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I'm hoping to get my first tattoo this winter: I want a Capricorn symbol on my foot or my ankle, and the other foot/ankle will later have a rooster or a crane.
The Capricorn is obviously because I'm one, being a late December birthday. As for the rooster/crane, I was born in that Chinese zodiac year, though I need to see which it is and how it's traditionally drawn for my tattoo.
Anyway, I could use some advice on the process!
I'm not really sure what to ask. I've already sent in a list of questions, but I'd like more points of view on some of the stuff.
For example, the pain. What's it feel like? I've heard mixed messages about it. Some say it tickles, some say it hurts a lot, some say it hurts a little, and some say it's just like being poked a lot. I'm really not sure who to believe!
I used to have a fear of needles. It's gone for the most part, partially from age and partially from being stuck with needles so much due to medical stuff.
I'd like some view points on the pain. What was it like for you?
Also, I'd LOVE to see some pictures of everyone's tattoos!
All advice and anything really is loved!
Well, it is a needle, but with modern guns, it doesn't look like one, so that helps with a needle phobia. Needles are my one trigger that still gives me flashbacks but, I have four tattoos and they don't trigger me beyond a mild panic when the artist first starts so, I wouldn't worry about that.

Doing your ankle, the pain won't be bad except when the tattoo goes over bone that is very close to the skin, that hurts. Same on your foot, and more smaller bones to go over. Your foot would also bleed a bit more because there are more larger veins closer to the surface, and, it would be nearly impossible for the artist to miss them all.

One thing I learned with mine that few artists today tell you to do after is put Neosporin on the new tattoo and, cover it with plastic wrap before you go to bed for four or five days. It keeps the scabs soft, prevents any possible infection and, keeps you from accidentally rubbing a scab off and messing up the tattoo while you sleep. If you have to wear shoes or socks that will go over the tattoo at first, use a non stick gauze pad and the Neosporin for the same reasons - don't want to mess up the pretty artwork before it even heals.
Lots of excellent advice from Blue there. Not really much I can add to it other than to say check out the studio and your artist as much as you can. Ask others who have used the artist and/or studio before. Also, before you actually have the work done, ask to see the facility. Ask to see the autoclave where they sterilize their equipment. Make sure that they use seperate hermetically sealed needles for each client. In other words, make sure they are super clean. Most if not all repidable artists will not mind you asking and will be glad to show you around. And if they don't, find somebody else! But most of all, enjoy your ink! It's an amazing experience!
Thanks Blue and Archubbycub! 8D
I'm actually rethinking doing it on my foot (I own no shoe that I can wear without worrying about the tattoo and that aren't flipflops (not allowed to wear them while driving)), but I am still thinking ankle, or maybe my calf or on my shoulder. I'm gonna use a washable marker and play around with spots to see where I think it'll look best and at the same time, it won't stretch or go all funky looking when I lose weight (10 pounds so far! Still working lol)
I already know the artist well; he's my best friend's dad, and he's really good, and really advocates a sterile environment when doing tattoos. Though I'm still gonna ask to see everything, partly for the reassurance stuff, and partly because it just interests me XD;;
Well, to minimize the changes when you loose weight, the less fat in the area the less weight changes will affect the tattoo. Talk to the artist about that too. Some designs are less touchy about that than others and, he can help you choose the best location with all factors considered.

Above all, enjoy your ink, tattoos are wonderful mementos of significant events or times in your life and beautiful ways to show what's important to you, or special to you.
Okay, thanks Blue 8D

Yep X3 I wanted my first tattoo to be something about me that would never change, and I love fortune telling and zodiacs and stuff like that so I thought why not my starsign and later maybe my chinese zodiac? XD
The process is fascinating! When I got my tribal wolf on my right arm (my first tat) I googled the hell out of tattoos and the whole process. Then when I went to the studio they gave me the grand tour. It was awesome. I'm planning on getting another one between my spine and left shoulder blade (yes I know the pain potential but that's where I want it Smile ) and possibly one my left pec later. Trust me when I say that it is really addictive. LOL
They are awesome. I have the rose form American Beauty brand pasta on my shoulder to remind me that I can always find the beaut in life, even in a crowded store (a "keep your anxiety in check" reminder and now a memento of how far I've come.)

The there is my Salish themed "Tramp Stamp" because I am half Salish and though I lost my family, I will never loose my heritage.

My tribal wolf is actually based on a picture of the first wolfdog I owned, companions I wouldn't be without.

And, the dual riding crops, crossed in handcuffs were done by the man that got me into BDSM. Something I enjoy and, something that has helped me overcome a lot of my sexual abuse related triggers. (I know sounds crazy, but it's a big help when you can slowly explore and experience what terrifies you in a safe environment while you remain in control of what's happening.)
I think Doug's put his pictures of his tattoos in his photographs file, see under Xrimo...
I'm planning on getting "To thine own self be true" in kanji between my spine and left shoulder blade. And yes I've checked it out and it does say "to thine own self be true." I took two years of Japanese in high school! :biggrin:

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