I went to The Genuine Hustle in Takapuna for my tattoo, my friend Karla works there and I wanted to feel comfortable with an artist, especially for my first one. I'm so pleased I did; Karla is such a sweetheart and made me feel totally comfortable. It was a beautiful studio that was light, airy and all you could see when you looked out the window were the tops of the trees lining the street. I showed her all the illustrations that I had collected, I had sketched out the general composition I had in mind so she could get an idea for what I was thinking. After chatting about it, she took everything over to her lightbox and sketched out my design. It was perfect! Almost exactly what was in my head, a combination of my favourite elements from what I had brought with me, with room to add to it later in a careful and thought out manner.
All up, the process took just over 2 hours. The line work was actually perfectly tolerable, it didn't hurt as much as I thought it would for the most part and while it wasn't something I could want to do everyday, when you know it's a small amount of time for a lifetime of beautiful art, it's really not so bad. I found the dot work the worst part, mainly due to the area already being quite sensitive following the line work.
I'm so happy with the end result, I think it's absolutely beautiful and I catch myself staring at it all the time! It hurts like heck the day after, but once it's all healed and feeling ok, it's going to be totally worth it.
See how it all looks after the jump.