Self Portrait Challenge Inked

This month’s Self Portrait Challenge theme has been ‘Introduce Yourself’. I was thinking last night about what I could do for today’s picture and suddenly remembered my tattoos.
Not that I forget about them, but since all but one are on my back I don’t see them that often, so they’re not at the forefront of my mind, ya know?

(Apologies in advance for the poor photos and quality…these are scanned pics…)

The first tattoo I got was the sun on my right shoulder blade;

I was sixteen. At the time I was a big Rollins Band fan and admired the sun Henry Rollins has tattooed on his back — that’s where I got the motivation for my first tat. I love the colors of this tattoo; after all these years the reds, yellows, and oranges really stand out.

The next one I got is the one on my left shoulder blade. It was a ‘home job’ tattoo — my ex-boyfriend’s sister’s boyfriend did the outline in his apartment and it looked like shit. I was always embarrassed by it and decided when I was in college to have it touched up at a professional tattoo studio.

I had the tree of life put in the middle then. The tree of life is quite significant for me — just before my mother had her liver transplant, she gave me a tree of life pendant of hers that I’d coveted for years. See also my self-portrait pop-art style.

Since then I’ve always associated the tree of life with her, and when I decided to have it put in the center of this tattoo I had the artist photocopy my pendant so he could replicate that particular tree exactly. He added greys and whites to make the tattoo stand out a bit more and I plan on having my mom’s first and middle name tattooed just underneath it, so it curves with the circle.

I think I got the one on the base of my neck next — it’s a peace sign woven out of seaweed with fish swimming through it. When I was a teenager I got a sheet of temporary tattoos out of a candy machine and that was one of the images.

I took one look at it and knew I wanted to get it tattooed on me. Of all the tattoos I’ve gotten, this one was the most painful, being at the base of my neck. I need to have it touched up and I’ve avoided having it done because it hurt so fucking much the first time.

The above tattoo is on my tailbone — from left to right, the three symbols are my zodiac sign (Virgo), the female symbol and my planetary sign. The artist who did this told me that getting a tat in this location would either hurt a great deal or feel almost orgasmic…let’s just say it was quite a pleasurable few hours for me.

I have one more tattoo that’s not pictured — a very small ladybug on my right hip. I took some pics of it this morning but because it’s so small (think the size of a quarter), it didn’t show up well at all. But it’s there.

My tattoos always have and always will be a big part of who I am. They’re addictive — I have several more I’d like to get, but I’ve got lots of time.