I actually did it. I I followed through with one of my goals this year of trying something new. Like I said last week, I was planning on getting a tattoo and it finally happened.
For as long as I can remember, I’ve always wanted a tattoo. Every time I saw someone who had one, I would try to look at the different details. I also liked the idea of having a piece of art on my skin forever. The obsession was so real that I would look at tattoo designs on Tumblr. Not even as inspiration but just to admire the different pieces. I would also draw little doodles on my arm in the middle of class. It also helped that my parents have tattoos. Not a lot but they have matching ones. So, they were never against me getting one.
In college, I had friends who were starting to get tattoos, which made me want to finally get one. But I never did. I could never pin down one design. I had a lot of ideas in mind but I didn’t know which one to get first. Should it be an orchid, koi fish, Virgo symbol? Yes, I’m very indecisive so making this decision was really difficult. I mean, this was going to be permanent so I had to be sure. Another reason I kept pushing it back was because I wasn’t sure which artist to go to. I bookmarked a lot of accounts on my phone but never really committed to contacting them.
Last year, my drive to get one intensified even more. A couple of my boyfriend’s friends started getting tattoos from this one artist and I loved how theirs turned out. The linework was really clean and he used colors well, elements I wanted for my own tattoo.
About a month ago I finally settled on the design of my first tattoo: an evil eye. If you know me, you know how much I adore the evil eye. This probably started sometime in grade school when I visited Turkey while on vacation with my family. In one of the markets we visited, I would see evil eyes everywhere and even bought a handmade glass pendant, which I still have. I didn’t know what they were at first but I was attracted to the way they looked, especially the bright blue color. Later on I learned that the evil eye is actually a talisman used to ward off an evil curse “usually one inspired by envy.”
Aside from the glass pendant I have from Turkey, I have collected a number of evil eye jewelry pieces like bracelets and necklaces, which I wear everyday. So, this seemed like the perfect design to go with.
After I made this decision, I went on Pinterest to look for pegs to send to the artist. I wrote him a quick message and waited for his design. He sent me four and I settled on one that had lines and dots. I also decided to get color because it made it pop more and he said the color would age well on my skintone. Funnily enough, he used red, blue, and pink, which are my favorite colors. Now that everything was set, the only thing left was to have a needle poke my skin several times.
When I walked into the studio, I felt nervous but mostly excited. After I was set on the size, he placed the template on my skin. Something he had to do three times to get it centered on my arm. When he drew the first dot, the pain hit but after that initial poke, everything was good. As I started to see the design take shape, I got even more ecstatic. But, I get queasy easily so I tried not to look at my arm too much. The process was also faster than I expected, it took around 30 minutes. I also learned some trivia about tattooing like the formulation of red ink is similar to black, which makes it easy to work with for line work. Other colors like pink have white mixed in so the color would just bleed.
He also asked me if I had any tattoos already and I told him I didn’t and that this was my first one. He was shocked that I didn’t bring anyone with me for moral support. As nervous as I was, I thought it would be nice to have my first tattoo experience to myself.
It’s the next day and I honestly can’t stop looking at my arm. I’m so excited about it and this is definitely the first of many.
If you’re thinking about finally getting your own tattoo, here are some tips to help you out.
Be sure about the design
Remember this is permanent so you have to really like the design you’ve chosen. Don’t be afraid to tell the artist about any revisions you might have. The worst thing would be to go home with a tattoo you feel iffy about.
Be sure about the placement
You have to consider the placement for multiple reasons. First would be because it hurts more on different parts of the body. Especially where the skin is thin and closer to the bone. It’s also best to be sure that the stencil is centered. If it’s even just a millimeter off, it will bother you forever.
Ask about after care
Since this is my first tattoo, I wasn’t sure about how to take care of it while it’s healing. So ask your artist what you should do after. For me, it will take around three weeks in total to heal completely. He suggested I use a cream for two weeks to help the process along.
Did this entice you to get your own tattoo? Let us know in the comments section.
Art by Marian Hukom
Photos courtesy of Tisha Ramirez
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