Tattoos – How do you judge a book?

Those are the words Dermablend used to kick this video off. It’s an interesting question. Many people see Rick Genest as a freak, but having coming from the tattoo world, i admire the art and technique of his artist and also happen to think he is exquisitely beautiful. This is not only my view, but Thierry Mugler and Lady Gaga obviously agree! There was a lot of debate about this guy in the tattoo studio – some admire his courage and others just don’t get it (mostly clients). But how many of you have been discriminated against for the way you look? Do you like to fit in or stand out? Do you have any tattoos yourself? If so, are you proud of them or do you regret them? Lastly, do you judge people who are a little different or do you embrace them?

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25 thoughts on “Tattoos – How do you judge a book?

  1. Do you know I’d never heard of Rick Genest before? I probably wouldn’t mind though, he’s quite pretty.

    I only regret not having a tattoo, I never seem to have money to spare. I got an Edinburgh performance to pay for next year!

    • It is surprising because he seems to be everywhere at the moment!

      Maybe one day, lady Swan, eh? What would you get if you did?

      Oooh! What’s happening in Edinburgh, If you don’t mind me asking?

      • Yes one day…I like Victorian style vines as they remind me of ghost stories, so maybe something similar

        Well, next August we’re doing a comedy show at the Edinburgh Fringe. On the one hand its very exciting, and on the other I wake in the night thinking, what am I doing? I’m sure it will be fine…

      • Something a little bit Poe inspired, perhaps? I am a huge fan of Victorian design and you can add it to so many traditional styles to add interest. Very cool.

        Ah-ha! We were thinking about taking a wee toddle up to the Fringe next year. It would be brilliant to come over and see you. I showed Braintree Ways to my fiance and he loved it! Ach, you’ll be fine, Mrs. Do you have your act planned yet?

  2. I love tatoos mainly because of the creativity involved and also I am intrigued by the people that will commit to a potentially lifetime wearing of the same art day after day. I could not commit to something for that long of a period of time:) I do not have a tatoo but both of my children do. They have many. My son has a sleeve, art he created himself, using a tatoo artist friend to implement it on his skin. My daughter has many as well, mainly dedicated to renderings of lost family members and pets with the few odd images of her personal animal guides.
    Standing out is preferable to fitting in; people that are not mainstream are far more interesting than those that do fit into the “mainstream society”. However, I find that the more time goes on, the more common it is to see multiple tatoos and piercings. Did you know that once upon a time, tatoos were for the less desirable members of society, relegated to the same taboos as a pool hall, beer joints and honky tonks:) I’ve seen some pretty high end pool halls in the past 20 years…times are changing, moving towards acceptance and embracing creativity more than shunning it.

    • A lot of people don’t appreciate the laborious process that can go into the initial design, even before a needle touches the skin. It’s refreshing to meet someone who appreciates that! I have always been quite careful about what i put on my body and even though the designs are not exactly what i would want now, they were all put there for a reason. A right of passage, a big change, like your daughter, a memorial piece or two and tributes to bands (mostly morrissey) and the like. When i look back, every one of them means something to me so there are no regrets whatsoever because of that. I agree completely about standing out, but i was wondering about the extremes in subculture and if there really is much of that left now? I wanted to get everyone’s view to test the water, as i have been discussing this with a lot of younger people lately. What is standing out? You’re right, people are getting more and more tattoos and there were some fashionable choices that would come up week after week. David and Victoria Beckham’s work, Rhiana’s stars, Cheryl Cole’s hand tattoo and some of Robbie William’s designs were popular choices, even though i tried my best to suggest something unique, i felt a lot of people did it to ‘fit in’.
      Haha, yes, i did! I know a lot of bikers and punks in their 50s/60s who have had plenty of stories to tell. It’s funny how things have changed so much even in the last 15 years.

  3. I never heard of the guy before I saw this video a few weeks ago. I don’t think of him as a freak, it’s quite fascinating to see someone covered up so complete like that, including the entire head & face.

    • I agree. His work is beautiful, though the skin around the eyes is quite thin. There’s just no way i would be going near there on anyone with a tattoo machine!
      Dermablend is an amazing product and it really does cover that well!

  4. I don’t have any tattoos, but I have piercings, and I love them. It’s always better to stand out than to try to fit in I think. Although there is such a thing as wanting to stand out in order to fit in, if you know what I mean

  5. Hah! I posted something similar on my blog a couple of weeks ago. I have have definitely been discriminated against because of my artwork, however I *generally* don’t mind. If I get a dirty look for the girl working at Nordstroms it doesn’t bother me as I knew that being heavily tattooed is something that people tend to judge one way or another.

    That said I DO cover up when it’s appropriate, mostly for job interviews (to make sure no one is distracted away from my real value as an employee by how I look) and events like funerals where it’s not appropriate to give people the proverbial finger by being myself.

    • I’m glad you commented, as it’s interesting to get a point of view from someone who is heavily inked and feel the same way. I don’t think i ever gave a second’s thought to what other people thought of my work, or me! The way i see it, i choose to stick out and if someone has a problem with it, that’s their issue. I don’t notice if anyone looks at me now and if i do, i just smile at them and tend to get a smile in return.

      Yes. There is a time and a place for displaying yer work and i think people respect you more when you have taken that into consideration, though, i always mention i have tattoos and it usually turns into a lengthy conversation!

  6. I think tattoos are a form of expression and wand this form of expression is just as beautiful as any other. To me, no one has a right to speculate or think they know you when they don’t. Stereotypes really hurt. Speaking from experience since I’ve been stereotyped.

    • Most people don’t like to be pigeonholed but there are a lot of people who are happy in their box and expect others to behave in the same way. There are those of us who can see beauty in the form of self expression, but there will always be those who will bitterly judge others. As long as you are true to yourself, that’s all that matters :) x

  7. I don’t have any tattoos but I people constantly judge me for how I look. I get both positive and negative reactions but I wouldn’t feel like myself if I tried to blend in with the crowd. It’s important to be yourself no matter the reaction. Whether it’s through tattoos, or hairstyles, or piercings, I think expressing yourself is essential to finding out who you are. :)

    • Tattoos are about who i am inside, who i have been and who i will become but my hair… my hair is the most important part of who i am now. It’s very much a part of my identity and have had it bright for over 15 years. When i was about 26, i had a sudden feeling that i needed to grow up, be sensible and dye my hair a ‘normal’ colour. I went light brown. It lasted two days and my old attitude returned. To hell with conventional ideas, i say! In those two days, i was so quiet and didnt feel like myself either. You’re right, of course! I think if you care too much about what other people think, you’d never walk out the front door!

    • Your body is a vehicle. It gets you from A to B and if you treat it well, it will return the favor. You can’t stop the aging process, some people lose and put on weight, often by no fault of their own, most people have children but some people don’t.

      What if you walk in front of a bus and your head is flattened into the tarmac? Life is indeed cruel but it deals far crueler hands than the inevitable physical changes of one’s body. Call it vanity, call it self-expression. It’s up to you.

  8. Pingback: Tattoos – How do you judge a book? « Madame Pipistrelle's Blog

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