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Monarch- My first tattoo

About a week ago, I got my first tattoo. I have wanted a tattoo for as long as i knew about them. A good biker friend of my dads had a bunch of old school style tattoos, snakes and naked ladies and what not. They were old, and faded, but I always thought they were interesting. I thought his tattoos though, me being young, were scary and ugly. I didnt want something like that on myself.

I have, at the moment, 14 piercings. My mother does not really approve of these, and I always told her that when I turn 18, Im getting a tattoo. She thought I was joking, and didnt really expect me to go through with it. My father told me how when he was in his 20s, he had thought about getting a tattoo just like all his biker friends, but he didnt, because he didnt want to make a mistake. None of this turned me off getting a tattoo. I dont think anyone in my family can really comprehend how much modifiying my body is important to me, and i hope they can at least support my decisons. I am a university student, 6 hours away from my hometown, so my family does not yet know of the exisitance of my tattoo. But, on to the actual experience.

I thought, to ease the process of eventually having my family find the beautiful art on my body, that I would start off with a "pretty" tattoo, that my mother might not hate. I decided, for my own reasons, to get a monarch butterfly. I love insects, and butterflys facinate me with their metamorphasis. I had initially wanted to have my tattoo completed before christmas, but I didnt get around to making the appointment. I knew I would have about a months wait after making the appointment, im not sure why, but all the shops in sudbury and surrounding area are always so busy.

I knew I was going to get my tattoo done at Red Dragon, as Northbay was too far away, and a bit to expensive for what I had in mind, and Ink Fix, although recommended to me by many a modifed student, was not an option I inquired about a tattoo. I made my appointment, after looking through portfolios to see which artist would be right for the job. I chose Amy because, even though Laurier does very nice work, my tattoo was feminine and realistic, and his style didnt seen to fit that.

I wanted to have this monarch look realistic, it meant something to me, and I didnt want it to be like every other girl who gets a butterfly tattoo, I wanted people to know right away they were looking at a monarch, not just a butterfly. The week leading up to my tatto, I tried to recruit some friends to accompany me. I knew my boyfriend would not be able to make it as he works til 5 and my appointment was at 4. I was already skipping class for this (not recommended, I knew I could get away with it for one class), and most of my friends would also need to skip class in order to accompany me. I turned out, my roomate decided to skip her class and come with me.

We took the city bus an hour early, even though I knew I would be there early, it just how the bus system works out. We arrived 15 minutes early. This was fine though, as the shop was empty, and Amy called my over right away. I did not recieve a quote when I made the appointment so I didnt know how much this was going to cost me. I figured around 250. I was called back, and i took off my coat and such and talked to Amy about placement. I wanted it on my shoulder on my back, and after one change in placement I was ready to go.

I didnt think the pain would be anything I couldnt handle, having had piercings which were pretty intense, (both vertical and horizontal hoods and my conches dermal punched at 4 gauge)As Amy started the outline, it certainly wasnt bad at all, it kind of felt nice. But I had brought along a book to keep myself amused, and because of the angle of my arm (I was lying on my stomache) I couldnt move my arm comfortable to hold my book, so I was pretty bored. Eventually, the pain just got annoying, and I kept wondering how much longer it would take, even though it hadnt even been that long. I think it was a combination of me having nothing to do, and everytime she wiped the extra ink away, the cloth was dry and irritating my skin, and the needles against irritated skin was not the best feeling. I felt very twitchy and uncomfortable, but the actual tattooing process was not that bad at all.

After about 45 minutes Amy announced that she was done. The final wipedown of my tattoo felt amazing. It looked amazing too, she did a very good job. I paid very much less than I anticipated, so I left her a nice tip. It had been a week, and I apply aftercare lotion I bought whenever I think of it, about 5-6 times a day. I also wash it in the shower with unscented soap, but I keep leaving it at my boyfriends. Its flaky right now, and is still a little sore like a sunburn, but I know that will go away. It looks amazing and I cant wait until its all healed and I can show it off at the beach. I do not regret this at all, it looks wonderful, and I know if I take care of my skin it will look wonderful for a long time.


submitted by: Aiwass
on: 13 March 2008
in Tattoos

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Artist: Amy
Studio: Red+Dragon
Location: Sudbury

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