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Another spontaneous tattoo!

Both times I've gotten tattoos, it's been spontaneous. Even though I have the idea in my head of what tattoo I want, I have never had it booked or decided what day I get it done- I just decide on the day that I should go and get it. I think, in some ways, it's better that having it booked a week in advance or something, and then knowing exactly when it's going to happen, and not being able to wait until that moment, or having time to think about it some more and chicken out, or what have you. I find it just makes it all the more exciting to wake up and think, 'I'll get a tattoo today', and then go and do it.

So I follow a blog on Tumblr called Fuck Yeah Tattoos, and one day I saw someone's tattoo of a map of the world on their wrist. I really loved it. A few weeks later, I got a phone call from Studylink, essentially saying that there was just under $300 of free money coming my way. Chrissy (my girlfriend) said "Ooh! We can get more tattoos!", and at first I wanted to save it, to pay off my student loan or overdraft or save it for when I go to Germany in September, but then I thought about what I would even get as my next tattoo.

Because I'm going to Germany in September, and Chrissy's going to Australia soon, and because I love travelling, and I've always been fascinated by world maps, the idea of a globe tattoo seemed right. I guess I thought of it because of the map tattoo I saw on Tumblr. Once I had the idea of it, I really wanted it, and that's how I came to spend the free money on a tattoo, instead of something one would deem more 'senisble'.

I guess one of the reasons I am so apprehensive about tattoos is because of how society sees them (or, how my parents see them). I am scared to get visible tattoos, because I'm concerned that it'll affect me careerwise (and because I know my parents think this and will give me a lecture about it too), or that I'll regret it. I think that's one of the reasons I got my first tattoos on my ribs (aside from the fact that I love tattoos there)- they aren't visible. But this turned out to be a bad thing too, as I wanted to be able to show them off, and you can only see them if I lift my shirt. So I really wanted one that people could see this time around. I considered getting it between my shoulder blades, or on the back of my neck, and I thought it would look really good there, but I didn't feel right about having a tattoo I couldn't see. I know loads of people have tattoos there, but I really wanted to be able to see this one (it actually makes me wonder if I'll ever get a tattoo on my back..). I thought about my wrist, and I thought I shouldn't, because of jobs etc., but in the end, I decided, fuck it. This tattoo is about being young and travelling, having the world at my feet, and pretty much just enjoying life. So it was decided.

Getting it on my wrist, I worried for a bit that this would be considered copying the tattoo I saw on Tumblr, but I think it's fine- I didn't intend to choose the same placement, and mine isn't a map of the world; it is a globe, showing mainly Europe and Africa- the actual design is quite different. Being a globe, I had to choose what part of the world to have. Like I said, I chose to show Europe and Africa, because it's about travelling and exploring the world, and I have been to Europe and am going back there this year. I am saving New Zealand, my home country, for a separate tattoo.

I had been waiting for a day where Chrissy and I both had off so we could go to Cambridge and get our tattoos. One morning, Chrissy said "I don't think I'll go to class today." I am terrible for not going to class, so I decided that I wouldn't go to class either, and we should go and get our tattoos. I rang Cambridge Body Art and they were free, so we got in the car.

I had been to Cambridge Body Art before, but not for tattoos. Tane, who tattooed me, pierced my tounge web a few years back (although he didn't realise it was me until just before we left), and he comes into my work sometimes, so I kinda knew him. When he started tattooing, Chrissy asked me how it was. I said, "This is nothing!", comparing it to my rib tattoos. It was a bit tender on the edge of my wrist, but nothing was too bad. I felt I could breathe and talk as well, without fearing I'd move and fuck it all up. I thought it was really cool being able to see how the tattoo needle actually worked, and I spent the whole time watching it. I now have a new appreciation for tattooists- how the hell do they know where the line is under all that ink?! An hour later, it was done, and was wrapped in glad wrap. Chrissy's tattoos took about four hours- way longer than we expected. In that time the shop was closed, so it was just me, her, Tane, and Peet, the owner of the shop. We talked for ages about travelling and stuff (Peet is from Holland and Tane has spent time in Australia), and it was just a really friendly atmosphere.

It's been a week today since I got the tattoo, and I'm so happy with it. It's healing nicely. I'm just kind of annoyed that we're going into winter (and I'm having a double winter!), so I'm wearing long sleeves and can't show it off!


submitted by: annalese
on: 19 May 2011
in Miscellaneous Tattoos

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Artist: Tane Baylis
Studio: Cambridge Body Art
Location: Cambridge, New Zealand

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