Tuesday, August 14, 2012

My Tattoo progression in Pictures

As many of you may already know, I recently went in for my first tattoo. This was a new experience for me and I thought it would be fun to show you the three stages of my particular experience.

Since the design had already been created by the phenomenal Steve Murphy, tattoo artist David Boggins had the stencil ready when I arrived. It was a tad bigger than what I had imagined, though not much. Anyone who knows about tattoos will know that intricate art needs to have a bit of size for the detail to work.

David prepared my back (cleaned and shaved) and then applied the stencil. My wife and I checked it out for size and ultimately decided it was perfect. After cleaning off the stencil and applying it for a second time, we had the positioning right on.

I laid down and David told me the outline was going to hurt the most, though he said the first ten minutes would be the worst. Then he began. I will be completely honest with you--after he dug into my flesh for that first line I wondered how in the hell I was going to withstand another 6-7 hours of what I had just felt.  But, unless I wanted my big tattoo to be a single line, I needed to suck it up. After ten minutes, David asked, "Is it getting any better?"

I answered, "No, it pretty much still sucks."

He was right because a few minutes later I had settled in and the process became somewhat tolerable. David wanted to get the outline finished on the first day and he did, so here is the picture after my initial 2 1/2 hour sitting.

Healing from the outline was pretty unremarkable and within a few days I barely remembered it had been done.

Then came day two about three weeks later. Day two consisted of the shading which we initially hoped would finish the job. David and I both wanted the work to be epic regardless of the time and he gave my tattoo the dedication and love that it needed. Painful love, but love just the same. He quickly reminded me of how much getting tattooed sucked by digging right in. By the second hour mark, I felt pretty good and even commented that I could go all day if needed. But that all changed during the fourth hour. My back was telling me that it had had enough. After almost four hours, David said we probably needed one more sitting and he was done for that day. I wanted to scream, "Thank you," but of course I didn't.

If you are wondering how sore four hours of tattoo shading makes a person, I think you can tell by the following picture. Remember, there had been no red used to this point.

 Here it is after a week.

I made two mistakes going into my third and final session. First, I scheduled it for two weeks later instead of three. The reason two weeks turned out to be a mistake was that my back was still sore when my appointment arrived. The second mistake I made was going to the gym that morning and apparently getting blood flowing to the very area that is going to be assaulted with a needle wasn't a good idea. I struggled a bit during those next two hours, but I made it through.

After a total of 8 1/2 hours I was finished. I couldn't wait to see the final product. Here is a picture from immediately after. I love it. What do you think?

 If you are near Columbus, Ohio and are looking for a tattoo, make sure you check out David Boggins at Body Language. He is a swell guy and a great artist. Like his FB page to see more of his work

Also, don't forget to enter my $50 Amazon gift card contest. Easy to enter, so give it a try. For more details see http://www.epertase.blogspot.com/2012/07/contest-time-50-amazon-gift-card.html or just enter below.


  1. Oh, wow! That's an awesome tattoo!

  2. Thanks all. I love it. I'm ready for another.

  3. Man, this one’s really amazing! What else would be the best tattoo for you? Of course, it’s probably your own creation. It looks great! How long did it take to finish? Are you planning to get another tattoo soon?

    George Cartwright

    1. Thank you. I imagine my next tat will have something to do with the fire dept. I will definitely let Mr. Boggins create something for me when I'm ready. This particular tat took 9 hours in total. Thanks for the comments. I love my tat.