Ink Failure

Up until 2006, you could look at me while at work and never know that I had a tattoo. Of course, at that time, I had eight tattoos. The only one that was ever visible was the one on the back of my neck and only then if I wore a shirt without a collar. It was at that point that I got a tattoo on each of my forearms.

This quote comes from a discussion on a role playing forum (Karl in response to a post by Bavix that was in turn a response to a post by Al Beddow). This statement pretty much defines my first 30 years of life. Of course, there are nuances to the statement that no one ever considers. There are plenty of ways to drop a hammer, not all of them nice for the person doing the dropping.

This one is an adaptation from a painting. I don't remember the artist. I'm told it's actually a poet who also painted scenes inspired by his poetry. In this case it was a gorgeous painting of a lion that I could not afford to buy. The righteous must be bold like a lion was written at the bottom. A modified the simile and here it is on my left arm.

The writing looks kind of odd on its own, so I decided to frame each saying. I had the below done in 2007. I lost my job the following year and decided that I would have the right arm finished once I had a full time job again.

The problem I'm running into now is finding a decent artist! I think the above knotwork is only okay. Certainly the artist who did my earlier work (Spider from Dreamcatcher in Columbia, MO) is far superior. My next design includes fire and it's shocking just how few artists can actually draw fire that doesn't look cartoony. The need for skill is exacerbated by the general attitude of tattoo businesses. They aren't businesses, they're artists who aren't good at doing anything else. Store hours are dependent on whether they feel like working when they wake up that morning/afternoon. 3/4 of them will try and cheat you. And unless you're a hot chick, they will approach you about a possible business transaction only if they feel like it. If there's a conversation about the crackwhore one of them fucked last night, you might be in for a long wait.

I have 11 total tattoos now and I'm about to get my 12th. It's hard enough coping with the not so subtle derision for being an office worker who gets tattoos (I started this before it was popular, assholes).  If you don't have sleeves, neck work, and a piercing through some non-standard body element, you're just a poser. Fine, I'll cope with that. I just want my tattoo. But when you try to rack up the bill because you think you're rebelling against the establishment, it insults me. Poor girls ahead of me were going to be charged $300 for lettering. FOR LETTERING! Are you crazy? I can see starting at $100. They come back at $50. You guys end up somewhere in between. But $300? For "Friendship"? You're out of your damn mind.

I really want a new tattoo, but the only artist I still trust is 1400 miles west of here. :(