Sunday, August 7, 2011

The long drawn out complicated answer to the most frequently asked question

I took a survey and asked people how often I should Blog. (by survey I mean I asked the 3 people I was out to dinner with) The consensus was that once a week was average but more is fine. My big concern was being one of those people who updates their Facebook status every 10 minutes just to tell you they changed their socks or they put cream cheese on their bagel (yes spell check tried to change that to beagle, I mean who puts cream cheese on their beagle? Peanut butter yes, cream cheese no) So in the grand pursuit of balance I am going to try and shoot for 2 times a week unless things get crazy.
Now, on to the long drawn out complicated answer to my most frequently asked question....
What made you start tattooing/why did you choose to become a tattoo artist.
Well, honestly I didn't start out wanting to be a tattoo artist. I wanted to be an ice cream man. Driving around in my little van playing pop goes the weasel dispensing frozen treats to kids. Sounds creepy now that I am an adult but when I was 7 it was the best idea in the world. My dreams of being the ice cream man were destroyed one fateful day when I was skateboarding in front of my house. (I am sure I was dreaming of being the next Tony Hawk even though I couldn't manage to stay on my board let alone do a trick.)  I lost control of my board and it shot out into the street in front of a speeding ice cream truck and was destroyed. After that I developed a deep dislike for ice cream trucks and retreated into the safety of my house where they would no longer be able to destroy my dreams.
Well, since I was stuck inside I had to keep myself entertained. I read a lot of books and began to draw bad little illustrations to go with them. Slowly I got better and began to take classes in school. By the time I reached high school the only class you could ever find me in was my art class. There I spent long hours thinking that I was going to be the next great illustrator or creature creator for Lucas. Watch out Brian Froud, Larry Elmore, Brom all you guys, I am coming for you!
My plans to attend college fell through and I drifted along for quite some time. I got caught in a web of retail jobs and soon I realized that my greatest goals and aspirations revolved around becoming middle management.
Things needed to change. My sarcasm was getting the best of me and every day seemed to be getting worse. I had talking to friends about tattooing and had been asked to draw a couple for people. I kept thinking about how great it would be to do illustrations for and on people. To work with the story of a real person instead of a made up character in a book. So with a little (by little I mean a lot)  help, love and support I made the leap.
So yeah, it really boiled down to my desire to be an illustrator. I still take classes off and on in pursuit of my illustration degree. As for my tattoos, I am really just now getting to the point where I feel like my tattoos are truly telling the stories of those who wear them. My design are starting to shift from simple objects placed on the body to more involved concepts. Well, at least that's what I am aiming for :)
Side note, I once answered this question with "Why not" and "How else could I make this much money doing art" They didn't go over well.
Side note #2 I also wanted to be a Vet but I realized that I wouldn't be able to keep all the animals alive. I wanted to be a hermit in the woods of Alaska and live off the land but I realized I would probably have to learn to hunt (refer to the above line where I mention wanting to keep all the animals alive)

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