Monday, January 9, 2012

I'm Moving!

A Drop of Ink is moving, I now have my own domain name and a shiny new website created for me by an incredibly wonderful and talented human.

Check out the new post and please start following on the new site as I will no longer be posting on here.
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Wednesday, December 7, 2011

A Drop of Joel

Name: Joel

Age: 35

Im of Maori origin from Auckland NZ,  I body pierced at Dermagraphics in Ponsonby from 1999 – 2004 under the late Phil Matthias.
I’m now married and live in Spain and have two boys 2 and 6 years of age, I speak 3 languages.
My main interests are Ancient History of Asian, Egyptian, American Indian, Maori and Polynesian.
I am currently learning the three levels of Reiki and then hope to complete my masters, I work with computers, self-employed…
I have travelled all over Europe, India, Egypt, North Africa, Australia, Pacific Islands..
I love to surf, go to the gym, anything outdoors, and hang with my boys.
I despise politics and politicians, I am a very spiritual person, I hate conflicts.

How many tattoos do you have: I have a lot of tattoos, mainly big themes, 250 hours of work…
I have full front and back, two half sleeves, one full sleeve on the left leg, full calf and shin on the right and full quad on the right..

Age when you got your first tattoo: 21

Do you have a favourite tattoo?: No, all my tattoos are my favourites, they represent my beliefs, interests, and they basically show who I am…

Any more tattoos planned?: Eventually I would like to finish both my half sleeves on my arms to full sleeves, I’d like to have two portraits of my sons with their chinese animal year tattooed in the background Asian styles on my right sleeve to continue the same theme and im still thinking on the rest….

Favourite style of tattooing?: Japanese and Maori are my favorites

Any other modifications?: Nipple, Navel, Labret, 2 x 14mm stretches

What is your tattoo story?: Well I was a body piercer and I have always had a passion for tattoos, being Maori it is really part of my culture, I basically wanted to tattoo my main passions being Asian, Maori, Egyptian, American Indian and Manga…
I have a lot of ancient magical  symbols tattooed, mainly Egyptian, I believe our body is only a vessel and we are always learning lessons from our past lives to eventually obtaining enlightenment…

I have a big Batman and Batgirl (half sleeve – upper left leg), I got this as Batman was my childhood hero and still kind of is, everything he represents...

My right arm which consists of a fire dragon and chinese letters for dragon with Maori korus tattooed in the background represent the year I was born in and my culture.

My left arm consists of the all seeing eye in the pyramid surrounded by the son and on the bottom hieroglyphics, the Ankh, reversed pyramid and the scarab which is represent eternal protection in the afterlife.. this tattoo also has the Maori korus tattooed in the background.

Inside left bicep is my son's name Kairo, he is named after the Cairo in Egypt..

My back starts at the base with a ancient Japanese bat ( I love bats ) and above it a lotus and rising from the lotus a Chinese dragon winding up the middle of my back to the top with a ninja head each side. I have a warrior in the middle who is surrounded by all the others with two Chinese symbols meaning 7 sins, my back represents my inner strength and will...

On the top of my back I have big dragon scales and Japanese tattooed from left to right..

My front is all Egyptian, a big pyramid with a tomb entrance, with stairs leading up and guarded by the two cobras down below, in the centre of my chest I have an alien head which goes into smoke to reveal the two mummies holding chains in their mouths on each side of my upper chest and beside them, an ankh and Egyptian scorpion.

I won the NZ Tattoo Convention for Best Front in 2003 for this. This tattoo mainly expresses my beliefs that Ancient Egyptians were connected somehow with alien or another force higher than ourselves..

My right calf is Maori tikis representing my culture and a symbol of good luck and strength

My left calf is an American Indian raven war bird or the Sun god in American Indian mythology, another symbol of protection

On my shin on the left and right are both Manga girls, on the left in a bikini surrounded by a wave, she is hot and on the right Chun Li from Street fighter, I always played her and she fits in with the Japanese theme well.

On my right quad, a samurai also tying in the Japanese history theme that I like.

On the back of my neck I have infinity tattooed in Chinese….

