Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Symbolism

Body art is statement. For many people, their ink is symbolic of significant moments in their lives. For some it's an experiment, and others a bad decision on Spring Break.

I have two tattoos. My tattoos have meaning, at least to me, and I chose the designs carefully as I will continue to do with my future tats (yes, there are more to come!).

Pictured above is the second one I had done (immediately after the needle left my skin) and it's located between my shoulder blades, one dove on either side of my spine. The design is courtesy of Jess Medors, my freshman year roommate.

With summer in full swing, the doves tend to get maximum exposure with the onset of tank tops, cotton dresses, and swimsuits. I thought now would be a good time to let you all in on the secret symbolism of my tattoos - trust me, it's not that deep.

The doves are symbolic of peace of mind and the freedom to be myself. Plus, they're just really kick ass. I got this tattoo when I was going through a tough spot in my life - not sure what I wanted to do with my life and guy trouble, mostly, which at the time was the worst thing EVER. All I wanted was to be me, be loved for who I am, and be worry free. So the doves represent my optimism amidst the pessimism, a phoenix rising from the ashes if you will.

My first tattoo (pictured above right after it was finished) I had done with my best friend Kristen in Zanesville during a visit to her hometown, Crooksville. This one is pretty simple: the "H" is my zodiac sign, I'm a Pisces, and ironically the first letter of my first name, which, for the record, has nothing to do with this tat. The four dots represent the other members of my family - Casey, Heather, Mom, and Dad. This tattoo is located on my right glute just below where my pants sit on my hips.

I had the artists use brown ink for both my tattoos. It looks like henna, but I enjoyed the subtleness of the brown versus harsh black ink.

Did they hurt? Yes, and I think that anyone who says getting a tattoo doesn't hurt is lying. It's a stinging, irritating pain that dulls the longer your art takes, but some areas of your body will hurt worse than others. I can attest to that. My first tattoo hurt worse than the second. The needle stopped buzzing a few times because the artist was pressing so hard to get the ink into the thick skin on my rear. That was pretty uncomfortable. Luckily, my tattoos are small and will continue to be small because I don't know if I could sit through the hours of pain required for large tats.

Are tattoos addicting? I understand why people have multiple. I don't like putting myself through the pain, but I love the end result. It's the end result that is my addiction. And while it's not a strong addiction, I do get the itch for new ink every once in awhile. I have fought off the last few bouts, but after the wedding, be sure to stay tuned for pictures of my third tattoo.

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