Monday, January 7, 2013

The Twin Blackbirds Have Landed, 2013 here we are

2013, you come to me like a new lover
promising a year full of adventure and beauty and creativity, if only I make the effort to stand up and embrace you.
Shine for me 2013, beckon me away from laziness and complacency. Kiss my cheeks and smile for me - for then I will want to show off for you, to create for your eyes and dance excitedly. I want to feel the rush of adrenalin as I hurry home to show you all I've accomplished each day. To feel your light as I wake up, ready to make the day proud... This is my wish. This is my wish for us, 2013, that we rise together and make great things.

Thank you 2013, for starting me off well, with direction. And thank you to the authors who are commissioning me for covers, the friend who showed me a path to a new job, and the university who changed their requirements, thus allowing me to teach there again.

Now all I have to do is stir up my self drive. To let my artistic and academic dreams scream louder than the comfortable couch and the glow of the computer.


So Yesterday I got my very first tattoo. Did I start small? Did I start with a simple image? NO! *grin* I got a fairly large and VERY SHADED piece on my lower right leg and ankle.
~See more photos of the process on facebook HERE~

 But let me start at the beginning.

Many years ago, while pondering the universe, infinity, unripe bananas, creative paths, chimeras and dreaming... I also wondered what I would do should I lose a parent. What would I do to honor them or to remember them by? I determined that if mother ever passed over to the great beyond, I would get a tattoo that would make me think of her. I determined that it would probably be a blackbird. Or a bluebird. Eventually I landed on twin blackbirds - to represent us both. And it would inspire me to be creative.

Well, in 2011, that event happened way sooner than I could have anticipated. After about a year I decided to start seriously thinking about getting the twin blackbirds. About a month ago, I get a notice that my favorite tattoo artist and one of my favorite artists would be coming through Indy. Sarah Frary. As soon as she began tattooing, I KNEW that I wanted HER to tattoo me SOMEDAY. Her mark would not only remind me to stay creative - but to hold onto the sense of adventure I crave - reading about her travels of starting a life out west and exploring the inner and outer worlds are always an inspiration to me.

So the two desires came together.
Now here's the awesome part. Sarah's best work comes when she works free-hand. Her art and energy shine. I never thought 'freehand tattoos' made much sense until I saw what she was doing. Now I know that they make the BEST sense. We met up on the 5th - and thanks to another incredibly awesome artist/tattooist Amory, we had a perfect little tattoo studio atmosphere to let the art happen.

I told her the perameters of 'twin black birds' , she performed some hot sharpie action on my leg to make sure she had a direction to work in - and that I was comfortable with the general idea. YES.
Sarah Frary Style! *breaks into dance*

 I was not quite prepared for the sensation of getting a tattoo. No one can ever know what it truly feels like until it happens. Because its not just the pain one has to imagine - it is the pain combined with the acceptance of that pain as a journey toward a beautiful destination. At times it felt like cat scratches, at times like bee stings, and around the ankle, upper foot and calf it felt like a knife or razor cuts. But I just smiled, grabbed my upper leg and stared VERY INTENTLY at the wall, or the air in front of the wall. At times I was frozen, my mind very preocupied with processing the feel. What made things smooth was the laid back creative atmosphere. Amory was also tattooing another patron and another friend of theirs was in the room. The laughter and jokes that floated in the warm room made for a very comfortable, friendly and light hearted situation.

(...Funny enough as I write this, and have all my music on RANDOM, the song that is playing right now is "Fever Ray - Dry and Dusty" - and I keep hearing - "We are capsules of energy". I could write a small novel on how this fits, but I'll just shorten it by saying that Sarah is one of the people I think of when I listen to Fever Ray.) 
I am very very very happy with the outcome. I am excited that I decided to let my first tattoo be a freehand expression and collaboration between my basic idea and Sarah's hand. This could not have come at a better time. A heartfelt thank you to Sarah, the universe, Amory for the use of his studio and David for his constant love and support, and thanks for all the comments and love on fb after I posted the first picture. This was an important step for me. Like, leveling up on a video game. Wheres the level up music? XD


More Self Drive Please 

Yep, I changed the name of this blog BACK to the self drive thing. I feel it helps me keep at it.
I plan to try posting generally once a week, but my life is never on a schedule so who knows how often I'll post. January 3rd saw the first of my random art pieces.
"My Dreams are made of Gold" 9x12 mixed media on bristol paper.

In other news today, its Daves b-day! We had sushi with friends and it was grand. My b-day gift to him happens next Saturday when we see Mummenschanz!


  1. Such a cool story! Thanks for sharing your experience, and the inspiration for your tattoo. I've never heard of freestyle tattooing, but it looks like it makes sense to design art freestyle on someone's body, since it is a three dimensional surface. In any case, the results look amazing!

  2. woo hoo! you finally did it. Looks really beautiful. Congratulations. Are there more to come, hoping to see a cat one of these days! xoxo Ant tea lee

    1. Oh Hurrah I am glad to see you encouraging it. *GRIN* Now I shall have to plan a cat in there somewhere. Someday. A little red cat.