That about covers it, but my tattoos are for me , they are not tough stickers, it is art designed by me for me and is very personal, tattooing is a very spiritual process and that has been proven through all the different cultures through the ages…

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Monday, December 5, 2011

The Vikings

Like many ancient civilisations the Vikings provide massive inspiration for body art, people wanting to represent their heritage or displaying an enthusiasm for the culture. Viking themed tattoos are not uncommon in modern tattoo art, a simple Google Image search of "viking tattoo" will bring up thousands of intricate depictions of Norse gods, Nordic runes, warrior men with plaits and flowing beards wearing horned helms.

The question that I have been asked and come across in my research is whether or not the Vikings themselves were tattooed. The  have proved to be some of the most difficult on whom to collate information on their tattooing. It is only over the past few hundred years with photography and tattoos becoming more common that we have been able to see solid records of tattooing.  When a body breaks down, the skin is one of the first things to decay and the Vikings themselves did nothing to assist in the preservation of their body art. A traditional Viking burial generally involved cremation so the only tangible evidence that we have of Viking era Scandinavians is if one had fallen into the ice and been preserved.

The Viking’s, the Norse explorers, warriors, merchants, and pirates who raided and colonized wide areas of Europe from the late eighth to the early eleventh century. The Norsemen used their famed long ships to travel as far east as Constantinople and the Volga River in Russia, and as far west as Iceland, Greenland, and Newfoundland. This period of Viking expansion is known as the Viking Age, and forms a major part of the medieval history of Scandinavia, the British Isles and Europe in general. At some point in history the Vikings met the Scythians. The Scythians themselves had been all the way to Europe to plunder and ravage. The Scythians' way of seeing things influenced the way the Vikings worked their crafts - and tattoos. The Vikings left few written records behind but their surviving artwork shows they had many important designs and symbols. The original meaning of most Viking symbols remains a mystery to this day. Viking symbols range from complex knot work designs to ancient pictograms like crosses, swastikas and triskeles.

Ahmad Ibn Fadlan, the 10th Century Arab explorer provided some of the earliest and most quoted data on the Norsemen. Saying in his travels that he had come across hat has later been supposed as the earlisest recording of Vikings. They are described as having bodies tall as (date) palm-trees, with blond hair and ruddy skin. They are tattooed from "fingernails to neck" with dark blue or dark green "tree patterns" and other "figures"

Due to the lack of tangible records, there is no way for us to know exactly what the Vikings tattooed, whether they tattooed images of their gods or Norse symbols. There are reports that they would paint runes on themselves but short of Ibn Fadlan's report there is no evidence to show us what designs were used.

Images: Tattoos sampoerna, new car information
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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Celebrity Ink - Ryan Reynolds

Naval cannon on outer left wrist - drawing of the gun that goes off every night at nine o'clock in his hometown, Stanley Park, Vancouver.

Unspecified handwritten message on inner left wrist with small red star, believed to read "know thyself".

Images: weheartit
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Monday, November 21, 2011

Celebrity Ink - Pink

Left ankle - Japanese symbols for Mother, happiness, strength, good luck
Guardian angel on left upper shoulder blade
Dog tags around right ankle for her brother and father
"What goes around comes around" around right wrist
"Mr. Pink" on upper left inner thigh
Japanese symbol for love with red love heart on lower left abdomen
Barcode and "1 9879-911200-1 3" on the back of her neck (lucky number 13, her date of birth and the release of her first album, Missundaztood)
"Tru Luv" in a banner on right wrist (matching tattoo with husband Carey Hart)
Red heart on right big toe
Dragon on left thigh
Razor blade on inner left wrist
"insecurity" on inner left wrist
Broken heart saying "best friends" inside left elbow, best friend has the other half
Frog on left foot
Bows on back of upper thighs
Tribal inspired music note behind left ear
"HELP" button on right elbow, matching best friend Butch Walker's tattoo
Portrait of her bulldog Elvis on inner left arm
 "A time to weep, A time to laugh, A time to mourn and, A time to dance. Sleep in peace my darling, I release you" on inner left arm below portrait
Red star on left hand
Frog on left foot
"Sir Corky Moore" and 8 9-03 (date of death) for her dog on outer left forearm

On the tattoo around her right wrist, "It's my only truth that never changes. I believe in karma. I believe that it comes around in both ways. I've watched really good people have really hard times and then all of a sudden something beautiful happens. I've seen instant karma and I've seen karma that I think takes lifetimes and I've felt a lot of it."

