The Legacy of My Name.
Thank you for reading. Of all the experiences listed, mine will be a bit different than most as I have found it more interesting to write about the thought process from tattoo consideration to completion. Working in the Computer Industry, and seeing a lot of my co-workers with tattoos, and seeing how a tattoo has entered the mainstream. I found this unique from a sociology standpoint. Shows like Miami Ink seemed to usher in greater awareness and acceptance of a tattoo in society today. Like the artwork, the story about why people get a tattoo is interesting.
The permanence of a tattoo meant that my choice had to be something that would endure for the rest of my lifetime. This got me thinking of what is really permanent. Your feelings, relationships, interests, hobbies, location, status, and job can change. Your beliefs, and religion are presumed permanent. As I am active in my church community, I also did research, and at such timing an issue of Envoy provided some well-done research and considerations as to if a tattoo or body modification is in keeping with the church teachings. After all, you are charged with the task of the respectful care of one's body. Thoughts were that as a creation of God, would a tattoo change this? The consideration of this would mean that any symbol would not be of a fashion, style or artistic trend, which could change over time. I see for example the individual who thought getting the Grim Reaper on their forearm would be an enduring interest. I have not been too keen with wearing a shirt that is presenting a logo of a designer, or one that has a popular saying or thought. It is this plain nature that I find timeless. I finally decided to get a tattoo for my 39th birthday. Which was a day after I sky dived with some friends. The most enduring thing that one has is their name. Since God calls us each by name, my name was to be the selection for my tattoo. I decided that this tattoo is to be unique, and no one would have the same type as no one has my same handwriting or signature. Taking a Sharpie, and a post-it notepad I began writing my name to make a stencil. My father has always stated that you should take pride in your name, and as such it should be readable. Others claim my handwriting has always been toward the messy side, however I can read it! Taking care, I carefully wrote out my first name, watching for the loops in the letters, the spacing, the angles, and the size. Making sure it has the character of my signature. Not rushed or artificial, but natural. After about the 20th time I found the candidate for the stencil. The idea of a signature that was to be permanent tends to influence ones handwriting.
After talking with friends, and getting some history and recommendations one place seemed to be the resounding favorite. Atomic-Tattoo in Austin, Texas has a reputation for excellence, and care. The shop I visited was impeccably clean, well lit, and smelled of hospital clean. I waited about an hour and a half because there were two girls ahead of me, and they could not tolerate the tattoo process well. Seeing the flash art on the walls and varied as the collection was, I was more confident my choice was the right one, as themes of dragons, wizards, fairies, skulls, fire, demons, did not seem to suit me. My name would be placed on the top of my left foot, as I am left-handed.
Soon it was time for my tattoo. The studio was wiped down; proper sterile procedure was followed, everything was opened in front of me, and my skin was prepped. Wiped down with a sterilizing agent, and the stencil was placed spot on. The only surprise was how loud the tattoo apparatus was. It was really quite loud, or perhaps that was the excitement. The period was permanently inked, and there was no turning back now. The tattoo was applied backwards, as in first the period, then my last initial, and then the letters of my name working right to left. After 15 minutes, Sean had the work done. Wrapped in bandage, the tattoo was now permanent. I have had a lot of reconstructive surgery over my life that has provided me with a great tolerance for pain. The discomfort of the tattoo was perhaps like sunburn. This lapsed after a few moments. Aftercare was straight forward, multiple washings and application of unscented hand cream. For the first few days it looked like it was applied with a sharpie, however after about a week, it is really starting to thin down a bit, and look really good. It is in black ink, and I am certain it is applied correctly so that it will not turn bluish green in years to come. This is what happens when the tattoo moves beyond the skin and into the fat layer. I am very impressed with Sean, as we discussed photography and I gave him some hints to work with his camera.
I am very happy with my tattoo, as some of my co-workers were rather surprised being that I have a rather conservative nature. This was the weekend I jumped tandem out of an aircraft skydiving, turned 39, had a wonderful get together with friends, and got my first tattoo. I am not certain if I will get another tattoo, however if so I am certain it will be at Atomic-Tattoo, put simply they are awesome, professional, friendly, and was the perfect tattoo experience. There was no pressure or judgment. My tattoo was handled with the same importance and respect, as would a larger more intricate tattoo. I am very pleased with the results, the placement is different from what everyone is getting, and people who have seen it really like it because it is unique, as it is definitely me.
submitted by: Anonymous
on: 01 May 2008