Suz wrote me with some pretty pictures of a series of stripes that Blair branded around her already very scarred left arm. I’ve seen other self-harm reclamation pieces that Blair has done, where he’s done scarification over top of scars that the wearer has mixed feelings about, so I asked Suz a little more about it and she was kind enough to write back,
I had been self harming for years and it wasn’t going to be possible to tattoo over. I had originally thought of skin peels as I have some done by Sammpa that turned out nicely. However, when i got chatting to Blair we decided to go for Hyfrecator branding as I was only visiting Canada, and the chance of infection would’ve been too high with a skin peel.
It was complete fluke that I met Blair too — I got directed to New Tribe when I was over in Canada two years ago and Blair happened to be working that day. He saw my arm and we got chatting about me getting some work done, and, next thing I know it’s a year later and we have a design pretty much planned and I’m flying back over to see him! It was an experience I’ll never forget. I’ve got a substantial amount of mods but I’ve never had one that has completely changed my outlook on my body and how people perceive me.
There are more pictures after the break including some very sore looking fresh ones. The thing I really love about this type of work is that it takes something with negative connotations and transforms it into something beautiful, but without covering it up or being “dishonest” about life’s history (not that there’s anything wrong with the cover-up route either).