Tattoos speak volumes about the people that showcase them. Inspiration can come from loved ones, favored media, ideologies, and even humor in some cases. On one end of the spectrum it’s not uncommon to see lack of inspiration with what can be referred to as “Flash Tattoos,” which are the stereotypical designs typically displayed on the walls of tattoo parlors, or on the many individuals that have them. On the other end, there is a plethora of unique and artistic depictions that bring with them a story. Here are a few of my friends and their sweet nerdy tattoos:
Jose Soto and His Dragon Crest
This one comes to us from a very close friend of mine, Jose. Back in the mid 1990’s there was a huge surge of “Nerd Gangs” that would form over similar interests and mainly populate local arcades. In the beginning these factions were mostly non-violent, but as territorial conflicts arose, the culture became more severe. Since these groups didn’t want to be confused with the well known east/west coast gangs that dawned specific color themes, they decided it would be better to use tattooed symbols to pledge their allegiance. Jose was part of of a clique called the “Twin Dragons,” who were revered for their fierce grip a number of neighborhoods throughout Marrero, LA.
Obviously, the real story is that Jose, being an artist himself, personally designed the piece to represent aspects of his personality (internal conflict, and the ability to adapt). Among his online friends he was known through the handle of “Dragon,” a mythical creature that he has always retained a passion for.
Mary Silva and Her Creepy Crawlies
From young age, Mary dreamed of taking the shape of small insects in order to spy on her family members. She had good reason to believe that they had plans to trade her to the next traveling circus that came through town. Through extensive research both through Wikipedia and outdoor field testing she remained confident that the answer to selective insect transformation was right in front of her. Finally, after years of trial and error, she developed a hypothesis that involved the tattooing of her desired transformations, and completing a series of rigorous alchemic formulas would bring her to her goal. Positive results have yet to be confirmed
It’s equally possible that Mary’s die-hard love for the video game series, Animal Crossing, played a significant role in her inspiration for this piece. One of the side objectives in each of these games is to catch seasonal insects both for profit and historical preservation. Mary claims to have chosen her favorite insects from the game, asking her tattoo artist to copy those designs exactly. From what we see here, some stunning features were added in the process.
Joseph Jude Estrade: Laelaps and the Teumessian Fox
Courtesy of Randy Mueller at Eye Candy Tattoo
Okay, so i’m going to be totally serious about this one because it’s really badass. So…this giant, ferocious fox was terrorizing the city of Thebes, killing people and livestock. The citizens tried their best to catch it, but it turns out that the fox’s destiny was to never be caught. Thus, the people of Thebes called upon a famed dog named Laelaps, whose destiny, as you may have guessed, was to catch anything it chased. Laelaps chased the fox across the entire world until the fox was cornered. Zeus was called upon to make a judgement of fate, but perplexed by the paradox of the conflicting destinies, he turned them both into stone and cast them into the stars as Canis Major and Canis Minor where they could continue their chase for all eternity…shit.
I feel compelled to mention that 6 years ago, Joseph also attended a party in downtown New Orleans. Not realizing what the theme of the party was before he arrived, he was surprised to see the guests wearing what seemed to be sexualized animal costumes, two in particular were a fox and a dog. After 4 hours Joseph had seen enough, and hasted to make his leave. However, just as he was reaching for the front door to exit, a man called out to him by his first name. When Joe turned around, a man in a toga and a long grey fake beard said to him, “so you’re okay with the newsletter going to your billing address?” Honestly when you get down to it, it’s a classic chicken and egg situation.
Me and My Moogle Scene
Courtesy of Michael Bogle at Eye Candy Tattoo
Kingdom Hearts is my favorite video game. Moogles are my favorite creature from Final Fantasy. Nuff said.