My tattoos were incredibly important when I got them 15-20 years ago. I love them and have never regretted anything about them.
I think I made good choices that reflect my artistic vision, which is weird because I only dabbled a little in art at the time and didn’t think I had a vision or style.
My artist who has done all but my very first tattoo which I got when I was 17, influnced me more than anyone. Mind you, this is about my drawing style, not my painting style.I helped design them and actually drew some of them. All but one are abstract.
they are still very important but I don’t feel the need to have them showing all the time or talk about them all the time the way I have in the past. Sometimes I dress, not on purpose, and wear my hair down,such that you can’t see any of them. I feel like I have a secret! Also, I wonder if people would treat me differently if they could see them.
People argue about who is the “owner” of the tattoo, or who is responsible for it. Tattoo artists help with the design, or do it entirely. They draw it and ink it on mimeograph paper. They’re making original pen and ink drawings that they color on the skin. If your tattooer is a good artist, you’re not just getting random marks on you’re getting original, custom art. The tattoo artists get paid for their artwork, like any successful artist. spend A LOT of time on anything that’s big or intricate or both. They usually take a picture to put in their portfolio. So, you could argue the artist gets the credit.
But people who have gotten tattoos say that they helped design or gave picture to the artist. It’s their body, their blood, their time sitting uncomfortably. I had do a lot of that, sitting on a chair with your body turned so that you can twist your arm backwards. Try sitting like that for hours. For a tattoo I have on my right calf, that goes from the middle of my foot up to my knee, all the way around. i had to stand with my knee bent on a chair seat and the other leg standing with my foot next to the chair.I was leaning on the back of the chair. I was in that position for 4 hours (with short breaks to smoke pot) with blood running down my leg.that might not seem like much to some people and could see remarkable to some.
Either way, you can see why the person getting the tattoo could see it as *their* tattoo. I think there’s some truth in both.
There was a brief period of time that I was incarcerated. They took everything away from me, but I still had my tattoos. They were my art, clothing that was part of my body. I could run my fingers over them and feeling them slightly, here and there. I could run my eyes over them and tap into a thousand memories.
Some of them look like armor and they all feel like that. I put thousands into paying for them. That was when I was working so it was the sweat of my brow. My husband supports me now (wonderful man that he is), so I don’t feel like any of our household income is 100% mine.
Because I paid for all the tattoos with money I earned, when I was working, it is very important to me, sincebe because of that, they belong to me and me alone.
I love the permanency. Most people are scared of it. I want to stay true to myself. The tattoos force me to be.