Name: Mariana Souza
Age of first tattoo: 14 or 15
Favorite tattoo: That's a very hard question...I love them all. If I had to pick it would be my Matryoshka doll.
Featured tattoo/location: Matryoshka Doll on my forearm.
Artist/shop/location of featured tattoo: Dan Pryor @ Seven Seas Tattoo, San Diego CA. (Dan is the man!)
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've always loved Russian nesting dolls. My mom had one when I was little and I loved it. Later on I became very obsessed with them and collecting everything I could find with the Matryoshka in it. I bought a book about them and that was when I had the idea of the tattoo. I talked to my artist, Dan, gave him a few pictures and he came up with the perfect little doll!
2) Do you have any other tattoos? If so, what do you have and where?
Oh my, so many! Full sleeves on both arms. One started with a piece inspired by a design by Tyson McDoo ( tattooed pinup) and then I decided to go with an asian theme for the rest of it. Got a geisha, kokeshi doll (mathing the matryoshka on the other arm), chrysanthemum, rising sun on the elbow, Hanya on the inside and purple spirals and cherry blossoms all over. The other one is more random. Have a Virgen de Guadalupe inspired Betty Boop, a cute little fan on the elbow, a big pink owl on the forearm, diamonts, candy, ice cream, just things that I love.
Big chestpiece. Olsdchool saylor style. Big anchor in the midle with a lock holding 2 hearts together with my parents names on it. Nautical Stars with little flowers on the side.
Flag of the State I'm from (Sao Paulo, Brazil)
Big cherries on my feet.
Design by the artistKukula (my fav!) on my calf
Antique cameo on my chin (between my thoat and chin)
The nickname me and my husband have for each othe on the side of my hands and our wedding date on the side of my wrists.
Some other random things and horrible tribal tattoos I got when I was a teenager. (so bad)
3) Do you plan on getting more?
Absolutely. I wanna pretty much cover myself. Just not the face. Still have pretty much both my legs, back and torso to fill up!
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?
My friends love my tattoos. They're a big part of me and very noticeable so people talk about them all them time. I'm an esthetician and work with people all day, the tattoos are always a way to start a conversation and they never forget about me.
I don't think my mom and dad are very fond of them but they respect my decisions and understand that I'm a grown up and chose the life I live and my own future.
I've had a lady in the drugstore look at me once and say I was disgusting and that God made us a certain way and we should respect it. I couldn/t believe it! My husband was so pissed off!
When I got the cameo on my chin it cause a stir. People wouldn't stop talking about it and my mom told me she was in shock. She was really upset and thought that people would judge me or that it would affect my future professionally. But we talked and she understands that I'm in a line of work that allows me to be who I am and that tattoos are very accepted nowadays.
I am married (mentioned him already) and my husband has lots of tattoos but I'm catching up with him!
Go for it! I think everyone should do whatever they feel like doing. Its your body and you have the right to do whatever you want with it. Tattoos make you unique. Just make sure you go to a good artist and wait until you're old enough to make the right decisions. Tattoo removal is expensive and it hurts like hell (been there). Don't be cheap. Tattoo artists are amazing talented people and their work should be recognized.
They make me happy. It's all I can say!