Thursday, October 14, 2010

Those familiar with Tattoosday know that April is dedicated to the tattoos of poets, in honor of National Poetry Month. It only seems fair that, six months on the other side of the calendar, we let one of our contributors from this past April share her newest tattoo.

Theresa's original post can be seen here.There you will also find links to her beautiful online literary magazine The Holly Rose Review, which combines poetry and tattoo art. Sadly, Holly Rose has ceased publishing, but Theresa remains a lovely supporter of Tattoosday, and her new tattoo is quite fetching. Let's take a look:

Photo courtesy of Theresa Senato Edwards
I would also like to acknowledge that there, on her other leg, is a tattoo that says "life" in pink, with the ribbon representing breast cancer awareness acting as the "l" in life. Since October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, it seems doubly fitting to share this photo here, even though the post is more about the paisley design.

But I'll hand the explaining over to Theresa:

It took quite a few months before I finally found the right tattoo artist to do my new tattoo: a ¾ calf, color, black, and grey shading of paisleys, thorns, and teardrops. And without naming names, I approached quite a few artists, either by phone, e-mail, facebook, or in person. Some said yes but then decided it wasn’t a tattoo he/she wanted to attempt, or said the tattoo would be limited because of price, or yes but, oh, the shop only takes cash. Or yes, but maybe hold off from getting the grey shading...

Other reputable tattoo artists were recommended to me, and, hey, I’ve met a lot of great tattoo artists online because of Holly Rose Review, but, honestly, I didn’t want to schlep too far from home.

My oldest son, Richard, told me to check out Graceland Tattoo in Wappingers Falls, about 20 minutes from Poughkeepsie—yay! no schlepping! I went to the website, checked out the artists’ work, saw that they were very decently mixing color and grey shading, went to the shop.


Long story quick—the shop was clean, bright, and bouncy and Shane behind the counter was great. But when I talked to tattoo artist Diego Gonzalez about the tattoo I wanted, that’s when I felt confident that I had come to the right place and that he was the one to do it. He was non-judgmental and very helpful.

And throughout the entire experience: tattoo prep/design—discussion of what I wanted, where, and why (both in person and e-mail)—and both tattoo sessions, Diego was patient, kind, and very professional.

Much respect and thanks go out to Uruguay-born Diego Gonzalez, who has been tattooing 12 years, 9 years professionally, the last 3 out of Graceland Tattoo; who also enjoys watching Syfy movies and Science channels; and who feels that “nature is the greatest muse.”

Photo courtesy of Theresa Senato Edwards

Theresa sent me an excerpt from what she e-mailed Diego prior to their sessions, which gets closer to the core of the idea behind the tattoo:

"...just wanted to tell you why i'd like to get this tattoo. maybe this will help you as you finish drawing it. to celebrate turning 50, an age that i didn't think i would like too much, but i do. in india the paisley symbolized a time of harvest, and for me it is a positive symbol of a fruitful transition. yet the thorns are to show the pain that comes with life and what we endure before we learn and change, the tears (tear drops) to show the emotions. but tears and thorns both spill into those paisleys: that "hope" in which outweighs any despair. the art should say beautiful yet brutal--not necessarily a pretty, frilly tattoo but one that's pretty with touches of "darkness," if that makes sense...”

We were originally going to run this in August but, as Theresa best can explain, "Being a perfectionist that I tend to be (not always a good thing), I realized after getting this tattoo that the pink just wasn't bright enough in the bottom paisley. So I e-mailed Diego to ask him if he could touch it up. He kindly said yes and did a great touch up of that bottom paisley, free of charge, no less. Now it's perfect!"

Thanks so much to Theresa for sharing her lovely new tattoo with us here on Tattoosday!

Popular Posts