Neck tattoos and the power of words

A lot of you have probably seen the article on Jezebel where a woman tells her version of events when she was turned down for a neck tattoo. If you haven’t seen it, you can have a look here.

The artist in question, Dan Blythewood, wrote a very even and well thought out reply to the incident and the article that was written about him.

Anonymous submission to BME

The reality is, none of us were there, so we can’t know for sure what went down. The problem, all too often, is that someone has an experience that was negative or that didn’t go their way and they take to the Internet to trash the business or person. All of us has had a bad experience somewhere I’m sure and maybe sometimes we can recognize that we were being unreasonable ourselves. If I’m being honest, I can think of times when I reacted poorly to a situation and the business/worker wasn’t really at fault. Trashing the business or person online can have serious repercussions and that’s something we should all consider before we exact our online revenge for some slight, real or imaginary. We are attacking a person’s livelihood or, in the case of a shop, attacking the livelihood of several people. Our words are powerful and if people choose to react immediate to one version of events, they can seriously harm a business. Sometimes our words are wholly justified but maybe it’s a good idea to think on it and take at least 24 hours to decide if this is worth the wrath of the Internet or if maybe we handled the situation poorly. All that said, I don’t know Dan at all, but I do know that the policy of not tattooing hands, necks and faces on people who are not already heavily tattooed or otherwise set in their life path where visible tattoos won’t hamper their future, is a common policy and one that many professional artists apply to all sexes.  At the end of the day, personally, I’d rather see an artist who has ethics than one who will just take my money and do whatever I want, regardless of how foolish or detrimental it may turn out to be. (Please note, I’m not calling visible tattoos foolish in this instance because I happen to think they’re beautiful however I do believe it’s foolish to not consider the long term consequences of something so visible.)

I’m sure there are many who could write far more eloquently on this topic than I can but those are my thoughts and I have a hard time believing things went down as described by the person seeking a tattoo. At the end of the day, she got her tattoo elsewhere and I’m not sure why she felt it necessary to take to the Internet to not only trash the artist but mock his work as well. Please leave your comments and thoughts below but please also remember to be respectful. Name calling (either way) is not helpful and doesn’t invite further discussion.

Note: The photo at the top of this article is not of anyone involved in either article. The photo was submitted anonymously to BME.

Modified Political Candidate James Harrison Nixon

Long shot or not, you don’t see many visibly modified folks running for a political office. I’d like you all to meet James Harrison Nixon.

Who could say no to this face?

Who could say no to this face?

“James Harrison Nixon is a normal person that cares for his state. A average working man that truly stands for the people in his district as well as Georgia”

James is running for Georgia Senate District 30 right now. No matter what the outcome and no matter what your political affiliation might be it is really great to see someone pushing the limits of what it is “acceptable” for the heavily modified to accomplish.

I think James is quite brave for throwing himself into such a tough market and I’m here to give him two major thumbs up. Good luck dude!

You can check out his campaign page here

By The Way…Hello!

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I figure an introduction is in order!

My name is Coyote and I’m a new author for Modblog! You might remember me from These old Modblog entries, or as the old creator of the IAM: Bodies forum. I’m also a professional piercer of three years. My ultimate goal is to be a good torch carrier and continue the amazing legacy left by previous authors. Here is a bit more on why I wanted to write for Modblog.

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This logo changed my life, just as it did for many of you reading this. I am 23 years old but when I first discovered BME and Modblog as a young teen it was earth shattering. At the time I wasn’t friends with anyone in the modification community and I lived in a small town in Pennsylvania. I never really thought  a place like BME  existed in my wildest dreams and probably learned more about myself in three hours of reading blog entries than I did the last three years of my life. Not everything posted was exactly my cup of tea but I understood the drive behind it. I learned that body modification encompasses a lot of different things, and I tried to be the best student I could.

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Before BME

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After BME

I believe in BMEzine and in this community and I also believe Modblog is an invaluable resource for young people in similar situations as I was once in to learn and grow.  I feel that I am emotionally and spiritually obligated to contribute and give back what I have been given for so many years. One can only hope to be able to inspire the same sense of wonder and passion in someone that the previous contributors did for me.

