Tuesday, December 16, 2014

#WeirdEd Week 36- Tattoos


I love me some tattoos. I have a bunch and want more. I have good tattoos done by well trained artists that I would trust and tattoos that are just ok done by a guy who was later fired from the shop for coming in to work stoned and ruining a dude's arm. I have planned out ink and vacation ink and please stop hurting me ink and all the stereotypical ink (tribal, a skull ans cross bones, and a Chinese character).

Tattoos are a part of life now. They are no longer things that only sailors and people of ill repute have. My mom has three tattoos. The woman who threatened to stop paying for college if I ever got any ink.

I got my first tattoo, the skull and cross bones on my left shoulder (no, I didn't just check to be sure it's the left one as far as you know) on the same day my sister got her first, a rose inside a star because she's a giant KISS fan and Paul Stanley is her guy. Mom gave Summer permission to get tattooed for her 17th birthday. Friends and I went with. I got in the chair when she was done. This is known as The Commutative Property of Parental Rules.

Many more followed, ones that I saved up for and ones that maybe I shouldn't have gotten financially. I don't have anything offensive and all my art is at least well done, though the shark on my left shoulder is toothless and looks more like a whale but hey, second tattoo and I learned. Still looks nice.

What do tattoos have to do with teaching? We can talk permanence. We can talk earning art through pain. We can talk being original vs picking something off the wall and doing that just to do something. We can talk the difficulty of changing your mind and how once you're in it you're in it.

I love talking about ink. It's living art. The application of tattoos is complicated and intense, even when it isn't painful.*Good artists aren't sticker stickers, they are true painters working on living canvass and they take pride in their work. This isn't something you're hanging in your house, this is something anyone can see and you'll have for the rest of your life. A tattoo is forever and an artist respects that bond, that commitment.

Like a teacher.

*it's always painful. Sometimes it's less painful

**I don't normally do this but I've got a really fun story about a tattoo artist speaking to my students in my book He's the Weird Teacher. You should check it out. Please.

***none of the tattoos on here are mine

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