I went back to Anchor Tattoo Company to have my new piece colored in, so now all that's left is the healing process! Take a look at this beautiful work...
skull done, blood seeping through
I think I'll call her Ruby
It's like he was painting on my skin
those amazing feathers
This is definitely my favorite tattoo so far. I have very few pieces that are so colorful, certainly nothing as detailed as this. The artist, Dave, and his apprentice were really fun to work with (and have great taste in music, by the way) and the whole experience just could not have been better. If you are planning to get a tattoo for the first time, I don't recommend something as big and detailed as this... some people came into the shop asking for very elaborate pieces on their rib area (extremely painful) for a first-time tattoo and Dave wouldn't even do it. However, once you've gotten used to being under the needle, both you and your artist will enjoy the tattoo more if you let them use their skills as artists by designing something original. And don't make the mistake that I've made over and over again -- don't go to the first place you see. Shop around for the right artist who shares your vision. This is going on your body forever and being tattooed is a very personal thing, so you need to feel some level of trust with the person who is doing it. Last, don't be cheap. The saying goes, "good tattoos aren't cheap and cheap tattoos aren't good." If it's so important to you that you want to permanently ink it onto your body, then it should be important enough to save up for. No one is going to do their best work if they're not being well compensated for their time and effort. For the sake of comparison, this piece cost $300 and for that price I had 100% of his focus the whole time I was in the shop, and he obviously gave me the best work he could do. This sounds self-explanatory, but it's actually one of the rare occasions that I've gotten excellent customer service from a tattoo shop (hence the need to look around for the right place). That being said, I love body art and am already planning my next piece. Will definitely go back to Anchor Tattoo!