Liberation

My new friend, Anthony, is a  young body piercer and talented guitar player from Pittsburgh, PA. When I asked him what inspired him to get pretty extensive  facial work at such a young age (19) this was his response:

I decided to take the step of tattooing my face after a lot of thought. It ended with the result that no job, person, parent, or social stigma should be allowed to have higher authority over my own body then I do. The everyday battle for control over your own body is unimaginable. It seems to be able to modify yourself in any way you must first endure a showering of opinions, discouragement and pressure. So to break free from that is something to be said for anybody who modifies themselves.

Before getting it done I looked deep inside myself and meditated on the decision for a long while before iI knew that it was right. Since the day it was done I have felt like it should have been there all along, and I have never felt more spiritually in tune with myself.

Its a liberating experience, I recommend it to anyone!

face27

Facial work by  Neil Reitan in Spring Lake Park, MN.

For 2 more pics of Anthony’s facial work including what could very well be Modblog’s goofiest facial expression of 2010, keep on keeping on.

face1

face3

84 thoughts on “Liberation

  1. should have got sunglasses. that tattoo is stupid i hope someone paid him a lot of money to get that.

  2. I think Dan was making a joke about the sunglasses facial tattoo from the other day

    More on topic, looks great

  3. ding ding. naz wins the prize. of having an iq over 50!

    i do actually like this tattoo a lot

  4. Also I hope some day I will have the balls to tattoo my face, but as of right I think i’ll have hand tattoos as my “riskiest” tattoo

  5. I worked as a piercer in Minnesota, I had some personal stuff happen and now I’m at my parents house where I’m originally from (Pittsburgh) before I head to New York to try my hand at finding a shop! The script is the mantra “Om Mani Padme Hum”

  6. Props on getting a beautiful facial tattoo at at young age…
    Do you shave your eyebrows?

  7. They look amazing!

    I agree though, I got my eyebrow dots tattooed on shortly after I turned 18 and it was still to this day the best decision I’ve ever made.

  8. I pluck them ahaha. I’ve been known to get really lazy and just use the single blade side of my fusion razor though haha! Thanks for the nice words everyone!

  9. That is so cute, both the expression and the tattoos, love it. wish i had the guts to do it ):

  10. good for you except,you are young and i hope you dont regret them when your older,i dont regret my having one side of my face scared but i did get alot of shit on here about it because it look like i copied the moki people facial tattoos

  11. What shop did you pierce at i live in Mn and wish you were still around so i could see this awesome ink live

  12. @ TKO- who cares? it makes him happy. thats like saying “hey i realize you like having a nose, but it bends a bit to the left. when are you going to get rhinoplasty?”

  13. you see, this is facial work I respect more than the glasses, because thought has gone into this and it has meaning etc. the glasses are just a joke which will wear old fast. This is beautiful.

  14. I was going to whole heartedly agree, heh at least its not raybans… but dan has that covered, and same with nic, props. I think it’s really nice, when the title is LIBERATION is that solely because Anthony discussed how a facial tattoo meant no one had a higher authority over him or is that what the script says? I’d love to know his personal mantra, do you know if he’d be colouring his chin/lotus or leaving it solid black lines? go big or go home right?

  15. @David – I fail to see how *someone else’s* mods, or reasons for them, have any relevance to *your* career goals.

    @Anthony Black – Not only do the tats look great; your story behind them is well thought out and eloquent.

  16. My chin is finished. I do however have plans to work a bit more on the lotus and everything. I don’t see me adding any other color though, just more black.

    As for fixing the linework a bit, I can find the tiniest little flaws in any of my tattoos. It needs touched up a bit but overall I’m content as is =]

  17. @Anthony I understand, touch-ups my leg piece has some light spots that I’m looking to fix even though I’m the only one who can really see it, I take pride in wanting something that cost li’l pain/money I don’t have/time/effort of not myself but my artist to look as good as it can–I like it in just black too just really liked how the red pops so vividly and didn’t know if you’d be bringing in other colours, I wasn’t hating on the line work, I just didn’t know if this was a first session of many or what–anyway congrats on being so commited to being your own man

  18. Wow, props to this guy. I really like the design and placement. I wish I was this courageous. I’ve been obsessed with body mods for years and I’ve still never even stepped foot into a shop.

