Occupation: Owner and involuntary janitor of Icon Screen Printing
Age of first tattoo: 18
Favorite tattoo: So hard to choose, it's a toss up between my memorial tattoo for my father on my ribs, or the diamond behind my ear for my wife, and the Ian Curtis portrait on my thigh.
Featured tattoo/location: Right thigh
Artist/shop/location of feature tattoo: Dan Smith at High Voltage tattoo in Los Angeles
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 have a portrait of a very famous picture of Ian Curtis, the singer of the band joy division on my right thigh. I have been a huge joy division fan for quite some time and I had always wanted to get this picture tattooed on me. I ended up meeting Dan Smith through a business contact and decided to ask him to do it since he is an incredible artists and a fellow joy division fanatic. He loves the picture as well so needless to say he jumped at the chance. I chose to put it on my thigh because, sadly, that's really the only spot I have left for a smaller tattoo. It's an amazing tattoo, and I wish I still had room on my forearm or bicep for it so it would be easier to show to people. Dropping your pants is often not appropriate (so my wife says).
2) Do you have any other tattoos? If so, what do you have and where?
Yes...I'll start at the top....
behind right ear: lighting bolt with "TCB". Elvis was the man.
behind left ear: Diamond with a script "M". M for Melissa. And diamonds are beautiful, like her (and expensive, like her)
back of my neck: a cemetery scene with script that says "they keep calling me", it's another joy division tattoo
chest: script that reads "forever true"
left ribs: attack duck with script that says "heroes never die". A memorial tattoo for my father.
left and right arms: A bunch of stuff ranging from pretty cool and meaningful to down right stupid and silly...mom and dad tattoos, straight edge tattoos, some dice, the virgin mary dressed like a school girl, an "77" ball, a ship, TNT, skulls, a clown, a coffin with a heart in it (this is what happens when you are 18 and get free tattoos.)
Knuckles: "INVICTUS" (the poem by William Ernest Henley, not the Matt Damon movie...thanks.)
right leg: A portrait of Ian Curtis from Joy Division. A team America world police tattoo (it's a bald eagle wearing a fanny pack). A collage of Jason Voorhees, Leatherface and Ash from evil dead. An integrity skull. A picture of Jimmy Bower portrayed as jesus which reads "the Bower and the Glory". The words "built for brutality"
Left leg: A bulldog smoking a cigar with text that reads "here to stay". A sacred heart that says "young 'til I die". A sugar skull. An angel and an devil each one with one of my sisters names on them. A dagger that says "pain" and a skull with a screen printing squeegee stuck in it with text that reads “blood sweat & ink” (at this point though, I think it might be more appropriate for it to say blood sweat & tears, cause there has been lots of tears.)
ps. I actually had to look at various parts of my body to remember all of this.
3) Do you plan on getting more?
Yes, lots more. I ran out of all of the really cool, meaningful ideas, so now I have just moved into silly stuff. I plan on getting a sacred burrito and a Popeye's Chicken logo.
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 actually don't think I have one single friend that doesn't have at least one tattoo. Most of them have quite a bit of coverage and my two best friends have almost full body suits at this point. My wife (the ever so lovely Melissa of The Loveliest Day) has quite a few as you have seen. (editor's note: I love Melissa (and Bryan too!) so be sure to stop by her blog- it's one of my daily reads and all-time favorites). My family wasn't very into the idea at first, but they have never really been outright against them. I got my first one when I was in the army and my mom always said "I'm just glad he came back with all of his arms and legs still intact to get tattooed" when ever she was questioned by friends or aquaintences about her thoughts on my tattoos. It's a pretty good come back, really. As far as negativity, yes, there has definitely been some. I usually don't let it get to me, I know how I look the average soccer mom so stares of disgust and nervousness don't really bother me too much. There hasn't been very much outright vocal confrontation or comment on them of great note. Just the standard occasional middle aged person who places great value on their opinions of other people and asks the ever so well thought out question of "Why did you get THAT?" or "Do you know how that will look when you're old?" But the reality is that about 90% of the interaction I have with random people because of my tattoos is they want to see them, touch them or compliment on them.
5) Any advice for those interested in getting tattooed but haven't gotten one yet?