Tuesday, December 3, 2013


For Christmas last year, I got a tattoo. I have wanted one for a long time, and originally intended to get one on the occasion of my fortieth birthday, but getting artwork permanently inked on one's skin requires a certain level of commitment and surety in the artwork chosen. I had a hard time choosing a design I loved and would want for the rest of my life.

Last year, Travis, unbeknownst to me, found some artwork online that he thought I'd love. He commissioned a ceramic mug from a friend, and had her carve the artwork into the side of the mug. Christmas morning, I was beyond thrilled with a beautiful new vessel for my morning coffee, and LOVED his choice of artwork. So much so, that he told me he thought maybe that was also my tattoo art. I agreed.

Here is the mug:
Made by Barbarah Robertson, of Dragonfly Arts

The day after Christmas, we dropped the kids off with friends, and drove to a tattoo shop down near Petersburg, near where he works. The tattoo shop was pretty much empty, save for the four artists hanging out and talking. I admit to being slightly intimidated; a middle-aged couple aren't exactly typical tattoo-shop denizens, but we showed the art to one of them, who said he could do it, no problem. Unsurprisingly, he was well-inked himself.

I assured him I would not faint, scream, flail around, or do anything unexpected. I didn't. Heck, I didn't even feel the need to hold my husband's hand, even though some parts of that drawing HURT like unholy HELL.

But after about an hour, I had this:

Inked in henna brown, on the outside of my right leg, just over my ankle. I love it.

I'm thinking I want another one, but as before, finding the right artwork is key. One of these days, I'll get my next one. I was warned they would be addictive, but I don't see that happening to me. I don't really like the overly-inked look, so maybe one more in some not-terribly-obvious location will be about it. And it has to be some kind of artwork that has meaning. The horse, the spirals, the Celtic/Norse feel of my ink all appeals to me as an artist and as a person. I would like some version of the Tree of Life for my next one, I think.

But nothing ever on my face, or neck, or hands.

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