  19. a side note. If you are buddhist, putting that sacred text on your body is extremely disrespectful. The body is of Samsara, inherenyly flawed and dirty, and to use sacred symbols in this way lessens their impact.

    Now, if you aren’t a practicing buddhist, it doesnt realy matter in the slightest.

    I still like this, quite a bit

  20. lol well it’s like I always say, if money is the root of all evil why do americans even think about putting gods name on their currency especially in a time where so few share the same faith? and if he’s buddhist he knows nothing is truly permanent and everything is constantly changing–and what about the japanese theory of wabisabi and the flaws making things beautiful? i.e: crack in the liberty bell, yarr, I think its pretty

  21. Bad linework, poor weight, and a crooked design. He’s obviously not old enough to choose a facial tattoo since he can’t choose quality.

    Anyway, if “parents” are still something you worry about (and I hear this dude still lives with his parents), you are too young to tattoo your face. BME should not be supporting this, it should be reminding kids that at 19 they are too young for this decision because they don’t have enough life context for the wisdom required.

    He will almost surely regret these tattoos, either because he realizes that he didn’t want a facial tattoo forever, or because he realizes it’s shit quality. :( :( :(

  22. thumbs up dude! i love my facial tattoo, and ive never had a bad comment about it, wear it proud man!!

  23. Amazing. Most mature for a 19-year old. I love the reasoning behind the tattoo, it puts the usual “you’re going to regret this when you’re 60″ type comments to shame.

  24. I think facial tattoos are great I have some myself…but doesn’t anybody think that 19 is a lil too young to get such extensive work? Like I am 26 and I have full sleeves and my hands as well as my face…but it is very limiting for work. I am also a piercer and while I love piercing it doesn’t always last forever but that ultra cool hardcore face tattoo will.

    I just think this young man is setting himself up for a life of job hunting and difficult situations.

    Does anyone not agree with that?

  25. I think facial tattoos are great I have some myself…but doesn’t anybody think that 19 is a lil too young to get such extensive work? Like I am 26 and I have full sleeves and my hands as well as my face…but it is very limiting for work. I am also a piercer and while I love piercing it doesn’t always last forever but that ultra cool hardcore face tattoo will.

    I just think this young man is setting himself up for a life of job hunting and difficult situations.

    Does anyone not agree with that?

  26. Brass – That is the general argument anytime that someone young gets a visible mod. Obviously it does limit the work you can do but it completely depends on the person. There are some people who wouldn’t be able to get any job even if they didn’t have any work done and then there are the strong and smart people who find their niche in the world and succeed despite the set backs.

  27. ” succeed despite the set backs.”

    maybe the real lesson isn’t to succeed despite them, but to not make ones for you to have to overcome?

  28. ” succeed despite the set backs.”

    maybe the real lesson isn’t to succeed despite them, but to not make ones for you to have to overcome?

  29. ” succeed despite the set backs.”

    maybe the real lesson isn’t to succeed despite them, but to not make ones for you to have to overcome?

  30. yes and no. it’s more of a scenario where he’s probably going to be happier searching for work than being stuck in an office without the tattoo.

    love the tattoo as well.

  31. I really like this guys tattoos, but I’m certainly wondering about his age. I got extensive tattoo work done from the ages of 18 and 22 that at the time seemed really well thought out and planned that now I completly regret. The best of luck to him though!

  32. I think it’s fantastic that he feels more in touch with himself after making this decision. Wouldn’t it be great if we could all find our own path? Especially when he’s so young.
    Great!
    :)

  33. Joder , la mejor puta razon que he leido en años y hoy mismo he estado pensando en lo mismo, quien tiene mas poder sobre nuestro propio cuerpo??? dios?? los padres?? la sociedad?? la novia??? Nuestro cuerpo es solo nuestro, siempre.

    I like that decision

  34. #40, i don’t think that putting this mantra on yoru body is disrespectful. this mantra and many others are very often written as well as vocalized (using the body). these syllables’ very existence is a product of samsara. although this realm is impure, there exists within it (and as a product of it) means towards “purifying” your consciousness and escaping it.

