Last Saturday I joined a club dominated by bikers, sorority girls, and rockabilly-ers… rockabillists… whatever. What was this club, you ask? Bingo addicts anonymous? The we love tight jeans club? No, it was the we have tattoos club!
After confirming that cabbage is indeed my spirit vegetable, I decided to go “all the way” with it and have its likeness permanently etched into my shoulder. Excellent.
From the initial email he was super friendly and helpful and we arranged a time to meet. He seemed very professional, the tattoo parlor seemed very clean, I was sold. I emailed him some hot pixxx of cabbage I’d taken to use as a reference and thanks to my $50 deposit he started in on a sketch right away.
The next time I saw him I came in to check out the sketch, which was on tracing paper that he laid on my shoulder so we could get an idea of what it would look like. But it was only the outline! I’d envisioned layers and layers of subtle details… how could I trust this guy I didn’t know to make permanent marks on my body when he couldn’t even get them down on paper?
As I was freaking out at him, Dave did an excellent job of listening to my concerns and responding as though I was a normal person rather than a completely wussy loser. He explained that he’d be shading it with lots of tiny lines, similar to what you see on a dollar bill, and that the pencil wasn’t fine enough to replicate this on the tracing paper. It would end up looking smudgy-shaded, which is not what he was going to do.
And he totally knew the magic words to make me shut up and trust him. When I was stressing about the size or that it would be too realistic or not dark enough he said – well, we want to keep it from looking like a celtic knot-tribal explosion.
And he was right, that was exactly the explosion I feared most.
That day we set the appointment for the real thing, and last Saturday, after a hearty breakfast, I went over there for my appointment!
The tattoo itself was 3 hours of what felt like getting stung by a bee over and over and over again. Not the kind of pain that has you cursing the day you were born or crying out in agony, but the kind that’s like, damn, is this over yet?
Along the way Dave was engaging and pleasant as he and mooseknuckle and I planned out what my next tattoos will be… a space scene on my other shoulder, Gandalf on my stomach holding up my breasts like orbs, et cetera. That shit will be awesome.
So, if you are considering joining “the club” (the tatto club, not the car theft deterrence device) Dave Wallin at Tatto Culture gets Brooklyn Skeptic’s full and unwavering endorsement.
Cabbage in the hizouse.