Tattoo Lesson No. 1 comes courtesy of Danville resident Eric Moore: Never ink someone’s name on your body — unless it’s simply Mom.
Moore, 54 and laughing hysterically, said he speaks from experience. And that’s apparently all anyone needs to know.
Lesson No. 2, offered first by event producer Izzy La Plante and then by pretty much everyone else attending the annual Tattoos & Blues convention at Santa Rosa’s Flamingo hotel: “You pay what the man asks.”
A tattoo is permanent. It’s no time to be a cheapskate. Quality costs — by the hour, usually.
Lesson No. 3? The body reacts to pain — not always unpleasantly.
Adrenaline, endorphins, they can be a real rush — though not always enough to erase the sting.
But for many of those gathered for the start of this year’s three-day ink fest, now in its 25th year, there’s ecstasy in the agony — a kind of therapeutic venting of anxiety and personal torment. “Addicting” is a term used often by those with multiple tattoos.
“It reminds me that I’ve been in a helluva lot more pain in the past,” said Elizabeth Wages, 34, of Rohnert Park, whose body bears the memories of her parents and grandparents in images that she understands. “It’s a moving on. It’s a healing process.”
For someone like Sonoma resident Michael Calas, 30, who spent Friday afternoon in severe discomfort as Shotsie Gorman used the whole of Calas’ hip and thigh to depict the 1521 death of Conquistador Ferdinand Magellan at the hands of a Filipino tribal leader, pain “is just the price of the artistry.”Calas, who already has an inked portrait of his Filipino grandpa on his shoulder, and his grandmother on his upper chest, said the new piece is a symbol of the “constant struggle” his ancestors have endured.“This is me, as an adult, trying to link up with my culture, being able to display my heritage,” he said between grimaces.Patrons of the three-day event, now in its 25th […]