talk to strangers.

bride portrait

Originally published 12/5/2011

I was looking at the viewing statistics for the site here and noticed that one person among the couple hundred went through every post just about in the space of a day or two. OMG ARCHIVE BINGE! It made me extremely happy and I felt warm, and loved.

Whenever I find a site or an artist I like online I just read EVERYTHING from them, I will binge until I am reading their diary from ten years ago, if it’s posted. Like when I found crimelibrary the first time, or when I started looking at explodingdog. I just went nuts, spent all my internet time following the trail back to the start. I suddenly realized that you guys read my stuff and look at my site the same exact way I look at yours and that made me feel really good. So thank you, anonymous archive binge person, for making me both happy and more educated about what I am trying to do, and how people feel about it.

THEN- I have gotten a slew of emails from total strangers, asking questions, tattoo and art process stuff, and general sort of things. I LOVE talking to you guys. Man, if you’re reading my stuff someplace and suddenly have a question, and you email me that you like my things and want to know the answer, I get sweaty excited about it. It makes me feel good- I love sharing information, and while I am not the most educated or the most knowledgeable about everything the things I DO know I love to share. And sometimes even if I don’t know, I can send the question to someone who does. And that feels great too.

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And also- I spent the last few days interviewing a series of artists for a longer article I’m putting together. I’m working hard to write something useful about it. It’s taking me some time to assemble but I think it’ll be good. Talking to new people who get it, and who are working in smaller ways to affect the world- people who put their hands on the work and make things that have deeper meaning as well as visual aesthetics- that’s been really eye-opening and inspiring to me too.

Oh, and, last of all, I spent a day making paper. That was fun as all fuck, too.

I love talking to people about art. I don’t know how approachable I seem but really, I like talking to new people and I really feel great when I can help someone, give information, or just even see that people are interested in what I’m doing. So thanks guys for reading along.

If you have questions for me to answer, let me know in the comments. Or email me!

(you can find more of me by googling resonanteye, I am literally everywhere online. I talk to all the strangers!)

The evolution of tattoo culture

tiger tattoo

tiger tattoo

To understand the current popularity of tattoo art in the US and Europe, it is important to know a little bit about its past.

Tattooing is one of the oldest art forms known to exist. The oldest preserved human skin ever found is decorated with tattoos that were done during life. It is used as a form of expression in the majority of the world’s cultures, and has been used for many purposes throughout history. In the last century in the West, it has been less common than in other parts of the world and in previous times. Recently, there has been a resurgence in its popularity.

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The ten reasons people get tattoos.

time to make the donuts

time to make the donuts

Tattoos do have a purpose, although to some it may seem they are merely frivolous decoration, or a ploy for attention.

After giving it some thought, I’ve realized there are ten main reasons people come in to get tattooed. I personally have been tattooed for all of the reasons listed here, and more.

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What are your reasons for getting tattooed?

anji-marth-tattoos-and-art-70Tattoos do have a purpose, although to some it may seem they are merely frivolous decoration, or a ploy for attention.

In indigenous cultures, tattoos are used to mark rank or status. In the west in modern times, this still holds true for many people. Getting a child’s name or portrait marks the wearer’s status as a parent, for example. Some use tattoos to show their membership in a group such as a fraternity or gang, and others wear them as status symbols to express their positive personal qualities, such as wealth or the freedom to look as they please.

Tattoos in the west in previous decades carried a heavy stugma of social unacceptability, and this has contributed to the use of tattoos to mark “outsider” status in some groups. Bikers, gang members, and prisoners may get tattooed as a badge of pride in their outsider status.

Tattoos can also mark a momentous occasion for the wearer. The birth of a child, the beginning or end of a relationship, or the attainment of some goal are all personal milestones that some choose to remember with a tattoo.

full-3Some use a tattoo to express their political or religious feelings. Many young Christians get crosses and fish tattooed on them as reminders of their moral beliefs, and many people get symbols of their personal opinions tattooed on them.

Others use the tattoo to commemorate the life of a loved one who has died. These are currently popular due to some television shows’ use of similar stories.

