how does the darkness feel.

Originally published 02/02/2012.

It is so hard to tell you.

It comes as a wave.  It builds. It is slow, and heavy, and at first it feels as if I can continue to stand in it, and resist the current.

When one’s body is broken, it is visible. Others can see the broken parts sticking out, smell the rot, assess the damage and quantify the exact amount of sympathy, decide upon a course of action. The dark inside is different. The body shows it, yes, but not in ways that can be understood by anyone who has not been sucked under.

The darkness rises, and the current underneath will lift and grab. One’s whole being, the air around, the muscles give way.

Just get up. Just shower and shave and do the dishes and feed the dog and wash the clothes and cook food and pay a bill and go to work and

None of these things are possible. When you’re standing on the shore these are easy things, simple, small things. In the grip of the current the only fight is not to get sucked under completely, to keep the head above the surface enough to steal a breath.

And another, and another. Because you can’t just stop breathing.

I know I should just talk directly about my own experience, here. I know I should be specific. But how can I? How can I?

I have smelled my own stench when a week of the darkness has left me washed up on the shore. I’ve been catatonic- seen shapes in the shadows. I’ve felt pain in places where my body is not. And when the body is hurt, broken, or ill, the darkness knows, and rushes forward to seize its chance.

Being alone, in pain, and having the dark wash up on you is something you must, and most will, experience in life. You cannot understand it until it comes, and when you have been through it you will have changed. The darkness leaves a mark on you that can’t be washed away by all the sunlight and blowing curtains and fresh water you can muster.

It passes, and it’s gone. Once it’s come and gone you know it can come again, though. And that haunted feeling will stay.

Good times are good times. And they are best because the darkness has been and gone. The shadows make all the light around them richer.


password to the clubhouse.

Originally published on 07/28/2012

When I started tattooing, anyone I saw with large, visible work was very nearly guaranteed to be someone who was in my tribe. I don’t mean tribe in the sense that we shared every opinion, but that we shared the expectation of being considered somewhat beyond the margins of the common, outside the mainstream, someone who was not acceptable in mixed company. We were subversive. I could look at someone, see their work, and know they were on my side of that equation.

Because of this, I felt a connection to everyone I worked on. I could open up to them, exchange ideas and energy with them, and really bond. We both knew, after all, what it was like to be outcast, to be strange, to be the “Other”.

That has changed. Now, at work, I block energy. I try to keep things light, and a bit distant. I only can connect like this after I have worked on someone a few times and gotten to know them. There are exceptions, of course. But the exceptions are indeed exceptional.

I don’t think that my own approach to my work can change this. I can educate people about getting better tattoos, but the kind of life experience and wisdom that a tattoo used to signify is NOT something that can be bought, or sold.

You have to earn it in your own life, with your own bitter tears. Nobody can give it to you in a few hours for a few hundred dollars. Not even me.

I don’t advertise myself as a “shaman” or healer of any kind. I am aware that at times I am performing healing work, that for some, the process itself is ritual and meaningful. Tattoos are incredibly meaningful and important- but they’re not necessary. I don’t think I could live up to the responsibility implied by the word “healer”. I’m not an actual priestess. But I try very hard to let that energy exist in my work when I feel that it’s possible.

It’s just possible a lot less often these days.

I think this shift in expectations, from then til now, has made me more withdrawn, more reclusive. I know that I am harder to reach for tattoos now than I ever have been before. That the process of getting me to tattoo you is more difficult, more drawn-out. That I no longer am in a hurry.

I think it is a good thing. I think I do better at the tattoos that I make now, than I have before. And I think it makes me more able to connect with my clients than I had been recently.

Just rambling. xox

blogjam, yay!

BEST. COMIC. EVER, just did a comic about me being brutal!!!

It’s great! If you browse through the comic’s archives, you’ll see why I love blogjam so much. Also, he made me look very…dapper, in the comic, which I think is hilarious.


(*I’m also really stoked because I am right after JOHN WATERS in the comics…oh my gawd I love him so much.)


Published on: Apr 19, 2009

6 reasons to post your art online (even if you’re nervous)

shy owlI know, you’re shy! It’s ok, so am I.

Posting your art online can feel very exposing, much like a gallery show. Posting it to social media or other sites can feel scary; and a lot of the time the fear of negative response keeps people from presenting their work online. You don’t have to be afraid, though. Yes, you may get negative responses to your work. You may get criticisms, or even personal jabs at you. But there are benefits to posting online  that definitely outweigh the emotional turmoil these things can cause.


