I made that sound fancy. I was out getting a tattoo. It is, thus far, the largest tattoo I have. And it's gorgeous! I'm so thrilled with it. Not for the first time, I'd like to recommend Living Colour Tattoo Studio. The artist this time was Alicia, and I absolutely adored my experience with her. I might just work with her for all my tattoos in the future. She's awesome fun and very talented. I will post photos of the tattoo for Friday's post.
It was a mammoth session. I went in at 10:00am and left 5:20pm or so. Apparently, I sat really well. Also, my skin behaved really well. Apparently, my pale skin and freckles led Alicia to believe that my skin would swell and get extremely red. It did not. It took the ink really well and didn't welt much at all. For that reason, I was able to get the whole tattoo finished in one sitting. Thank goodness. I didn't want multiple sittings.
The art is beautiful. I'm really thrilled with it. I got a little reflexive after the tattoo. I love tattoos. I think they're beautiful. I've always loved tattoos. Since I was a wee one, I've been thinking about getting tattoos. I joke that it's a hold-over from a past life (I was a woman of some import in bronze age Insular Europe, you see), much like my obsession with the bronze age and iron age cultures of the Atlantic Façade. Still, I've always loved tattoos and found them beautiful. Yesterday, it made me think about all the reasons why they're so dear to me. I've struck upon two main reasons.
The first, and paramount, reason is that they're beautiful to me. Of course, this does depend on the art in question. I've always been drawn to tattoos of cultural significance; traditional Polynesian tattoos on Polynesian people, for example. I'm also following with much love a young woman who is up north, reviving traditional Inuit tattoos. While I wouldn't get those tattoos for myself - those are not my cultural heritages - my tattoos all draw from my own cultural heritage done in the style of those cultures. I have a Pictish hare on my right chest just beneath the collarbone. This latest tattoo celebrates my Viking heritage, with direct iconographic links to early Viking relief carvings. My next three tattoos will celebrate my Insular Celtic heritage (when I save up enough to get those done). For me personally, cultural tattoos of this kind have always sparked my interest more than modern-style tattoos, though those are also beautiful. There are some hideous pieces, though. We've all seen them.
The second, less lovely reason, is reclaiming myself for myself. Most of you know by now that I am a survivor of sexual assault. Someone tried to wrest ownership of my own body from me. They weren't the only one. Men in suits are trying the same constantly; fighting to wrest ownership of all women's bodies from women. They're fighting to legislate away our independence, our right to decide for ourselves when and with whom we decide to have children, or even if. How and for what reason we might seek medical care is also under the gun. The autonomy of women everywhere, the right to our own lives and bodies is constantly under attack. My tattoos are a way of marking myself as claimed territory. I wear my flag for all to see. I am my own mistress. I will fight you if you try to take that from me. And then I will get a tattoo to celebrate my victory.
Related: it also helps to serve as a douche canoe repellent. So many butt-hurt articles from morons claiming tattooed women are broken/unattractive/attention whores/sluts/crazy/pick your favourite pejorative. Such articles advise that men of similar mind avoid tattooed women at all costs. So... good. Let me get a few more just to make sure those twists steer clear of me and make my life easier.
Anyway, those are a couple of reasons why tattoos are my thing. The first is really the greatest reason. But mostly, it's the past life thing. Definitely that.
Where do you stand? Tattoos? No tattoos? Why? It interests me.
Right, i have to go now.