Yet other people will get tattooed for superstitious reasons. Sailors even today will get a pig tattooed on one foot, and a chicken on the other, to prevent drowning. Many also get tattoos of talismans or personal symbols of good luck. Horseshoes are always popular.

2a62883f6a5facde8cd4ba3b8f98258b-d4d2ojnBy far the most common reason to get tattooed is to express a hidden aspect of the wearer’s personality. The majority of people I’ve tattooed over the last ten years have stated that this was the reason they decided to get tattooed. For some this is as simple as getting a single word in english, or in another language, such as “truth” or “love”. For others, it can involve a large and extensive custom drawing that contains many personal symbols or images that express the personality of the wearer.

Another purpose of tattooing is simple decoration. Some people love the way tattoos look, and get abstract designs intended to emphasize or beautify various body parts. Some use a decorative tattoo to hide flaws such as scars, stretch marks, or older, less-attractive tattoos.

In the ten years I have been tattooing people, out of thousands of clients, I have only ever encountered two or three that claimed to get tattooed because they liked the sensation. Usually the pain is a sacrifice people are willing to make in order to accomplish the purpose of the tattoo.

 

yelpers

tumblr_n7bjqcpvJp1sfnn0mo3_r3_500side note: they have the wrong website listed for me, and it’s been years since I worked in Corvallis. but don’t let that stop you!

did you have a mind-altering experience getting tattooed by me? If so, hit up the yelp page about me and share your mystical insight with the world. Now, yelp has a history of extortion, and of treating businesses badly. But I find it to be a fun place for you guys to express the strangeness of your time with me. I hate the way yelp treats restaurants in particular, people seem to be so mean to the wait staff then write on there to brag about it…Let’s make my little corner of yelp into something different. Something a little more…off-center.

You can see by the reviews that have already been posted that I hope you feel free to express yourself in detail and with a mind to the hidden aspects of your own experience.

Here’s the link, go hit it with your best flowery and psychedelic prose. The closer your review is to a David Lynch plot, the more I will love you for writing it. Also, tip your wait staff well as hell. Serving people food is one of the most emotionally draining jobs on earth.

 

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Farmer Joe's dahlias.

Otherwise known as Bill the Butcher vs. Amsterdam

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Te voy a enseñar a hablar Inglés con este cuchillo.

Farmer Joe’s dahlias.

Otherwise known as Bill the Butcher vs. Amsterdam

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CAM00708CAM00706 CAM00712CAM00714CAM00711

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Te voy a enseñar a hablar Inglés con este cuchillo.

I'm learning instagram! Also, man tears and logging tattoos.

10497256_10152279070637712_3793600154937322876_o

This is Cody. He’s teaching me to instagram. (my name there is resonanteye)

10440668_10152279295327712_6958900651736761659_n

this isn’t political or anything, I just have a fetish for eye-water.

10548332_10152279566617712_5763015077124912808_o

simple tulip I colored in.

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just some sky.

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a gang of doglets.

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added on to an older tattoo I did years ago.

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how that tattoo looked all healed up before we added the text and sunset colors.

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an inch.

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apprentices.

I’m learning instagram! Also, man tears and logging tattoos.

10497256_10152279070637712_3793600154937322876_o

This is Cody. He’s teaching me to instagram. (my name there is resonanteye)

10440668_10152279295327712_6958900651736761659_n

this isn’t political or anything, I just have a fetish for eye-water.

10548332_10152279566617712_5763015077124912808_o

simple tulip I colored in.

10404339_10152274117152712_529879433899499100_n

just some sky.

10522473_10152274115847712_8650231444119354793_n

a gang of doglets.

10345923_10152272128827712_7173156773499527783_n

added on to an older tattoo I did years ago.

10494529_10152272128632712_7889055341943246950_n

how that tattoo looked all healed up before we added the text and sunset colors.

10334240_10152272129082712_1128309351944727929_n

an inch.

tumblr_inline_mzokt5aMYd1rtghi4

apprentices.

How you can help me. and other medical nonsense!

If you follow my site or know me personally, you know I have been through some medical hell the past ten months or so.

TMI after the break.

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