Friday, April 6, 2012

Garden of Good and Cleavage

Protein, Stencil, Go!
Getting Tattooed Since Conception.

Today Kevin Cole and I drove north the scenic way to St.Joe, Michigan. Zaq Weaver welcomed us to his Conception Gallery for a day of elegance and collaboration; I left with this amazing tattoo.
Weighty Linework
Kevin Cole and I started out early (um, for tattooers hours) and enjoyed a fantastic early spring cruise up to scenic Lake Michigan beach front village St.Joe. Zaq had a sweet drawing of the apples and blossoms for my chest. I asked him to add a flower to the business end of the branch (near my favorite asset, the cleavage) and he tweaked the drawing. We smoked some cigs and talked some shit; Zaq and I caught up on our recent travels. Kevin and Zaq went over the finer points of Zaq's arsenal of Todd Melson (Marvel Tattoo, South Bend) machines.
Zaq pulled and pushed the lines in, sculpting the line weight with elegant precision.
We took a break and I got a chance to check out the art in his gallery. I was especially "drawn" (haha) to the shadow boxes containing reclaimed pages of print decorated with pen and ink drawings. All the guys at the shop had one up (TJ Lucas and Kyle Adoni), and it was cool to see that side of their personalities.
Y'OUCH! Tough spot for a south paw to tattoo.
TJ Lucas and his girl showed up (day off) and we took some "bad mutha fuckah" photographs of the CG crew.
Getting back into the tattoo wasn't much fun, but my excitement for the piece outweighed my discomfort. Zaq worked the central apple and the branch. I don't know how he makes a twig look so elegant, but the swerves and curves of the wood grain and the creamy blend of his twig's colors instantly crowned the chest tattoo as the "most feminine" on my body.
We took another break to head out to the park and photograph Zaq's son, who just turned a year old in the perfectly lit afternoon of the beach front weather. Maddox was in a good mood, and the shoot went quickly, but I was still concerned about the pain returning to the tattoo.
Apple and Blossom Tattoo on mAry d'Aloisio by Zaq Weaver
I swallowed a bunch of ibuprofen and whined my way through the last half.
I'm surprised at how bad the top of my breast hurt. I mean really, there's a lot of cushion there. I helped stretch my breast and prayed we'd be done soon.
I was using breathing techniques and everything.
I began mentally visualizing where he was at in the tattoo, trying to gauge his reaction if I tapped out.
It wasn't necessary though, with another wipe and a pat he said we were done.
The tattoo is well made, a visually stunning to me. Thanks Zaq!
Follow up: The very next day, the appletree my family planted (to whom my tattoo honors) streched out and bloomed.
 I love tattoo magic.