Images: Pink and Carey Hart for Hart and Huntington - PinkBrasil
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Monday, November 14, 2011

A Drop of Kayla

Name: Kayla-Louise Davys (parents watched way too much Days of Our Lives) aka Kiki aka Kaywa aka LouLou aka Raza

Age: 25

Tell me about yourself. What do you do, like, enjoy, what inspires you, what irritates you, children? Pets?  Anything?!:
Well I work with the author of this blog, Miss Rooney at Motorola as the QLD territory manager.
I love music the beach and anything to do with water.
I am an incredible cook… I really should be more modest but I am master chef material!
I am allergic to Skittles have an extreme fear of Beetlejuice
Descriptive words of me Ambitious. Driven. Indecisive. Confident. Unreliable. Impulsive. Caring. Sensitive. Loyal. Stubborn. Loving. Spontaneous. Unpredictable.

How many tattoos do you have: 2, No Lies Just Love written across my wrists in white ink and Acceptance written on my right rib cage

Age when you got your first tattoo: 24

Do you have a favourite tattoo: Both of my tattoos came from how I was feeling at that point in my life, The one on my wrists though probably means the most to me as even now I look at it and it reminds me that the most important thing is to be with people who love you and to free yourself from those who lie and hurt you

Any more tattoos planned? What? Where?: I am trying to decide on the exact wording but I want one down the lower half of my spine which I want written in grey but haven’t decided what exactly it will say

Favorite style of tattooing…background?: I don’t really have a favorite style, I think they are all individual.

Any other modifications? Piercing etc.?: Ears pierced and belly button and numerous scars from being a complete klutz

Have you ever felt judged, prejudiced against because of your tattoos? Never most people are usually very intrigued by the white ink more wrists I get lots of questions about it

What made you want to get tattooed?  I have always wanted to get a tattoo but it was a matter of really feeling connected to the tattoo and knowing that it was something that I would be happy to look at in 10 years’ time and not regret.

What is the meaning/story behind it/them/each one? The “No Lies Just Love” on my wrist I had toyed with for about a year, but after having a few months where my relationship didn’t feel great and I was very unsure of what to do this tattoo felt like it spoke to me and told me that I should expect love and not lies and I remember that whenever I look at them and how I felt at that time and that I never want to feel that way again. Getting “Acceptance” on my ribs was also a reminder that we can’t always control what goes on around us, behaviors, emotions and other peoples actions as I can sometime be somewhat of a control freak and need to learn to accept the way things are.

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Tuesday, September 20, 2011


Having spent months in research and reflection, I have finally booked in for my ship tattoo, 3 full day sessions to start with. The design has evolved from where it was some months ago and will probably change a little more before the first sitting. More to the point, I am going to a new tattooist to have the work done.  A couple of my friends have been tattooed by the guy who will become my new artist and his work is incredible but the decision did cause more than a little conflict.

 A number of people that I know have travelled interstate on a number of occasions to be tattooed by the same artist. The relationship that you build with your tattooist is an odd one, not something that you can really explain to someone who has never been tattooed, not one that all people who are tattooed experience.

Its not like you automatically become best friends and as with any person you meet, you won't necessarily click with your tattoo artist, I didn't with my first one, but when you do you start recommending them to anyone who is in the market for new ink, particularly first timers going to anyone else would be cheating.

After a few sittings with a tattoo artist you  click with, the idea of going to someone else feels like a breach of the silent and largely non-existent treaty that you have made  with each other (only you are aware of this). Its like a feeling of loyalty and there is some comfort in the knowledge that this person is already aware of the way that your body and skin reacts to tattooing, different people handle it differently, some people can sit for 8 hours while others can sit for only one or two, its not a reflection of anything other than different bodies ability to withstand the trauma of tattooing. When you find someone who comes to not only understand your skin but adjusts their usual tattooing style to suit it, going somewhere else seems alien.

To have different tattooists work on your body is like hanging paintings from different artists in your house. Not only is it fine, its good. Different artists are capable of presenting the same idea in a plethora of different ways and you'll be hard pressed to find any tattoo artist who has been inked exclusively by one artist. As with all things, you find that sometimes one option is more suitable than the other. The same is true for tattoo artists.

In conclusion, it isn't cheating. Try that new artist. The old one isn't going to take you for half your assets if he finds out about your indiscretion.

Although you may may be riddled with such guilt that you end up getting two more from him. Just to make up for it.
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