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On the right path.

Before I begin to tell you about my sixth tattoo, I think it would be important that I tell you a bit about myself and that might help you understand the meaning behind this tattoo.

I've always been a worrier, but it was about three or four years ago I noticed that my constant worrying was getting worse.  I know a lot of people are like this, so I don't proclaim to be any different or special but everyone around me had started noticing my obsessive worrying. I would frequently suffer panic attacks for no particular reason and if I had cold, I was convincing myself I had meningitis, I was always worried something was going to be wrong with me. I had started to wake up in the night having a panic attack and thinking that what ever I had eaten in the day would make me swell up and I would suffocate (I have a nut allergy by the way). I got into the habit of focusing my thoughts elsewhere during these attacks. I learned to talk myself round and tell my self to chill out and take a step back. I even got to the point where I would look out of the window and look at a leaf blowing past just to break this vicious circle in my head. So then the idea came to me, why not put something on myself permanently as a reminder to 'calm down'. 

That was when I started thinking of a design, originally it was going to be place on the back of my neck, but already had a tattoo further down and just didn't think it would look right. So eventually I settled on my left inner wrist, as I already had a tattoo on the right. I played around with plenty of different ideas; symbols, foreign words, a picture. I just couldn't seem to find put m finger on what I wanted.  

It wasn't until I was in work a few days later, watching a training video entitled: KIS- Keep It Simple. I thought to myself, that's it, just keep it simple. So I got home that evening and started writing in various styles and scripts the word, Calm. Took me a while to find just right way to write the word, I was quite set on it being my own hand writing, just seemed to make more sense, but at the same time I wanted it to be pretty and swirly. So in the end I designed a very simple piece of script, I stuck it in my notebook so I could frequently look at it and make sure it was definitely what I wanted, I also toyed with the idea of adding a leaf, as if it were blowing in the wind, that I was going to mull over. 

Well the day came when me and my work colleague decided to have a drive to the tattooist and get this thing done! I knew from past experience that the studio didn't open till 11am so we got there just on time... To find the studio closed, shutters down the works! On the way in the car I had still been undecided on the tattoo and I was planning to see how I felt once I got there, but seeing the place shut, and feeling so angry I decided "no I definitely want it done" and I was devastated! We decided to have a wander into town and have a mooch round and try again later on, at this point I was well cheesed off, I think that deep down I knew how much this meant to me, I just wanted it done! Next, the strangest thing had happened, I had previously described my tattooist to my friend as I thought he looked uncannily like a pirate; ginger beard, long ginger ponytail and a bandana. As we were walking down the street, she suddenly shouted, "That's him! I just saw him in his car!!" My heart skipped a beat, we ran back to the studio in time to see him pulling up the shutters and apologising he was late, his cat was at the vets!! So we followed him into the studio and this is where the fun started. 

I showed Steve my design, hoping to get his professional opinion on the style and the overall drawing. Whilst I was waiting for him to tell what he would change or tweak, he surprised the hell out of me by telling me he really liked it and would be glad to do it for me as it was. I left my friend in the waiting area while we went through to his room where he began resizing the image to fit my teeny wrist, as he was doing this realised I preferred the design without the leaf, and I thought I could always add to it at a later date. Steve then proceeded to place the image on and checked I was happy with it, which I was and carried on with the technical bit, needles machines, you know how it is. Then came the pain. Somehow it was not as bad as I had remembered and as this was a fairly simple non-intricate piece he was done in around twenty minutes! He wrapped me up in cling film and after discussing the possibility of a custom back piece in a few years, I paid my money and left. I was so pleased with how it came out, and I was so flattered that he didn't want to alter the image and believed it was worth doing in its raw stage.  

That was around four weeks ago and it has healed nicely. I have since been back with another friend and on the phone whilst booking the appointment, he recognised me instantly and recalled the tattoo he had performed a few weeks prior. I would whole-heartedly recommend this guy to anyone in the Birmingham area in the UK, he truly is a master of his art, thank you Steve, for helping me along my path of dealing with anxiety.


submitted by: Anonymous
on: 26 March 2008
in Tattoos

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Artist: Steve
Studio: Graven+Images%2C
Location: Birmingham%2C+UK

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