Designing my first tattoo.
This week a dear friend of mine asked me to design her next tattoo. I really had to think about this one because I had never ever made anything like this! Could I really be designing my first tattoo? I felt thrilled that she asked me to make something so permanent and at the same time afraid cause could I really pull it off? Could I make something that in her eyes would be so perfect that she will allow it being tattooed upon her entire under arm? For ever!?! That when she is 80 and looking down at her wrinkled underarm, she will see the design I made for her and hopefully she will think of me. How awesome is that???
And so the designing started
We started chatting about what she wanted. She said she wanted two B’s symbolising her mom and dad. She sent me some examples of fonts and styles she liked. While taking a shower, which usually is my thinking spot and actually the only area in this entire house where I can be alone, I started brainstorming her tattoo design. The ideas that she had sent me were too basic in my mind. They had already been thought of by somebody else and I wanted the centre of her design to be her own, something which means something to only her.
So then I thought about her parents. They are divorced but mean so much to her so in a way they were standing strong in her world, back to back. Back to back, that was the keyword. Think outside the box Sas, I thought to myself. Back to back, how can I project that on a piece of paper? They had to be strong B’s because they are two strong people. They had to be steady cause that is what these two people are in my friend’s life. So with this all in mind, I stepped out of the shower and after getting dressed went straight to my drawing corner. I sketched some ideas and sent them to my friend and she instantly loved them. Awesome!
Now she said she wanted angel wings. At least on one side. Gloep! I thought. Wings…. I have tried drawing wings in my youth but they looked more like two fishes. Thank god there’s Pinterest! After looking there I came up with some ideas and started drawing but the wing was too big my friend thought. And she wanted it positioned differently. So back to the drawing board I went after she sent me some ideas of how she liked them. Then the other side. It was empty and my friend told me she loves lotus flowers and peonies.
The first sketch came out horrible. The whole picture was tipped over due to the wings. It was just way off. My friend then sent a picture of another flower which was a bit bigger and more massive. I started drawing with that flower in mind and so the one thing came after the other and two days later my design was done!
Work can also be charged
“How much do you want for your design?” my friend asked. Uhhhh… pricing… uhhhh never thought about that one! How do you know how much a design is worth? So I looked up some examples on the internet and finally we agreed on a price. Lesson learned! Next time I will talk about the price before starting a job!
It was so much fun to make this piece. It gave me such satisfaction and self-confidence that my mind and my hand were able to make something like this! I absolutely loved it! And I know now for sure, my switch has come. This is what I want to do. Design hand-drawn pieces for others. I hope in the future to go digital but at this moment I am such a disaster with technology that I stick to this for the time being. Later, when I have more time on my hand, I will learn how to do these things digitally. But dangit! What a great and fun experience this was!
xx – Sas