How old were you when you got your first tattoo and what was it?
I was 18 when i got my first tattoo. It was an ohm on my left shoulder. I was taking a religions class at the community college and i really liked the idea. It was impulsive. The same week i got my high school sweethearts initials on the inside of my hip. That was the most dumb decision I've ever made. Another impulse tattoo.
What is your employment status/occupation and do your tattoos effect it?
At the time I was working at an art supply store and I wasn't even allowed to wear the stud in my nose. The whole span of going to nursing school I also got a Celtic daisy on my right shoulder, a seahorse down my side and some script on my wrist. As a student, I didn't care who the artist was. And I'll admit I actually got tatted in someones basement once. Now I'm a nurse. I am a charge nurse at a long term and rehabilitation facility. I am very good at what I do and get mostly positive comments on my art. Since getting off that student income of nothing, I have several florals around the originals on my shoulders and a large peony on my forearm. I've had conversations with 91 year old women about how they want a tattoo or wish they had one like mine.
What is your favorite piece? What is the meaning behind it?
I love my florals because they remind me of the garden me and my father grew together. I chose the flowers for their symbolic and emotional value.
Do you have a favorite artist who you go back to or do you collect different artists work? Why?
I have become comfortable with one artist. His name is Travis Combs from Monkey Bones in Beavercreek, Ohio. He knows my style and paints on me with his gun; I like that since I'm an artist too. We have alot of plans for my skin and he does all of my husbands tattoos too. I have fixed all of my impulsive basement tattoos with art that I can be proud of. No initials from a horrible memory... ugh. Don't do that. No matter how awesome you think it is at the time.
Have you faced any specific discrimination due to being tattooed?
Discrimination? Well, in school I had to embody their vision of a professional. I wore long sleeves to cover myself even in summer weather. My father also hates that I "waste" money on tattoos. But I also promised him I would never get a tattoo and never get on a motorcycle. Now his son in law is a Harley man too. Heh, oh well. My favorite part is that I can choose the beautiful display on my body. I have several surgical scars that I had no power over and those scars tell my story just as well as my tattoos. When people ask me about them - why I got which one - its almost impossible to explain because there's so much involved. Except my Reindeer. I just like the doodle and kept it in my wallet for years. So. "Just because" is my answer.
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