Rock on, Minnesota Olympians!

Winter Olympics 2010

Winter Olympics 2010

The Winter Olympics 2010 begin today in Vancouver and Minnesota is sending twenty two athletes, more than any other state.  Rock on, Minnesota Olympians!

I came across the Olympic Creed this morning which reads: “The most important thing in the Olympic Games is not to win but to take part, just as the most important thing in life is not the triumph but the struggle.  The essential thing is not to have conquered but to have fought well.”

I’m liking that perspective – big time.  And in that light it’s a given that many Olympic athletes mark themselves to honor the struggle to reach that pinnacle moment of participating in the Olympic Games.  Vince Hemingson’s “Vanishing Tattoo” has a nice link to Olympic imagery as well as links to photos of Olympic athletes and their ink.

Art With a Point is joining a handful of shops across the country in honoring our Olympic athletes by offering free Olympic tattoos for medal winners.  In fact, in the spirit of the Olympic Creed I’m broadening the offer to all twenty one of Minnesota’s Olympians who are participating.  So, if you’re one of Minnesota’s twenty two Olympians, come on down for your tattoo after Vancouver.  And, if you medal be sure to bring your medal with you.  (I’ve always wanted to see one.)  In the meantime, lets cheer on and congratulate all the participating athletes on a road well traveled.

Saving on Your New Ink

Tattooed folks appreciate choosing a new tattoo over an awesomacious trip, tickets to a sweeeet concert or the newest electronic doo dad.  Tattoos last forever and serve as a grounding reminder of what’s important to us.Victorian Goodness


The fact remains that lots of people are feeling the financial pinch right now.  The current economic situation is challenging, causing us to reconsider spending on ourselves.  And yet, treating yourself provides a well earned respite from the daily grind of life… like a cheer up turbo.  It’s true that tattoos can be expensive, however there are ways you can save on your new ink:

Timing

Winter months tend to be the slowest in tattoo studios.  While it’s not proper to haggle with the artist over the cost for their time and expertise, keep a close watch on Blogs, Social Networking and eZine mailings announcing specials offered through the colder months.  Art With a Point has a special offer coming up next week – watch for it!

Preparation

Creating the tattoo is an artistic process – one that begins with your ideas.  The more clear you are about what you want, the easier your idea is to bring to life.  Collect images or items that can help you to describe your ideas.  Google Images is a smokin’ free resource!

From Concept to CompletionMake use of the Consultation

Art With a Point is unique in that it’s one of the only studios providing you the opportunity to speak directly with your artist prior to your tattoo.  I offer complimentary consultations, so hey – why not take advantage of them!  Get your questions answered and collaborate with me to hone in on the details of your design so that you can rest easy knowing your tattoo is an authentic reflection of your ideas.

Take it in steps

Patience is a virtue… blah blah blah.  Hey, I hear you.  It’s hard to be patient waiting for new ink.  And while small tattoos are easily completed in one sitting, when it comes to budgeting there’s something to be said for working on a medium or larger sized tattoo in a couple of (or more) sittings.  This shortens each appointment time, spreading out the cost.  And hey, in the meantime your new ink is tangibly with you rather than but a mere concept.

So, when the craving for new ink keeps you awake at night Google your ideas and email me the goods that you find.  Schedule a complimentary basic consultation to get the ball rolling.  From there we’ll create a plan to bring your tattoo to life in a way that works for you.



Today at the Studio

Today at the studio: Norse Mythology. More specifically, Heimdalls Horn.

Heimdall uses his horn to summon the Gods. Go Heimdall!

Heimdalls Horn

One Cool Cat

Egyptian Bast

Paying homage to Bast, egyptian feline deity.  (Those of us with feline friends understand its best to pay homage regularly, right?)

Evolution of a Tattoo

Sunflowers for his daughters

Evolution of a tattoo, from concept sketch to completed half sleeve.  Sunflowers were the central theme, one for each of his daughters with a glowing star for his wife.  But there were a few other considerations as well because he really wanted a half sleeve and wanted to avoid something “too” floral while having a piece flowed naturally with his arm.  I sketched the concept art (see left), using movement, flow and color to set off the sunflowers.  A few sessions later this sweet half sleeve was complete.

