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First Tattoo - The story of the strawberry on my foot.

One evening, when I was about six, my mum and I were sitting at the kitchen table eating strawberries and ice cream. My dad came downstairs, and having just had a bath, he had bare feet. Walking past the table to reach his own bowl, he unwittingly stepped on one of my strawberries which had been dropped on the floor. It squished between every one of his toes, and he laughed, and laughed, and we laughed with him. To this day, I don't know why it was so hilarious to him, but we still laugh about it anyway.

I think the longest part was the waiting. Filling in the paperwork, watching Clay fiddle with the machine and set up his inks. He pressed the transfer to my foot, and asked if I liked the positioning. I wiggled my foot about a bit, asked if I could move it over to the left, and he explained that he could, but that my healing would be more awkward. Looking back, I'm glad I didn't have it moved, because the alternative position slightly overlaps where I had it done, so I know now that that area of my foot actually hurt the most - in fact, I twitched a couple of times because of it. Fortunately, it was during shading, not line art, so it didn't cause a problem, but if I'd had the whole tattoo done there, it could have been a horrible experience.

It wasn't, though. I was expecting a lot of pain, especially with it being on such a bony part of my body, but in actuality, there was no pain. It stung a little, but there was no pain. Fortunately, whilst most people take the "deep breath and wait for it to be over" approach to piercing, I've always been a breather, so I easily adjusted to taking deep breaths to control the pain.

Clay kept talking to me; asked how long I was around for, why I was staying, checking I was okay. Fin and Alex had gone to keep Riordon occupied, since she couldn't enter the studio. Marn stayed though, wandering around the front part of the shop, making notes in Shavian and looking at the flash images on the wall. Every so often, I looked up and zie caught my eye and signed "I love you" to me. All I could do was smile back; my hands were balling my gloves and mopping my forehead. The gloves were soaked by the end of the session.

The outlines and seeds were done in three short bursts, and probably took about half the total inking time. I expected the shading to hurt, somehow, even though the first part hadn't so much, but for the most part, it didn't, though a few parts made me suck in more air and cry out a little "ahh". The green came first, then the red, and finally the yellow around the edges of the leaves.

I asked if I could take a break, but Clay said I was done. I was almost disappointed. It's an amazing feeling. I sat there for a few minutes to get my bearings, and then the adrenaline hit me and I began to shake. Marn and Clay looked worried, and asked if I was okay, but I said I thought I was fine - that I usually react similarly (but obviously, not quite so intensely) and that I probably just needed some sugar. He told me there was a shop next door I could get a soda, so I paid, and went to get Oreos and Dew.

We stopped off at the diner on the way home to get me some food; I had mozzarella sticks, chicken wings and more Dew, and the waitresses asked me what I'd done; apparently I was limping. I said I'd had a tattoo, and they looked an odd mixture of impressed and horrified. We went home, and Fin helped me to clean it, one foot up in the sink, using some of the soap left from zir tattoo last year. It's doing really well so far; I'm cleaning it three times a day, and rubbing in some of the body lotion Marn uses on zir psoriasis occasionally. It doesn't appear to be scabbing or peeling yet, and isn't itching at all. My only issue is that I can't wear socks or proper shoes yet, so my feet are freezing. Oh, and because the drains here are problematic, the shower is essentially a small bath, which means that I will have to shower one-legged. I've been avoiding it thus far, scrubbing down at the sink instead, but I can't do forever. I suspect that this will lead to a rather comical acci dent or two.

Overall, well... I'm already planning my next ones.


submitted by: Anonymous
on: 02 Nov. 2009
in Tattoos

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Artist: Clay+Willoughby
Studio: BodyGraphics
Location: Philadelphia%2C+USA

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