Rabbit_tattoo-drawing_blog

Perhaps you read the tale of how I came to the decision, despite having professed for years that I’d never ever want one, to go ahead and get a tattoo. Here, then, is the account of the experience, from designing the perfect rabbit suitable for permanent emblazonment to, tee hee, Sparky McFuzznuts the squirrel.

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I have drawn this rabbit a lot in the last year and a half, yet when it came time to draw one for the tattoo, well, I guess I experienced some performance pressure. I thought I’d whip one out in a maximum of ten rabbits. Turns out, it was fifteen pages of twenty-four rabbits. That’s just under one rabbit for each day of the year.

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I didn’t love any of them on paper, but I picked the ones that passed as my favorites, cut them out and taped them to a single sheet of paper, and scanned them in. As a graphic designer, I was confident in the digital magic that could be done. I narrowed it down to parts of three or four rabbits that I knew I could Frankenstein together for The One.

In choosing The One, I practiced what I’ve preached to my mother on many a Teddy bear shopping excursion. It’s true that there are ten or twenty Teddies to choose from. And I know you want to choose the one with the cutest face. But once you get any one of the ten or twenty home and away from the other nine or nineteen, you won’t know the difference.

Once I got the rabbits to where I liked them, I employed the same strategy. It came down to one rabbit with two minor variations. I knew that once I got one away from the other, I’d never know the difference. Having also learned from playing Trivial Pursuit, I went with my first instinct.

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The final decision was the size. After I had drawn a bunch of the rabbits, I started to think that maybe it didn’t need to be quite that big. I printed out the final rabbit in a range of sizes and decided to go just a little bit smaller.

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Jers was my tattoo artist at Saint Sabrina’s. I tried to draw him out on some advice—he was the professional, after all—but he kept insisting that it was my tattoo and my decision about anything I asked him. Then I realized that the squirrel he was holding on his business card was actually his furry companion, Sparky McFuzznuts. Then I saw the back of the card.

During the process, I quizzed Jers about Sparky. I refused to look at what he was doing. It’s not that I’m afraid of needles or blood, but I just have this habit of psyching myself out and I didn’t want to take any chances. Learning about Sparky was the perfect distraction.

Jers said he rescued Sparky as an orphaned youngster. He nursed him to adulthood and tried to set him free, but Sparky just hung around the yard so Jers accepted him as an indoor companion. Sparky is about three.

It wasn’t too painful. I had figured it would be akin to when my cat CJ is in her basket just to the side of my mouse arm and decides that she needs to be in physical contact with me. She reaches out and doesn’t exactly dig in, but still she kind of grapples my arm and hangs on and it’s prickly. I anticipated that the tattoo would be heavy-duty prickly. It was more like CJ was scratching. Not painful, but quite noticeable.

I endured—adrenalin was definitely in play—but I was very happy when Jers let up and it seemed like he was taking a break. Then, before I could remark, he said, “You’re done!” What? It didn’t even take fifteen minutes. It is a simple design and I had no previous experience to judge by, but I sure wasn’t expecting to be finished that quickly.

It’s been a week and a half and, thankfully, I’ve not had a moment of buyer’s remorse. Jers did a wonderful job and I love my tattoo!

Evolution of a tattoo

June 1, 2011

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A year and a half ago, I drew this marker tattoo of a rabbit on my wrist. As the day wore on and then it was still there, albeit somewhat faded, after my shower the next morning, I slowly decided that I didn’t mind it. It faded from my thoughts until six weeks ago when once again, the rabbit appeared on my wrist. And I really liked having it there. (Blog post / TT mission // Blog post / TT mission)

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It was then that my friend Lauren (the same one who had us thinking about cover songs the other night) gave me the old peer pressure one-two. 

She lives in Philadelphia, but whenever she’d come to Minneapolis to visit our friend Rob (the one who moved to California, remember?), the two of them would always pay a visit to Saint Sabrina’s Parlor of Purgatory to get something pierced.

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Lauren is coming to town later this month for a family thing on her husband’s side. She has made a case for me to take over for Rob in accompanying her to Saint Sabrina’s (looks like they’ve dropped the Parlor of Purgatory from their name). She has a new tattoo that she’d like to get, and I am just about sure that I will get the rabbit. I submitted a request for an estimate and if the price is less than the arbitrary cut-off point I’ve set, I’LL DO IT!

As I was looking back through my Tweak Today submissions, I saw how often this rabbit has made an appearance, and in what varied mediums. Its appearance has also evolved somewhat, from the kind of  pensive fellow in the original marker tattoo to the rather more coiled fellow in the second marker tattoo and the recent chalk drawing.

Here, then, is a gallery of  … The Rabbit.

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Drawn in condiments. Hershey’s chocolate syrup and Readi-Whip, to be exact. (Blog post / TT mission)

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Cut paper picture, recreating a way I used to make art as a kid. (Blog post / TT mission)

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Connect the dots. (Blog post / TT mission)

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Blaze orange duct tape 3D sculpture. (Blog post / TT mission)

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Hopping mad. (Blog post / TT mission)

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A woodcut I made, art for the sake of art. (Blog post / Blog post 2 / TT mission)

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Carved on a zucchini. (Blog post / TT mission)

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In a picture to hang on your refrigerator. (Blog post / TT mission)

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Chalk drawing on the bike path. (Blog post / TT mission)

 

[Update: The tattoo price estimate did come in within range and I did get it. Read all about it in this later post.]

 

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Heretofore, I’ve never had the desire to get a tattoo. I’m not sure I do now, though perhaps I do moreso than I did in, say, September. That’s when I drew on myself with a couple of different Sharpies. And it turned out that I didn’t mind how it looked.

I have always maintained that if I did more body art, it would 99.9% be likely to happen as a demure nose piercing. I have never thought that I wanted to get a tattoo.

But two funny things happened. About a year ago, I accidently discovered that my mom had gotten a tattoo. At age 70! Without consulting my dad! Who didn’t realize for months afterwards! I certainly don’t feel like I have to keep up, or tell anybody if I do.

Then we had the marker tattoo mission. And I liked it! I didn’t try to scrub it off.

Today I’ve been thinking about it again. If I did actually go through with the real thing (which I’m not saying I will), I would get this rabbit, pretty for sure. I could see having it be about 75% of the pictured size. However, I think the overall line thickness to rabbit-size proportion is exactly right.

Maybe I will have it done at Saint Sabrina’s, or maybe I will have it done in Camden. TBD, perhaps sooner than I think.

Bowl or die trying

November 17, 2009

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I was going to extoll the delights of bowling, but given my scores tonight, I cannot in all good conscience do so, so this is a mercifully short post for a change. It was definitely a die-trying night. There’s always next week.

This is my Storm Ace. I don’t use it much anymore, but it was the easiest to get at when I wanted to take the picture of my marker knuckle tattoo. It’s my fourth ball, the odd ball out of my three-ball bowling bag. Maybe it would have worked for me tonight.

Storm scents their balls—the Ace smells like wintergreen.