Tattoo #1 came at age 18. It's a daffodil on my left foot done with traditional black outlines, plus some of the crafty grey shading of Andy Ringo at Evolved Body Art on High Street in Columbus, Ohio. He'd done some of my cousin's tattoos and she recommended him. The significance of the daffodil is that it's the flower that represents the month of March - my birth month. It's also one of my favorite flowers as it is the best indicator of spring that nature has to offer.
Tattoo #2 came at age 19, the summer before my second year of college. The floral design was derived from one that I found on a vintage coffee mug that I bought at a thrift store. Very psychedelic inspired and colorful. It's about 5.5 inches long and stems (literally) from my left ankle to calf. The artist was A.J. McMillen (then) at Evolved Body Art on High Street. As I had only one previous tattoo experience to date, I figured at the time that I'd just stick with the same guy. Andy wasn't in the shop the day I went in, so I nervously let A.J. take a look at my idea and allowed him to produce a sketch. I liked what I saw, and I'm so glad I got to work with him.
The experiences with Andy and A.J. were like night and day. Andy was a quiet guy; didn't talk much and was very intent on his work. A.J., on the other hand, was outgoing, hilarious, and almost made me forget that I was even being persistently pricked with a needle. I would recommend A.J., who is now at High Street Tattoo (north location) to anyone, simply for the pleasant experience. Oh, and the artistry, too.
I don't think I really have a "style" I want to stick to with my tattoos. The only constant in my tattoo idea pool has been flowers and floral motifs. Anyone can do those, and I'm lucky that the two artists I've had thus far have been able to do them well.
I thought that I'd be getting tattoos left and right after I got my first two, but it's been slow coming. I've had difficulty deciding what to get, where to get them, and of course, coming up with the money to fund them. In the meantime I've had a lot of time to search for inspiration and I think it's safe to say I'm supplied with a notebook of ideas to last a lifetime. I've found inspiration in photographs, paintings, graphic art, graffiti, other people's tattoos, etc. My collection of ideas is abundant with flowers, loud colors, intricate details, and portraits. There's so much to look at, I can't seem to narrow it down to just ONE. Obviously I want more than one, but I can only get one at a time, and making that decision seems nearly impossible! The longer I wait, though, the more antsy and frustrated I get to just go do it. I need to sketch my ideas, take them to A.J., and put down the dollars. (I did get money for my birthday specifically for tattoos...)
So here's what I'm thinking.. feel free to let me know how you feel, but ultimately I'll go with my gut.
- the letter 'K' composed of detailed peacock feathers .. I don't know where, yet ..
- poppy and ranunculus flowers, among others, with an assortment of leaves and stems in a style similar to those I already have, crawling up my right leg
- an exact replica of my 13-year-old dog Sam's paw print that was taken before he was put to sleep, in a Victorian style frame OR with an old-timey banner bearing his name, just above my right knee
In the future I'd like to get some classic-style tattoos. I'd love to get a colorful, flowery sugar skull, some sort of powerful woman (I've found many images of Native American women in headdresses and I love them!), portraits of my mom and dad as children, a collaborative design with my sister Jen, a tattoo composed of lettering with regard to my family, the Hello Kitty that I've always had in the back of my mind, more and more and more and moooore flowers!, a design focused on an old lock & key (or maybe just the key) .. ideas ideas ideas.
Time to start sketching.