 I’m extremely excited to be a part of Modblog, and I’d like to thank everyone for having me here!

Atypical Facial Tattoos

Facial modifications are probably my favorite kind of body mod — and facial tattoos my favorite kind of tattoo — because they are by far the most aggressive way of pushing the an individual’s personal sense of who they want to be into the social reality. And inside facial tattoos, there are a million different ways of a person expressing themselves, but what I find especially interesting is when the individual does it in a way that breaks the normal rules of tattooing, drawing from outside it’s normal lexicon, or making decisions that are not the most obviously aesthetically acceptable. In this entry I wanted to show a few people who I think have done fascinating things with the way they’ve chosen to recreate themselves.

First is the amazing Rene van Assema (here with Debbie von B), who’s psychedelic facial work has been featured before:

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Next another old BME friend, Jason Sand (who’s currently exploring the world on foot — contact him to get involved in a great project).

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Another interesting facial tattoo is on Las Vegas’s Kirtus Blue:

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Speaking of Blue, there’s Australia’s Paul Bluey:

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I could go on forever, and I think I shall in a future post, but I’ll finish for now with Anthony Green of Cholet, France:

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Roland Zwicknapp Wallpaper

At the other end of the spectrum of heavily modified people, you’ve got people like Roland Zwicknapp of Visavajara (visavajara.com). He’s let me share this gorgeous portrait shot of him a few years ago by Ethan Oelman. Click the image below to see it uncropped, or save it from this link for a desktop wallpaper sized image.

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Demonic Update

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).

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Lesya Toumaniantz Photo Gallery

By now, either from ModBlog or from viral media, you know the romantic story of Lesya and Rouslan Toumaniantz (click that link if you live under a rock) and all the fuss that her facial tattoo of his name across her face generated, a tattoo they did not long after their love-at-first-sight meeting. I wanted to share these recent photos of the healed tattoo — say what you want about the story behind the tattoo, but wow, Lesya really makes this tattoo work! It looks great on her — of course it helps that she’s beautiful and photogenic to start — and you can click any of these photos to see them at a large size.

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Every month is Movember!

Adding onto his already epic chrome mohawk, chrome sideburns, full fire-and-water headpiece, and Wutang beard, Whitey Black just had Justin Mccroy of Under the Needle Tattoo in Seattle create this permanent oldschool handlebar mustache tattoo. He explained it to me saying, “the comical aspect is that ‘nothing says classy like a gentleman with a well groomed mustache’… and believe me I am not classy and far from being a gentleman!”

The tattoo is fresh in this photo, which is why there’s some fluid beading up on it (either that or Whitey just sneezed) — click the picture for a closer look.

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While I’m talking about Whitey’s work, let me show you his scalp tattoo, also by Justin, because it’s so bold I don’t think I could live with myself without including it in this post!

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Jester’s New Face

Jester Mayhone (facebook.com/Jestermayhone) is one of those very rare individuals who has chosen to undergo a concept transformation — where the majority of his modifications all work together push him toward a new total-body artistic vision. Other well known individuals on the short list of those who’ve done include The Lizardman, The Enigma, and the late Dennis Avner. If you’d like to learn more about Jester and his art, both his body and his paintings, you can here’s an earlier more extensive post, but the short version is that he’s using tattoos and other body modifications to evolve himself into his vision of a jester.

Jester jokes that yesterday he had the “best Valentines day ever” as he headed down to see his friends at Tomah Tattoo who, after sketching various ideas on his face freehand (based on designs Jester had spent weeks drawing on photos of himself), decided to go ahead and set it in ink. Only the start of the linework is done now, but when it’s finished it’ll be colored in with random patches — the mock-up I drew is there to illustrate what it might become and is just a quick “what if” Photoshop job. For me the design brings to mind many themes — I see everything from Jester’s main theme to horror movie masks, patched-together scarecrow and ragdolls, and even a bit of Frankenstein’s monster!

Zoom in for a larger view. Once his entire body is done like this, he will be one of the most striking and uniquely tattooed creatures walking the planet.

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