them what I'm doing, their first response is to look me over & notice that I don't have any visible tattoos... and then not believe me!

4What to do? I've designed a 1/2-sleeve tattoo of birth flowers of all 7 of my living kids, and 5 lost babies. An even dozen of colorful flowers, each with a little banner with the child's name. Each flower can be inked by a different artist, yet when finished, the piece will be one comprehensive work of art.

I want to have a modification done around my ice cream cone... a little white, lavender & light-blue cloud of marshmallow fluff. And then a flaming heart on the left breast in about the same size. 5But meanwhile, Boyd said, "Lets get some ink on you out where people can see it."

The pictures on the blog today are the progression of the first flower and centerpiece of the sleeve, a Stargazer Lily. This tattoo took longer to apply than the amount of time I've spent in my longest 6labor out 7 live births & 1, 19.5-week loss (3hrs was the longest). And, it's every bit as permanent. The bottom petal is purposely left undone so we can add the "Veronica" banner when the next flower down is inked, so the upper petals of that flower can overlap the banner.

7Pics are clickable for full-size versions. Beginning at the top we have:

  • 1. The picture of the lily, modified to be mirrored and tilted to the angle I needed it on my arm
  • 2. Boyd's hand-drawn stencil of the lily, on my arm
  • 3. Beginning the work. Me and my tattoo "master."
  • 4. The lily, about 1/3 completed
  • 5. Manic Boyd, madly tattooing
  • 6. The lily, completed, not dressed & not done bleeding
  • 7. Composite view (front and side)
  • 8. Finished, dressed, & in sunlight (which highlights the colors)

    He did this very large, original art tattoo in about 4 hours with very little lasting skin trauma. If you're ever in Pigeon Forge, you can stop in Ink Dimensions at Traffic Light 7 (Old Mill Avenue) and have Boyd Reid apply excellent, permanent art to you!

    ~J-ME~ said...

    I have to say its absolutely georgeous. He's art is outstanding! We don't have any good tattoo artist around here. So sadly I'm ink-less, but always looking for someone's art I like and would consider seeing on myself. I have family that live in TN so who knows you may see me in the future. Thanks for sharing this!

    Lisa Gifford Mueller said...

    Love it! And you will have a beautiful colleciton of art you will cherish forever. I can't wait for you to complete your apprenticeship so you can put your stamp on me!

    Kate said...

    HAHA! This post made me laugh because my husband also said I was on the verge of becoming a "circus freak" when I started looking into getting my 3rd tattoo... my 3rd very small tattoo.

    Found you via by the way! Hi! Nice to meetcha!