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My first (hopefully not last) tattoo

anted to get a tattoo since I was 15. It wasn't until a few weeks before my 18th birthday, however, until I actually knew what I wanted to get. It was to be a barcode at the base of my neck, between my shoulder blades. The numbers underneath would be my birthdate and my lucky number. I decided I would wait for a few months to make sure it was still what I wanted, to make sure it wasn't a passing fancy. When the time came, I still wanted it done, so I went to Visual Addictions in Carlisle, PA to get it done. One of their tattooists/piercers, Chad, was someone I had known for a few years. I've always seen him at the nightclubs or at shows, and we would talk about tattoos and experiences that he's had, etc. He had done a few of my friends' tattoos, all of which truly kicked ass. One was of a crab on my friend's shoulder blade, with the body being the Cancer sign. It had about 3 or 4 bold colors on it. It was flawless. I was able to ask my friend about his experience, which helped me a lot. I definitely think that knowing Chad for a few years helped greatly in my attitude when getting the tattoo. I was very confident in him, and didn't have any doubts as to his credibility or skill. This was a big help, because if I didn't have the confidence in my tattooist, then I couldn't have gotten it done. So, I set an apointment and came in to the studio. It was clean, with tons of flash on the walls to keep you occupied while you waited. About a half-hour later, he brought me in. He explained what we were going to do and answered any and all questions that I had. While he was prepping, we talked about misc. shit, which helped calm me down. Even though I wasn't worried about getting the tattoo, I was still getting sweaty palms. I was looking forward to this new experience. He put the pattern on the base of my neck, asked if the placement was good, and then took me back to his work area. I hopped onto the doctor-style bench and listened to the tattoo gun as he inked it. He first did a dry run over my skin to see if I would be alright with the pain. I found it to be tolerable, though a bit uncomfortable (right over my spine), and we began. The process itself took about 45 minutes. The pain was numbed a little bit from the vibration of the needles. Every once in awhile I winced because it would go right over my spine, but all things considering it was okay. I was told that doing it over the spine was one of the more painful places to have it done, so with that said, pain should not be a factor that will keep you from getting a tattoo. Also, the actually tattooing is done in parts, so it's not a constant pain. The tattooer will stop to ink up again. This pause allows you to recouperate if needed. It's true when they say that if you're faint from the tattooing, chances are it's mostly psychological, that you've worked yourself up too much. That or you just have a low tolerance for pain. But either way, it isn't that painful, and can even be enjoyable when in nice surroundings. It's all about getting yourself in a cool state of mind. In almost no time we were done. He cleaned me up, gave me some ointment and told me how to take care of it as it healed. I took a look in the mirror and smiled to see my new tattoo. I love it, I absolutely love it. It's healing beautifully. The first day it felt like sunburn. The skin was tough and sensitive. As it progressed, the tattoo began to scab over a bit. The itching isn't really all that bad. In a day or so, it will be completely healed, at which time I can go back to Visual Addictions and get a picture of it to add to Chad's portfolio. He said he had only done one other barcode. It was smaller and on the person's wrist. He said that because mine was larger, it looked better, as well as the placement of it. I recommend getting a tattoo to anyone who has an inkling of interest. Of course, though, I would suggest waiting a few months to make sure that the desire to get it is still there and wasn't a temporary impulse. And, if you're in the Central Pennsylaniva area, feel more than free to stop by Visual Addictions in Carlisle to check out the studio and ask questions. They'll be more than happy to answer them. :-)


submitted by: Anonymous
on: 28 Jan. 2000
in Tattoos

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Artist: Chad
Studio: Visual+Addictions
Location: Central+Pennsylvania

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