    PS #41, the phrase is “The love of money is the root of all evil” (1 Timothy 6:10). money is not inherently evil it’s just paper

  35. >>>”#40, i don’t think that putting this mantra on yoru body is disrespectful. this mantra and many others are very often written as well as vocalized (using the body). these syllables’ very existence is a product of samsara. although this realm is impure, there exists within it (and as a product of it) means towards “purifying” your consciousness and escaping it.”

    if you were a practicing Buddhist, you’d know more than you “think” you do. Think all you want.. These symbols aren’t decoration you simply find on your yoga mats, and any practicing Buddhist knows this.

  36. @anthony… how can you possibly compare tattoos and touch ups to noses and rhinoplasty? what a horribly ineffective argument.
    some of my tattoos “make me happy” but still need to be touched up or fixed.

  37. #58 Good sense.
    I haven’t come across these ideas in the sect of Buddhism I practice (Soto Zen). I don’t believe it is inherently disrespectful to get any sacred symbol tattooed upon oneself and I find my “flawed and dirty” body to be quite useful for practising Buddhism in this life: “what is form is pure and what is pure is form” (from the Scripture of Great Wisdom).
    Wonderful tattoo – looks beautiful :)

  38. ayour tattoo looks great. I have been thinkng of getting some facial ink. Sideburns and chin.
    Best wishes for 2010. InkManLarry

  39. I love Anthony and all that he does. Splendid! I’m proud of you, little guy! ;p Oh, and kbi has got it right; your second picture is just delightful!

  40. Gorgeous!
    What i think I like better than the tattoo is the words and reasoning behind it. Well said and well thought upon!!!

  41. emma- even getting a tattoo is an act of self-cherishing… one of the great distractions. if you knew anything at all about buddhism, other than the books you bought at Barnes and Noble, you’d know that what you wrote is bullshit.

    strive to get rid of your attachments, first and foremost your self-cherishing to your self and identity.

  42. Wow, I actually met this kid I few months ago in Best Buy (i live in Minnesota), it was weird, I walked into the store, and Wolfmother was playing an acoustic set for the Grand Re-Opening of that Best Buy. Anyways, he was a super cool dude, I remember he recognized my Body Art Forms hoodie, and he struck up a conversation with me. I really like this new facial work, it’s really beautiful. It sounds like he’s gonna get to do some traveling (NYC), so I hope that goes well for him.

  43. I got my first facial tattoo when i was 23 and it was the most LIBERATING feeling I have ever felt. Now i have one more at 25 and life is only getting better. When you decide to make that choice, you know you will never settle for anything less then whats right for you. My jobs are only getting better and life rules.

    Hells yes I love face ink!

  44. any think you do in term of existing in samsara is attachmetn including eating but you can’t just stop. buddhism is often called the middle path

  45. Exactly – one may potentially become overly attached to getting tattoos of sacred symbols or on the other hand, overly attached to the idea that no Buddhists must ever get tattoos of sacred symbols. I haven’t come across many shoulds or absolutes in my experience of Buddhism so far. But that’s just my experience and opinion among many!

  46. if you follow a path, or a tradition, there are absolutes, if you’re just picking up books, taking a few classes or talking it over with friends, you aren’t even a practicing Buddhist. Buddhists take vows, many of them, along their path. there ARE rules, and absolutes. It’s not some sort of hippie ideal..its a TRADITION.

    it’s amazing how people with such shallow knowledge of a subject can seem to think they have such a strong grasp of it.

    get a clue

  47. Jim, That’s awesome that you remembered that! That was only a couple months ago but so much has changed since then its unreal. I hope you’re doing well man!

  48. I just watched a documentary about a group of Buddhist monks in Thailand who tattoo themselves and others with sacred symbols as a means of protection. I surely don’t claim to know anything about Buddhism but I gather that, just like any other religion, there are different forms with their own set of beliefs.

  49. damn ian, you’re really an expert, huh? you seem to know exactly what everybody should do. i only wish you had been around in the time of gautama buddha, you could have set him straight as well. he wasn’t even a practicing buddhist.

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