Wishing you a prosperous New Year!

“In the New Year, may your hand always be stretched out in friendship and never in want.”  (Irish toast)

“Lang may yer lum reek” (“May there always be a fire in your hearth”, Scottish Toast)

Athbhliain faoi mhaise duit!  (Wishing you a prosperous New Year!)

Frost on Window, New Years Day in Minnesota

Frost on Window, New Years Day in Minnesota

the Last Tattoo of 2009

we're not horsing around here...

Here it is… drum roll please… the last tattoo of 2009… freshly inked!  And a coverup too… complete evolution of pics to be posted soon.  (Postscript… the completed photos of this cover up are posted in the 1.28.10 blog.)

Hey everybody, have a safe and happy New Year!  See you in 2010…

From the Photo Archives

Bluebird and Autumn LeavesHere’s a fun pic of a colorful piece from my archives!  Old school (not in the fun way) tattoo artists insist that tattoos require a heavy black outline.  “Not true” I say!  While the black outline does serve a meaningful purpose in some designs, there are situations in which the black is unnecessary.  When we look at objects in life, the only time we see a black edge is when the subject is in shadow.  When an item is illuminated we see color.  So, when we render a subject as a tattoo it rocks to go all the way and render it in full living color!

Welcome to the new digs!

Art With a Point Website ScreenshotHey there!  Welcome to the brand spanking new Art With a Point website!  Completely redesigned, more interactive and user friendly!  (And its handsome too!)  Anyway, I see you’ve found the blog, so while you’re here say ‘hello’!  Check out the portfolios for some new pics… and if you’re a user of FaceBook and Twitter, you can visit my pages by clicking those nifty little icons below.  See them?  They’re right down there to the right…  Be sure to stop back regularly to check out whats new and hey, why not tell your friends about the site?  This will be a great place to connect and keep in touch!  So keep on coming back…

Special Offer from Art With a Point

Offer good through December 21, 2009125Offer

Transformation of a Tattoo, part 3

GrafCoverUpOnce you’re ready to transform that old tattoo, trying to come up with a new idea that you know will work over the old can be mind bending. Begin by coming up with three ideas you’d like for a brand spanking new tattoo, then schedule a design consultation and we’ll sit down and talk tattoos. Chances are, at least one of your three ideas will work as a cover up. During your consultation we’ll zoom in on which idea to focus on, how we’ll go about integrating the old with the new, and we’ll schedule your appointment for the cover up to take place.

Nothing is permanent. Life changes and so do we. Will the tattoos I have when I’m eighty be the same tattoos I have now? Not a chance… I’ve already covered or transformed several of my first tattoos into new designs that better reflect where I am now on my journey.

Transformation of a Tattoo, part 2

Sunflower Cover UpIf tattoos are permanent, how can we transform them into something else?  Such is the craftsmanship of a quality tattoo cover up, a transformative process that weaves the previous tattoo into the greater tapestry of the new design.

Cover ups offer many options ranging from the ability to cover an existing tattoo with an entirely new tattoo, to breathing life into the old tattoo by reworking lines and color.  Cover ups also facilitate consistency by preserving elements of an existing tattoo while smoothly integrating the old with the new in an expanding, extensive piece.

The previous tattoo will always remain with us, a bookmark from years past woven invisibly into the updated expression of who we are and where we are at present.

Stay tuned for part three; in the meantime forward this message to a friend and then meet up and share your own stories, ideas or questions about cover ups on the Art With a Point FaceBook page.

Transformation of the Tattoo, part 1

Goddess Cover upHey, life changes and with it, so do we.  Maybe a tattoo becomes outdated due to a relationship coming to and end.  Or due to the way we come to know ourselves more authentically.  Maybe the tattoo was just poorly done in the first place and could be nicer, or maybe it was damaged in an injury.  Sometimes we just want something else in that location on the body and would like to use the space for the new art. Cover-ups are one of my favorite aspects of tattooing.  Body image is a precarious perception and a tattoo can help heal or deepen our feelings about ourselves.  When someone walks out of my studio with a new tattoo they love, it’s a beautiful thing. And when that new tattoo replaces a lamented tattoo, the experience can be transformative.This is part one of a three-part series in which we’re talking cover-ups.  Check back next week for part two… and in the meantime, share your own stories or questions about cover ups on my FaceBook page!


FootprintsWhen I complete a tattoo and it walks out the door on the person wearing it, I am constantly aware that whether I ever see the artwork again remains to be seen.  Tattooing is an artistic medium unique from any other in that these images are living, breathing, moving pieces of that live life in every moment with us. With that in mind, it was great fun to revisit a tattoo I completed a year ago on a mother celebrating the first birthday of her first child.  At that time she brought with her the original of her newborn daughter’s footprints which we reproduced in their actual size and with realistic detail, as a permanent memento of the imprint becoming a mother has made on her life and a tribute to the journey they share.

It was great fun to revisit this tattoo a year later when she stopped in with her daughter to drop off this beautiful portrait taken on her daughters second birthday, to see that the tattoo is looking just as realistic and detailed as it did a year ago… and of course, to pass happy wishes on to the birthday girl.  (By the way, props to photographer Jessica Wilson at Kiddie Kandids in the Bloomington, MN Babies R Us for the great photo.)

Next week I’ll begin a three week series highlighting cover up work… you know… changing that old, tired, outdated (or just really unfortunate) tattoo into something that you are once again in love with.  Cool stuff.  Check it out.

60 Second Sketch, Brought to Life

Screen shot 2009-12-17 at 10.59.36 PMI enjoy the exercise of creating a 60 second sketch. I travel with a sketch book and when something of interest catches my eye I’ll often quickly render a series of ideas from that subject, whether it be on the subway in New York or from a canoe in the Boundary Waters. It’s a terrific way to familiarize oneself with the most basic structure and detail of a subject; 60 seconds allows time to nail down only the design structure itself with one or two primary details necessary to bring the subject to life. When I’m in the canoe, I look forward to seeking out beds of lily pads and blooms. The canoe perspective is dynamic as a series of 60 second sketches occur from multiple perspectives as the wind and current carry me on the water, producing some interesting results. I rendered one of these sketches in the medium of scratchboard for a traveling gallery show and subsequent publishing in the book “Scratch Art”. Curated by Guy Aitchison, this collection of scratchboard art was created by tattoo artists from around the world. When Jessica requested this particular water lily, it was fun to put these points of reference and experiences together to breathe life into her piece.