One of the things I had wanted to do ever since I got my first tattoo wayyyyyy back 14 months ago, was to go get inked with a friend. With my first two tattoos, I knew what I wanted, but the decision on when to get them was spur of the moment. So, planning with friends was not an option.
Further complicating matters was the fact that the artist who had done my other ink, Danny Sebastian (aka “Danny Deathwish”), had left the shop I had gone to, Pop’s Tattoo. Then, a few months later, Pop’s shut down for good. Fortunately, Danny kept in touch with his customers so that they would know where to find him now that he had moved on to RAW Ink, in Gaithersburg, MD. So, I knew where to go when I was seeking my next tattoo.
Then there was the matter of finding a friend who was looking to get their next tattoo and wanted to coordinate with me on such an outing. I was fortunate on that count, too. Jen, a long-time friend going all the way back to high school, is a big fan of tattoos herself, and she was looking to get her fifth one; which she wanted to be something representing her two-year old son.
So, we coordinated with Danny to go get inked together on March 16th (personally, I think it’s only proper that I get inked on St. Patrick’s Day weekend 😉 ). The excitement of knowing that a new tattoo is about to happen in enhanced by knowing you will be doing so with a friend. On the 16th, we hopped on I-270 and made our way over to RAW Ink.
Jen was first up for her tattoo. Her concept was to get her son’s birth sign, Sagittarius, as an inscription on her wrist, with the arrow being replaced by his name and birth date.
With Danny being the skilled artist that he is, he will look at a concept and make suggestions on how to best bring it to life. In Jen’s case, the complexity of what she was looking for would have resulted in a design that would be too compressed for the wrist. The details would not stand out and, over time, would end up blending together. He did a mockup of a larger design, incorporating the elements she wanted, which would need to run lengthwise down her forearm. While it was larger and had a different placement than Jen had planned, she liked new mockup and Danny got to work.
I have long been a proponent of recording the experience of getting inked, in addition to showing off the final product. Getting a tattoo is as much a journey as a destination. Jen had not done this before with her previous for tattoos. So, she liked the idea of chronicling it this time (her mother also wanted photos of Jen getting inked :-D).
Finally, the finished design came in to being.
As you can see, Jen is pretty happy with it.
Now it was my turn. I had been going back and forth between two designs I wanted underneath my flag tattoos on my left arm. They were a Libra symbol (my birth sign) and a triskelion, a Celtic symbol representing the holy trinity (it also has significance dating back to the Neolithic times relating to themes of the number 3). Because I was having difficulty determining what form I wanted the triskelion design to take, I had initially decided on getting the Libra symbol. Then I found the following image embraced the simplicity and detail that I wanted. I also liked the symmetry of the triskelion being my third tattoo.
I sent this design to Danny with the request to see how we could add some color to this design, as well. Leave it to him to come up with a concept that gave the design some three-dimensional depth that allowed shades of green to be incorporated.
Then the work began.
The halfway point
Wrapped and ready to go.
Later that evening, I celebrated with a beer and let my new tattoo get some air. It turned out really well 🙂
Getting a tattoo is always a great experience. However, getting to share it with a friend helped make it special. I was thrilled with my tattoo and Jen was thrilled with hers. Once again, Danny did great work.
Check him and the studio out at: http://www.rawinkstudio.com/