Peony and Parakeet

Designing a Tattoo

Tattoo, tree branch, by Peony and ParakeetLast spring my friend asked if I could design a tattoo for her.

A tattoo! An image that you can’t remove, at least not easily! And so personal one. That really is a challenge, I thought. I should not do it. No. Yes. I should try to!

It was my friend’s first tattoo. She had been wanting it for years. She told me she wanted a tree or a branch. That’s where the design process began.

I drew sketches and asked questions. Should it be strong, edgy, round, feminine? Full of leaves or bare? Ornamental or simple? And so on. I knew I had to trust on the design process and let each of the phase take me closer to the end result.

When the process went on, I began to draw sketches on computer. Adobe Illustrator is a great program for this kind of work.

Between computer work I printed the design and continued with handdrawn details. Finally every little detail had been finetuned with computer and the design was finished.

Tattoo, a design process

Tattoo, tree branch, by Peony and ParakeetThe finished design was presented to the tattoo artist. She changed the thinnest lines stronger so that they would last.

The tattoo is located on the arm. I am glad my friend loves it and I like it too. It represents a lot of her style but I can still recognize it to be my work of art too.

What an exciting project!

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