Obligatory gift guide post.

bird in the handYes, I made a gift guide. There’s a few hundred things there by now! I know SO many creative and amazing people- and every year I buy from them instead of going to big box stores. Why? Well, partly because I enjoy owning things made by hand, by people on their own time. And partly because I hated every factory job I ever had. If you’ve ever worked in a factory you know- you may do the job itself well or with some pride, but you do NOT put love into each and every piece of your piece rate. Especially since you get paid peanuts, made to work holidays away from your family, and -unless you have a GREAT union- every single thing you make is like a nail in your coffin, hurting your back, blistering your fingers. Also, handmade goods, the money you spend on them goes right back into YOUR economy, not to some CEO’s offshore hoarding pile of money. The money you spend on handmade gets spent, right back into the world.

For those reasons, and MANY more, I buy from people who make things by hand themselves, from people who create art (then sell it or get it printed and sell the prints) and from people who curate vintage things on their own. These people do these things because they love them. And all too often these people are broke at the holidays, while everyone rushes to trample and kill each other to buy mass-produced garbage they’ll forget about in a month.

You can’t buy every single thing like this, of course- but there are a hell of a lot of things you CAN. And so, you SHOULD. You will feel good, the receiver of the gift you got will love it, and unlike factory goods- it will not be set aside and forgotten when the day is over.

Go check out the handmade and small business gift guide I made.


workingI like what I do.

It took a long time to get better at it (and I’m still only okay,) and during most of my life I have come across as a cynical, pessimistic person. I’ve usually played down whatever I was doing that was good or that I thought was awesome, just so as not to jinx things. I’ve jinxed stuff before and I don’t like it.

But through all of it I think I’ve always held deep inside a fundamental sense that things will eventually, somehow just be OK and that whatever I was doing at the time, as long as I enjoyed it, it made me happy, then all the rest would work itself out.

You have to decide what you like. That’s the hard part. I happen to like orange, so I painted my house orange inside. I mean, I rent, but fuck it, right? As long as it’s left how I got it… it can be orange as long as I live here. So bright orange, bright baboon-ass red, straight shock pink. All next to each other. I also like having tons of fun things laying around to pick up and make art or play with. So it’s kind of a haphazard mess of weird instruments, odd bits of plastic, paints. I live in Ville Villekula.


on becoming outgoing

the ghost writerI used to be really, really shy.

I went through years of just never talking to anyone, just going home after work. Reading. Spending time alone or with one or two friends. Then I went through a long, angry phase of hating people who were social. That lasted a while.

At some point, BAM! I was no longer so shy.

As soon as I didn’t care what anyone thought, things got a lot easier. If someone doesn’t like me, it doesn’t really matter. I mean of course there are people that I’d like to have like me- I still don’t feel all the way happy in a crowd- but now, it’s discomfort, a bit of anxiety, whereas before it was crippling and it kept me alone most of the time.

Of course some people don’t like me much, now that I am a loudmouth. But then again…some people wouldn’t have liked me no matter what I did.


routines of creative people

20063091023341After devouring all the old posts at Daily Routines I decided that I should make record of my current daily work.

I suffer from insomnia, and have throughout my life. The hours in which I do these things slowly shift later and later, until the day begins at nightfall, This progresses until eventually, I once again wake up early in the morning. Right now I’m in the morning phase, in about three months I’ll be back around to the night time again. But the order in which I do everything stays the same, only the tattooing hours change, being sometimes early in my day and sometimes at the end of it. I do all but the tattooing every single day, I take no days off usually unless I am feeling under the weather in which case I shorten all my work hours and spend more time reading or watching movies. I do at least some little bit of creative work every day.


A day

It’s one of those days when i realize there’s very little point, and give up. Fighting the current is tiring. See you when i dive back in.


I tell you all the time…

That I appreciate all the support, but I also tell you all the time how you can help me out (sharing links to other sites, buying my stuff, etc)

Now I wnt to know- what can I do for YOU? What do you want to see more of? Less of? What kind of things would you just love to hear me rant about, draw a picture of, or review? You can tell me in a comment, or you can email me at resonanteye at the gmail dot com, either way is fine- but I’d love to know how I can make this site more fun for you, more worth your time and all the attention.


xox I love you peoples.

closest image I have on hand that looks like "GIANT VALENTINE FOR EVERYBODY"

closest image I have on hand that looks like “GIANT VALENTINE FOR EVERYBODY”

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