Props to Old School

Without old school, there would be no new school… so hey, props to classic old school!Vintage Tattoo

The Ambitious Professional

Tattooing has traveled a long way from its sacred origins in Indigenous communities around the world to its’ out of context arrival in North American seaports and military bases.  And has continued to evolved further from crude art form to a fine art medium.  Tattooing has in fact consistently evolved more rapidly than our society’s understanding of the medium and the people who choose to be tattooed.

This NY Times article (1.26.10) reports an estimate from the Food and Drug Administration that an estimated 45 million people have tattoos.  The author also states “that it is unlikely that the ambitious professional… will ever have… a full chest or back ‘panel’ or a tattooed arm or leg.”  Now, of an estimated 45 million Americans that have tattoos, I’m gonna bet that number includes ambitious professionals.  In fact, a majority of my clients are ambitious professionals with tattooed arms and legs, and yes… even pack pieces.

Throughout the documented 5300 year history of tattooing, tattoos have been used to reflect changes in life status.  This remains exactly why so many people continue to choose to wear tattoos.  They are acknowledgements.  Bookmarks.   And while the media may continue to reinforce old stereotypes about tattoos and the people who wear them, assumptions about individuals cannot reasonably be made.  Really – we have no idea what mind blowing tattoo sleeve is under that suit coat or what captivating back piece is under that dress.  (Okay, sometimes I do because I put it there…but you know what I mean.)

And while its feasible that an estimated 17% of tattooed Americans “regrets it”, I find that statistic vague.  What in life doesn’t change?  The person we are at 40 will be (hopefully) different than the person we were at 18.  Life changes and we change with it.  And your tattoos can change with you as well.

Here’s a photo of a cover up I completed yesterday on (you guessed it) an ambitious professional.  There’s an old saying that goes, ” The only difference between tattooed people and non-tattooed people is that tattooed people don’t care if you don’t have a tattoo”.

Cover Up: Running Horse

Today’s Tattoo

Great Blue Heron … Today’s tattoo, an example of how size grants you room for intricate detail, not only on line work but also in color and shading.  And also a reminder of warm days to come when these majestic birds settle in the wild shore grasses of Minnesota, warming in the sun… niiiice.

Hold the date… the Tattooed Lady: A History

January 31 at 5:00 pm, Magers & Quinn Booksellers

January 31 at 5:00 pm, Magers & Quinn Booksellers

Today, almost a quarter of Americans now have tattoos.  Yet there was a time — not very long ago at all — when tattoos were not at all acceptable in mainstream society.  To be tattooed was to be an outcast and a freak.  Many women found freedom in their decorations, traveling the country, performing nearly nude on carnival stages, making a living as “The Tattooed Lady”.

The first book of its kind, The Tattooed Lady: A History uncovers the true stories behind these tattooed women of the circus sideshow, bringing them out of the sideshow and examining their working-class lives.  These gutsy women spun amazing tall tales about abductions and forced tattooing at the hands of savages, but shared little of their real lives, and though they spawned a cultural acceptance of tattooing that we still see today, they have largely faded into history.  Combining thorough research with more than a hundred historical photos, this lushly illustrated social history reveals tattoo origins, women’s history and circus lore.  The Tattooed Lady uncovers the remarkable women of the sideshow — many of whom were born and live in the midwest.

Amelia Klem Osterud is a tattooed academic librarian from Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  She has a Masters in history from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and writes and lectures on the subject. The Tattooed Lady is her first book. Visit her blog here.

Amelia Klem Osterud reads from the Tattooed Lady: A History on Sunday, January 31 at 5:00 pm, Magers and Quinn Booksellers, Uptown Minneapolis.


Check this out…

Need some mid-week entertainment?  Then get a cuppa Joe, have a seat and click here … ‘cause this will keep you laughing, gasping and guffawing for hours.

Yes, here you’ll see the good, the bad and the ugly… only all of it leaves you wondering,  “really?… Really?… seriously.  REALLY??”  Some of this is the most heinous quality tattoo work you’ll ever see… and some of it is good quality work combined with stunningly unexpected design concepts.  Check it out.  You’ll see.