TRIANGUL-R sent in this really cool photo of himself and I just had to share it.
While most implants are still basic shapes or “flash” selected from a limited portfolio (skulls, spiders, biomech ribs, and so on), these days it is possible to get cast custom implants made at a reasonable price and within a reasonable timeframe. Because of that, interesting new markets are starting to evolve that haven’t really existed until now — for example, the person below is a customer of Hugh Mattay’s (fb/hugh.mattay) who has no tattoos and no piercings — just implants! Hugh had already done a finger magnet on him as well as a pair of circular implants on his forearms, but this time he came in with something more complex, a printout of the Fullmetal Alchemist logo (a Japanese manga and video game series), which he wanted to have capped with an eye containing a magnet. Hugh got in touch with Max Yampolskiy (fb/max.yampolskiy) who created this and just three weeks later the customer was getting it implanted in his chest.
I really love that these days people who don’t enjoy the look of tattoos, scars, or piercings — the traditional forms of body art — have this 3D sculpting as a viable alternative. I’m really looking forward to seeing what other projects Hugh and this customer are going to get up to — for example, they’ve discussed stretching his lobes, but using internal implants, without piercings! Below are the Fullmetal Alchemist implant, right after draining 46ml of fluid (eww) (Hugh figures the unusually high amounts of fluid buildup are due to the difficulty of placing the complex shape), and also a picture of the client’s forearm implants.
Back in 2008, ModBlog posted pictures of an incredible nostril and septum resculpting with another entry early in the healing and one more four weeks later. I thought it was about time that an update be posted, since Bogotá, Colombia based tattoo artist, piercer, and alternative model Caim Divell (click here for his fan page) is one of the most remarkable looking people in body modification (and BME’s early entries generated one hell of a lot of debate). As you can see he has reduced the size of his horns, which were at one point the largest forehead implants ever installed, but other than that, his look has continued to evolve. There are very few people who have pushed a concept transformation to this degree, and I would argue that living as a demonic embodiment of metal is socially more challenging than being, say, the Lizardman. As I said, there’s more info on Caim’s surgical modifications in the early posts, but I should mention here that they were created by Emilio Gonzalez (mithostattoo.com).
Jonah Wagner’s girlfriend, Namru La Vey, had a lapis lazuli stone disc, something that she’d treasured for thirteen years before giving it to Jonah, making him swear never to lose it. About three years ago Jonah crossed paths with Steve Haworth (stevehaworth.com) at the BMXnet conference, where he asked Steve whether he could build a a silicone implant around the disc — because lapis contains a wide cross-section of minerals, it’s unlikely that it could be safely implanted without being sheathed in a biocompatible scabbard to isolate it. Steve did some experiments to figure out the best way to cast silicone around the stone, and two years later sent Jonah a large silicone cross with the stone suspended in the center. Because of its size, he had Samppa Von Cyborg help out as well by cutting down the implant slightly so it would be more suited to a hand, and finally the pact was sealed as Jonah’s girlfriend, the original holder and gifter of the stone, implanted the cross into Jonah’s hand (with help from their boss Andrea Venhaus) at the Dortmund, Germany studio they all work at, Deep Metal (deepmetal.de).
The pictures below show the project the day of implantation, in November 2012, and in healed pictures taken a few days ago. Same drill as always — click and for the big pic.
Loran Shumway, piercer and body modification artist at Eclectic Body Art in Olean, NY got a tattoo of one of the many variations on the classic Dr. BME logo on his nape, done this past Monday by Robbie Mills of Something Beautiful in Jamestown, NY. I asked him why this particular version and he explained that he bumped into this one while searching for the original artwork*. Since as a practitioner he enjoys doing lots of implants, “I figured the one with more implants was a better fit for me!” After the picture of his new tattoo is a recent implant he performed, a silicone infinity symbol (from Steve Haworth’s collection), both fresh and a week into the healing.
* Note to other searchers, you can find most of the basic logos by looking up “BME Logo” in the BME wiki, although there are many variations missing… The page is desperately out of date.
Speaking of small implants, another one I saw recently that really struck me was this little tiny martini-glass implant put into his fiancé’s ear by Brendan Russel of Tribal Urge in Newcastle, NSW, Australia. When I first saw it, I actually thought that it was a white ink tattoo, because that’s how it comes off in photos (I’m sure there’s a subtlety to the design that you can only see in person). The implant was hand-carved by Brendan, and is incredibly thin, just 1.5mm (a little smaller than the diameter of a 14ga ring), with the edges all carefully rounded to ensure it doesn’t irritate the sensitive skin of the ear — the only part of the body that you could put something this small into and still have it show.
And speaking of hand-carved martini implants, you may remember this piece which was featured in the ModCon book (so this is from the “early days” of implants). Because this was going in a much fleshier location than the ear, it’s much, much larger, and even at this size it barely shows in its healed state.
I really like this heart-shaped implant at the apex of Anka’s forehead, done by Chai at CALM Body Modification (calmbodymod.com) in Stockholm. Unlike most forehead implants — horns, ridges, and so on — which create alien or fantasy morphology, this implant is much more unique, creating more of an accent or character mark, the sort of thing one would more commonly see from a tattoo. The piece is a few years old in this photo, and was hand-carved out of silicone.
These sorts of bulky, visually striking implants seemed more common about ten years ago, so when I first saw these awesome megaridges done at Adiccion Corporal in Zapopan, Jalisco, Mexico, at first I thought they were old pictures. This impressive forearm ridges are custom carved teflon bars (a harder material than silicone, but much easier to hand-carve), with the large one being 12.5cm long and the smaller one 9.5cm, in 14mm and 12mm diameters respectively. Even though they’re quite large, these are first-generation implants. In the first photo you can see what the bars looked like prior to implanting.
Here’s a great example of combining implants with tattoos. Hugo Ferreira of BIOTECH in Toulouse, France has taken some of Max Yampolskiy’s ring implants and put them into Noss’s hand, augmented with red tattoos that not only match the implants but his knuckles as well. I should add that the tattoos were there before the implant, making Hugo’s job much more difficult, but as you can see he lined them up beautifully.
…but is it a Stormtrooper virtue?
Ever since it was mentioned in September, people ask me regularly what’s going on with the stormtrooper-shaped implant. Unfortunately not much to show yet — the pictures in this entry of Damaris’s hand implant are only three months old, and it’s hard to make out in photos even if you know exactly what you’re looking at. It doesn’t help that right after getting the implant done, Damaris had the bad luck of standing next a women with certain shortcomings of balance, who grabbed her hand to save herself from a fall — “I’ve never felt pain like that before!” — and caused it to shift from it’s originally straight placement. That said, some implants can take a year or more to really show their maximum detail, so it’s not necessarily worrying. I’ll continue to update on the healing of this over time.