Today marks another milestone in my life – I’d just gotten my first ever tattoo.
Between almost inking the combined initials of my ex and me, and this real one today, I have had many ideas and many a time that I “wanted” to get a tattoo. A lot of hemming and hawing, and mostly just being a wuss because of the fear of pain and regret.
I have heard some people say you should sit on a tattoo idea for at least three to five years, and then, you can proceed with no regrets if you still want it after.
I tried and it doesn’t really work that way, well, at least for me. What I came to realized is that tattoos are like battle scars. They should come in the heat of a moment, and no matter how they look, what leaves behind is something you are proud of because this mark has a story behind it.
Without going into the details of what I went through recently, I decided that I needed to get “unfazed” inked. Unfazed means calm, unruffled, unperturbed, untroubled, poised, relaxed, self-possessed, etc. I needed to ingrain the idea of ‘unfazed’ in my head during a tough, tough period like this. I needed to get a hold of myself.
Typed out “unfazed” in Photoshop, styled in my favourite typeface, kerned properly, and I started looking for a good tattoo artist. There are limits as to how perfect a tattoo can be, especially when it comes to text and geometrical ones. But being a typography person means I have to find someone whom I can proceed forward with a peace of mind.
I was immediately sold when I looked at Wendy Fong’s work and the caption went something like, “she’s the one if you want sharp lines that can cut through a shoe”. Also, that photo was of a Thai word tattoo. My love for Thailand, though unrelated to this subject matter (but what are the odds right?), further confirmed she’s the one!
Fast forward to today, it was… quite an
embarrassing experience. All good at first and the pain wasn’t that bad. It felt like when Junior mercilessly yanks his teeth into my hands/legs – which is rather bearable.
But I was so nervous halfway through the process, I started to feel lightheaded and break out in a cold sweat. We had to take a break and the other tattoo artist jokingly told his customer not to behave like me since it was her first time as well. So fazed while getting “unfazed”, can somebody hashtag #fail already? Heh.
We carried on after a can of coke, but not long later Wendy decided to stop and continue in a separate session. She was afraid that my skin will break or something, so I’ll be back in a month!
Apart from the letters having different font weights now, I am really happy with it. I cannot stop staring at it and feel like how it was as though someone had printed the text on my wrist. And most importantly, I feel empowered already.
***No photo of it publicly until it’s finished!