The things you can do in one summer!!
It was my first day of work for Perfect Image in Wasaga Beach, Ontario. I was working counter at the tattoo shop and I only knew one person there, one of the weekend guys. I was introduced to everyone there, Tom (tattooist), Brian (tattooist), Ian (piercer), Tracy (counter) and last but not least, Julian (the beginning of my leg piece!) I started working 7 days a week and after talking with Julian on a daily basis, I found out that he was best friends with my previous boss (tattooist and owner of Body & Soul tattooing) I looked at his portfolio, talked to him about a few pieces that I had in mind, he seemed into doing my next piece of art. He told me that he always gives a free tattoo to everyone that works at Perfect Image, so I should pick one out.
After thinking about it, it came down to 2 different pieces. The first that came to mind was the savage cat, I've had this picture ever since it was printed in Savage and I've wanted it tattooed on me ever since. The second option was a huge tribal piece with an ankh in the centre on my lower stomach. I told Julian my two choices and he told me to go for the bigger one, which of coarse was the tribal piece. It was decided, we were going to do the tribal piece, now, we had to set a date. After talking about it for a few minutes, we agreed it would be best if we did it sometime when I had the morning off. After all this discussing and contemplating, we decided to do the tattoo the following Thursday morning. After clearing it with the boss, it was final.
The next couple of days flew by, I was so excited, I couldn't wait. I called Julian on Wednesday morning to confirm our appointment and that's when he blurted out "I had a dream about the cat, I want to do the cat!" I had no problem with this considering I had had the picture pinned up on my wall for quite some time and I wanted it to be just perfect, as soon as Julian spoke those words, I knew it would turn out great since he was excited to do it. That day was the beginning of my big ass leg piece.
So, I got to the shop, we got things rolling right away. After deciding on a size, Julian made the stencil. After agreeing on placement, I lay on the dentist chair in the window. I got the cat dead centre in the middle of my calf. I was a little nervous since a lot of people have told me that the back of the calf is a very sensitive area. To my surprise, it wasn't all that bad, it stung a little but nothing I couldn't handle. The whole thing only took about one hour. Everything turned out great, I started my shift soon after. My cat was healing great, me and Julian got to talking about extending my leg piece, by putting a big ass tree in the back round. A week had gone by and there were words in the air like tree, flowers, roots, bugs, etc. I came to work with a new tattoo magazine and I came across a dark tree along the same lines as the tree I had in mind for the back round of my cat tat.
After talking about it, Julian and I set another appointment. Now, just have to clear it with the boss and everything is final, Thursday night it is!! It's finally Thursday night; we're just cleaning and getting ready to close the store. Luckily Ian volunteered to stay with us until he was done so that he could close the shop when we were done. That's it, that was the last tattoo, time to close. I had a couple of smokes before we started, and it was time, it doesn't seem that long ago that I lay in that dentist chair last. Julian did the tree freehand, no stencil, just my leg.
I trusted him, we had talked about it for a while, at work and after just chilling out together, I knew he knew what I wanted, and I knew that if it wasn't as I had pictured, it would only be better. He used a 7 mag, with black ink watered down. The tree is a very light grey and it almost looks scratched on. (Did I mention I'm a black and grey queen?) The tree took a total of 2 ½ hours, not too bad, it covers a big area. There were a few spots that hurt a little more than others, but once again, nothing too bad. My leg looked like it had purples and reds in it but that faded within the days to come.
We then decided that we were going to put a trillium on my anklebone. At this point I thought I could handle anything. To be honest with you, it wasn't even that painful. I managed to deal with the pain without complaining to Julian. After we finished the flower, we decided that we had enough time to do the roots coming down the back of my ankle, on my Achilles Tendon!!
Now that on the other hand, that was what I call PAINFUL!!!! I can't believe that I went through with it, it wasn't too bad at first because he was doing it free hand. I knew what he was doing but I didn't know exactly how low he was going, and dammit he went low enough for me to practically cry in pain. The worst part is that barely any of the ink stayed and I have to go through it all over again when I get it touched up.
After that was almost all healed up, I decided to get the purple violet (the New Brunswick provincial flower) on the opposite anklebone. Piece of cake, now I'm still dreading the fact that I still have to get my Achilles tendon touched up again.
I still have some future plans for my leg. After getting the roots touched up, I'm planning on getting * La famille est comme un arbre abritant * written down the front of my leg and I still want to get some bugs and plants and roots done on my foot. I'm not really looking forward to the pain that's going to be involved in finishing my tattoo but I know it'll look awesome in the end!!!
So, if you can learn anything from this experience of mine, you can deal with the pain from a tattoo on you ankle, you can deal with the pain of a tattoo on your foot, you can even deal with the pain of a tattoo on your ankle bone but when it comes down to your Achilles tendon, it's the most painful thing I've ever felt.
submitted by: Anonymous
on: 24 Oct. 2003
in Tribal and Blackwork Tattoos