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my piercing venture

lways wanted tattoos.lots of them.i've always found that tats can be very beautiful. it really depends on the person and the design. some people you see with tattoos you ask yourself, why? others i see is beautiful art. i want a piece of art. so for the last 5 years i've been searching not only for a tattoo that says who i am, but a tattoo that i will always be proud to have on my body declaring who i am, but also art to be admired. i also had a small problem. i needed an artist to do the work. you see, tattooing in oklahoma is illegal. it's been illegal for decades. as soon as the sailors and soldiers from wwii came back with tattoos the local bible thumpers were revolted and soon pressure from the baptist forced the state legislators to make tattooing illegal. you have to go across the state border to texas, arkansas kansas, new mexico, or colorado to get one and when you show your oklahoma id (required) you're automatically charged double. the tattooist charge you double because they know you've made a long trip and desperately want a tattoo. well, a friend told me that there are tatooist in oklahoma. he has tattoos on about 30% of his body and my of them done in state. the problem; i want a tribal tattoo and his artist does not do tribal. i had this great design and still no one to do it. i learned of others tattooist, but not all of them really know about sanitation. some think if you put the equipment in the dishwasher it'll be okay.i'm very weary of hepatitis and other infections. after looking around and asking a lot of questions. i finally found a guy who'd been tattooing outside the state for 20 years, in fact his had his own business in the south. he had to move back to oklahoma because of family reasons. so, he set up shop at his house. he let the some local cops know about it to see what they thought. their reply, "just don't put up a sign. Lee's his name and he's adamant about sanitation. my time had arrived. i talked to him, we hit it off. lee liked my design. it's a large tribal design that will curve up my arm and around my shoulder blade and around my left pec down to my ass. it's sort of like a tribal shield design. when i first arrived, i was nervous. even though i met and talked at length with lee, i was still nervous. is he truely adamant about sanitation? am i making the right design decision? is it going to hurt? am i going to regret this? can i really afford it? i've got a house payemt to make. well, the first buzz of the needle went of and lee was ready to do my tat. i knew this was the time to just sit and relax and enjoy the ride, even if it hurt. i'd been wanting this for a long time and i'm going to do it.i didn't know what to expect. truthfully, it didn't hurt. not at all. i really mean not at all. not even discomfort. lee started the outline. he finished. it took about 45 minutes for the outline. maybe longer. we took a break. i didn't think it was going to take this long. you know, even with a design this big i'd thought it'd take a couble of hours. it had been that long just for the outline. i watch with awe as lee filled in the desgin with black. he was great. we'd take a break every hour or so. i'd walk up to the mirror during the breaks. i loved what i saw. my tribal shield was forming. i was excited. in fact i was aroused. i wanted lee to do the entire design that night. we're talking hours and hours and hundreds of dollars worth of work.we went on to finish the first phase of about 12 phases. five hours later, a little blood, a little sore, tired, but happy as hell. i know realized it's going to take a very long time to do the whole design but i'm eager and can't wait. the healign process wasn't too bad. i paid special care to what lee had to say about the healing process. one time i did slip up and got the tattoo realy wet. i was afraid the tattoo would fall out of something like that, but it didn't. it's healed nicely. we need to do some more fill in work. black is a dark color. i return in a few weeks to get another large section of my arm done. lee's real excited about it. i'm even more excited about it. i have a feeling lee and i will become long time friends.

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submitted by: Anonymous
on: 21 Aug. 1999
in Tattoos

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Artist: lee
Studio: underground+tattos
Location: somewhere+in+oklahoma

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