Today I awoke to the heartbreaking news that the body modification community has lost one of it’s most beloved members, my good friend, Josh Burdette.
Josh was one of the very first people I met from the online body modification community. When I first moved to Maryland in 2000, I met him at a RAB munch held at a Brazilian BBQ joint. At first I was quite intimidated by him. How could I not have been? He was, hands down, the most modded person I had met in person at that time, not to mention he was absolutely enormous! Within the first hour in his presence all of that intimidation went away and I quickly found him to be one of the nicest human beings ever. Everyone of us there that night shared that sentiment about him and by the time we left that dinner everyone of us called him friend and not a one of us was intimidated by him…….except maybe the owners of the restaurant. The one stereotype he lived up to was the ability to TRULY get his money’s worth at an all you can eat meat buffet!
My next memorable run in with him was at the University of Maryland where Josh, Bruce Wilmot and myself were participants in a Q&A with a group of students about body modification. Josh, stole the show and did an excellent job of representing our community in the best possible light. That wasn’t unusual for Josh at all, that’s just who he was. As the head of security at DC’s famous 9:30 night club every night he managed to make friends, even with the people he had to escort out of the club. Any non-modded person who ever had the privilege of getting to know him could not help but have their prejudices of modded people flipped upside down. For that, we all owe him a debt of gratitude.
Josh’s body mods were not on him, they were him. Each and every mod of his had a story and each and every tattoo had a meaning. He was covered with dragon tattoos representing his Chinese zodiac, the year of the dragon. He had scarification by the late, great Keith Alexander and Ron Garza branded swastikas on his feet, representing the footsteps of the Buddha. Then of course there was his trademark stretched lobes which he pretty much always sported fine organic plugs in, his stretched septum and my personal favorite his perfectly lined up paired bridge piercings.
In the past few years I was lucky enough to become closer with him and that friendship and the insights he shared with me are something I will eternally hold dear. Please use the comments section below to share your thoughts and memories of this beloved character who some of us knew as OBMF, some as “That Guy from the 9:30 club” and a lucky few (thousand) of us simply knew as Josh.
I’ve mentioned before that when it comes to bridges piercings, Eric Stango is my hero, but he’s topped himself today by this awesome orbital. We’ve seen nasallang orbitals before, but Eric’s upped the ante with a full-nose orbital that passes through a pair of nostrils and a septum (ie. nasallang) as well as through his massive bridge piercing. I’m quite certain that this is a first, so for now I dub this THE STANGO. There’s not much to see, but if you’re curious click here for an up-nose shot (he warns, “sorry about the copius amounts of nose hair… I’m Italian!”).
I posted Eric Stango’s bridge piercing a little while back when he was at a measly 00ga (you may also remember him from a couple neat piercing projects — a set of “whiskers” and an anthropomorphic ear piercing). Since then he’s pushed it up to accept an impressive 12mm tunnel, just a sliver away from being an epic 1/2″ Erl. Here he is showing it off with some assistance of one of his four young apprentices (find Eric at Lifestyles and Krazy Eric’s in Connecticut).
You may remember the name Eric Stango (of Lifestyles in Worcester) from a couple odd piercings from his portfolio that I’ve shared with you — the cat whiskers and the “climbing man” ear project — but today I actually wanted to show you the piercing that he wears in the middle of his face. Depending on the anatomy of their skull, many people are lucky to be able to wear a 14ga barbell, and the bridge is not generally a piercing that is forgiving to stretching. Eric though, has managed to get his up to 00ga (that’s what you’re seeing in this photo, which you can zoom in to for a closer view) — normally wearing a very hefty barbell in it — with the goal of pushing it to 1/2″.
Fauxhawk? Stitchhawk? Piercedhawk? Anyone have a good name for this? Whatever you end up calling it, it looks damn good on Blackdon21. Then again, pretty much anything looks good on him.
Here’s another one of those extremely, extremely rare ultra-unusual piercings that always make my day when I wake up to seeing them. I can’t imagine how much force it must have taken to push the needle or punch through the big hunk of cartilage that makes up that portion of the nose — it’s a very imposing. The high nasallang piercing was done by Gabriele of Max Art in Italy (who I’m sure you know best from the SkinTunnel procedure), to accompany the existing nasallang and bridge piercings. Unfortunately it is unlikely that any more piercings between the bridge and the high nasallang could be done due to the anatomy, although they could be faked with microdermals.
Raph looks fantastic in this portrait by Stella Morais. It’s an incredible shot that really showcases Raphael’s collection of modification, including the newly added cheek piercings.
Look at those eyes. Seriously, how incredible are those? You know she wants to say something, but that ribbon is stopping her, so she only has her eyes to tell the story. Symmetry fans are going to love this, up until they see the nostril piercing, then all bets are off.
Ladies and gentlemen, may I present, DefenzeMechanizm.
And here’s a close-up of all those piercings she has.
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This is for all those symmetry fans out there. Well, provided you can overlook the nostril piercing only being on one side.
This pair of 1 month old 14g (large-based) Anatometal dermal anchors was put in by Joeltron.
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