I am so happy to share my friend Heidi with all of you this week. I've known Heidi FOREVER, seriously 10+ years and she's just the sweetest thing in the world. The internet is a crazy place, and we've been intertwined via each others' social networking sites, be it Livejournal, Myspace or Twitter, for as long as I can remember. She's also one of the most beautiful girls I ever did see, and I adore her tattoos. I was excited when she wanted to do a feature here, and I really enjoyed everything she included below. I'm positive you will too.
Name and blog name: Heidi Whitson at http://callmeabstract.tumblr.com/ (not much of a blog, unfortunately I’m so horrible at keeping up with it)
Occupation: Store Manager of a Buy,Sell,Trade Clothing & Acc Shop. Recent Graduate from Art Institute of Phoenix with a Bachelors degree in Graphic Design
Age of first tattoo: 19
Favorite tattoo: my mer-lady
Featured tattoo/location: Lower right arm. The artist is Darren Yeisley. Formerly living in Glendale Arizona but relocated in a far far away land called Pennsylvania. I actually found him on Facebook and fell in love with his work. I sat hours on end in one of his extra rooms at his home, which he had specially set up for all his clients.
1) Tell us about your featured tattoo- is there a background story or special meaning? Why did you choose this particular piece of art?
I’d be lying if I said my mystical mermaid stood for some important milestone in my life. But quite honestly I am just so obsessed with the fact that these devastatingly lovely creatures are matrons of enchantment. Mermaids are perfect pinups for feminine power. They are said to represent wild freedom, rebellious spirits and ferocious independence. I’d like to think this symbolism fits me to a T in so many ways!
2) Do you have any other tattoos? If so, what do you have and where?
Not exactly. Just my right arm-full. Above my elbow is my majestic swan and moon, along with some water waves and orchid flowers over my shoulder.
3) Do you plan on getting more?
Possibly. I plan to fill in my elbow before starting any other ink projects on my body. I’ve had ideas, But with my artist so far away its frightening to me to think of building trust with another artist.
The next body part I plan to get some more work on are my legs. Not until recently have I even onsidered anything elsewhere besides my arms. As long as I still feel feminine, more tattoos it is!
4) How do your family and friends feel about your tattoo(s)? Have you run into any adversity or negativity because of them? Do you have a significant other? Does he/she have tattoos?
I am so lucky to have a family who respects and accepts my decision in having tattoos. I grew up in a Christian home but was never cut off from exploring my creative edgy side. My dad and grandma were the only ones who really had a hard time with it at first, but eventually warmed up to it after seeing them.
For the longest time after filling in the lower half of my arm I just wore long sleeves/cardigans hiding my tattoos. I was so afraid to hear or see what people would have to say. Living in blazing hot Arizona helped me get over that way of thinking pretty quick. Surprisingly it’s opened so many doors to more modeling opportunities and I’ve had so many people I would not expect compliment my arm, from grandmas to a lot of professional types. They always want to show me their work in return. It’s funny how tattoos somehow form some sort of cool sister/ brotherhood between each other.
I do currently have an amazing job that allows tattoos so I am blessed to say the least that I can show my individuality in some way. I feel you can be edgy, fun, and still have amazing customer service while having your tattoos present. It’s just all in the way you present yourself. I’ve noticed many people tend to see past the “weird” tattoos if you know how to smile. Showing them the “odd” concept that people with tattoos can be friendly too. I have so many customers complimenting and randomly uncomfortably stroking my arm in awe of the colors. It’s something you have to learn to get over.
My boyfriend Chad Crawford of 7yrs (yes, I’m awaiting a marriage proposal possibly in this lifetime) has many tattoos as well. We started dating at the age of 18 with no tattoos in sight. He lived across the street from me growing up, he then moved away, and to make a very long story short we ran into each other again, we fell in love and here we are.
As being a successful touring musician he has befriended many talented tattoo artists worldwide, Chad tends to come home quite often from each tour and has yet another tattoo on his body, far surpassing me with his amount of tattoos. Luckily his family is equally great and accepting. They say they don’t understand it, but of course they love us unconditionally!
5) Any advice for those interested in getting tattooed but haven't gotten one yet?
Realize this is a COMMITMENT. Although it is wrong to judge other people the fact is…you WILL be judged. Make sure the tattoo is something you strongly believe in/love & that you don’t mind people asking you about.
Also, most importantly; if you are a decently attractive chick with “tats” please beware that old unattractive biker dudes will drool all over you. ::giggle::