I’ve posted lots and lots of tattoos that move with the body, be it simple fluidity, tattoos that change their form or meaning with the body’s position, or even “animated” tattoos like the pussy finger gag tattoo from earlier today. This example though is done in skin removal scarification, by Natalia Carrascosa or Blue Tattoo Gava in Barcelona. The client, an exotic animal enthusiast, designed the piece (with a little fine-tuning by Natalia) to echo the eyes of a puma. The first photo is fresh (as if you can’t tell), and the second photo shows it on the left at just over a month into the healing, and on the right at just under a year.
Last February Brian Decker (purebodyarts.com) cut this amazing piece of scart (hmm… that doesn’t sound appealing… I need a better term), and now a year later it’s beautifully healed. What can I say about it? It’s stunning, one of my favorite pieces in some time.
An absolutely beautiful owl scarification design well into its healing, done by Brendan Russell (facebook.com/brendan.russell.35) of Tribal Urge in Newcastle, NSW. I like the design because it’s quite complex, but at the same time, its simple shapes and repeating patterns keep it visually clean and strong from a graphic design point of view, which should give it a long life even as the scar fades over time.
I have been watching this humpback whale scar by Brenno Alberti of BodyFactory in Trieste, Italy with great pleasure. First of all, because he’s pumped up the normal cutting over blackwork effect by a level by rubbing the cutting with white ink — I suspect this will be differentiated from normal cutting by the detail in the finer parts of the linework — but more importantly because I just love the design and it’s pristinely cut. By the way, sometimes it just amazes me how quickly scars heal — it looks so great on day three — but I suspect that with this piece the white ink is creating a bit of an illusion.
By the way, I don’t have an ink rubbing of a humpback whale, but believe-it-or-not, but I have rubbed a humpback whale. Click the pic for a closer look.
Over five years ago I posted a photo of this incredible full-back hanya mask skin removal scarification by cross-spectrum body modification master Thorsten Sekira, then at Modified World in Munich, Germany, but now at Silver Studio (silverstudio.at) in Vienna, Austria. As is not surprising, the piece has healed evenly and without complication. Given the chaotic nature of the background, it’s impressive that it stands out as well as it does — and if you compare the picture posted in 2007 with these two pictures (posted a short while apart, as you can tell because the one on the right has additional tattooing), the wearer has been slowly filling in the background with ink, keeping the hanya mask as negative space so the scar will continue to grow more prominent as their body art evolves.
I’m only giving you a tiny glimpse into his large body of work, but another related scar that Thorsten did is this Kirin (a deer-like dragon for lack of a better introduction to its rich and complex mythology which you can search out for yourself), on untattooed skin this time, and using more traditional cutting rather than heavy-lined skin removal. In these photos it is of course healed, and again, you can see that it is nice and consistent, even though it’s on skin that experiences significant movement and abuse and can be quite difficult to get ideal results on.
As I mentioned, Thorsten is one of those guys that’s capable of anything — piercings, suspension, implants, ear reconstruction, scarification, and even tattooing. I say “even” tattooing because it’s not uncommon to find piercers who are into other mods, but most of the time there’s a real line between the tattoo world and the rest of the modification world. To be honest, it’s probably one of our biggest problems as a subculture. On that note I want to finish off with a silly little tattoo he poked — I’m sure it’s obvious, but this is German for “right” and “left”. For those forgetful, always-getting-lost sorts I suppose? Unfortunately it only works in sandals with carefully chosen strap designs. Oh, and I like the subtle typographical touch of slightly deviating the baseline of the text so as to make it look like it’s been shaken (or stomped) a bit out of place.
This week’s follow-up was actually supposed to be up last week, but thanks to some technical difficulties it had to be put off a week. Today’s scar was cut about 3 months ago by Richard ‘Effin’ Ivey, and features everybody’s favorite non-bear bear.
So that’s how it looked fresh, and here’s how it looks today…
Now Richard is moving to the west coast in a few weeks, so those of you looking to get work done while he’s still in Raleigh, NC should book a spot now. Hopefully we’ll still continue to get updates of healing scars after Rich moves.
The beauty of scarification is that the end result can never be fully predicted. Sure you can get an idea of what a scar is going to look like if you have scars already, but even then there are so many variables that can affect healing. Sometimes you’ll get a scar that is perfectly defined and with the colouration you were hoping for. Other times your body just says, “hey, this is how I’m going to heal this scar, deal with it”. The reason I’m bringing this up is based off of IAM:Polareyez‘ comment on the latest photo of her snail scar. To give you a bit of backstory, the scar (which is actually a combination cutting/branding by Brian Decker), started out as all scars do, as an open wound.
A few months later, it was well into the healing process and was turning a pale pink colour.
And now here we are today, 10 months since the initial cutting and as you can see, it’s lightened up even more.
You may need to move your monitor around to see it, but it’s there. What’s worth noting is that even though this isn’t the exact colouration that Polareyez was going for, the details Brian put into the scar are still well defined. I’d even go so far to say that it’s looking a lot better than it did several months ago, if only for the consistent colour. Fans of pale scars will certainly appreciate this scar. As I mentioned earlier, scarification isn’t something that can be predicted with 100% accuracy, but that shouldn’t discourage you from committing to a scar if that’s the modification you’re looking to get. You never know, you may end up with something that surpasses your expectations.
Continuing with today’s shark theme we have this scarification by Misty Forsberg (IAM:Southtownbaby). You can find Misty most days at Southtown Tattoo and Body Piercing Studio in Fort Smith, AZ, or over on Hooklife. This scar is actually the second scar she worked on and it’s located on someone’s stomach.
Here’s another beautiful example of combining a well healed piece of scarification with tattooing to both enhance it and extend its lifetime. For the first year or two, a scar is usually quite defined just by its color, if not how much it has raised. However, as time goes by, the color of a scar lightens, and the raised effect diminishes, and in some cases it can be quite difficult to make out — at least in comparison to how it looked when it was young (the same is true for my entire physique, I’m afraid to admit, but let’s not depress ourselves). Adding tattooing is a superb way to revitalize that scar, as in this great example of abstract swirls of colour bringing out this lion scarification by Alejandro Hernandez Salazar of San Luis Potosi, Mexico, who works out of Tattoos by Spooky.
Brian Decker (purebodyarts.com) who did this scarification, admits that he didn’t know what a Leafy Sea Dragon was before doing the cutting, so I think I’ll use this as an excuse to tell you because it’s really a remarkable creature. It’s very much like a sea horse, which is a type of sea horse that hides with it’s extreme anatomical camouflage, drifting peacefully among plants that it looks very much like. It moves using two tiny and almost transparent fins, one on its neck and one near the tail, with the rest waving in the breeze as if they were vegetation. To survive it sucks up tiny shrimp, plankton, and larval fish through its anteater-like snout. It’s flamboyant yet serene body makes it a perfect image to capture in body art. I got to see them in person at the Monterrey Bay Aquarium when Barry of Anatometal took us, if memory serves, and they’re quite wonderful.
Above the scar by Brian, and below, the amazing lifeform it mimics.