Thursday, 28 February 2013

Arthur Rackham On My Arm.

I adore tattoos. Anything that can turn you into a walking piece of artwork gets an A+ in my book.

At the moment I have one tattoo on my right wrist  (a swirly-twirly pattern of sorts) which I had done when I turned 18. I like that its in an obvious place where it can be seen constantly, not hidden away to be pulled out occasionally and shown to friends. I don't like tattoos that can't be seen, I don't really get the point of them. Yes, I understand that some people can't have tattoos on show due to work, and it makes me feel extremely luck that I don't have to worry about such things in my job.

I've known now for a good few years that I want my next tattoo to be on my other wrist, but I only got around to planning it just last week. I had a general idea that I wanted it to be based around fairytale and folklore so I dove into some research and image-hunting with that in mind. After a few hours of manic image saving, I resurfaced from the sea of google with a folder rammed full of Arthur Rackham illustrations and not a whole lot else.

" Arthur Rackham style tattoo it is then!" I thought triumphantly.
"And lets make it a full forearm half sleeve while we're at it!" - I was obviously mad-drunk on fairy tale imagery.

My favourite Arthur Rackham illustration.
This mermaid riding a fish will be featuring in my half-sleeve.
So, after a mad battle with my printer, off I went to visit my tattoo-man armed with a precarious pile of picture print-outs. I'm not the best at explaining ideas and whats in my head, but he just totally got it. Straight away. We talked for ages about trees and nature, what fairy tales I wanted featured in it and how the pieces would work together and combine. He's drawing up a sketch for me, which should be ready to look at sometime next week. Let just say 'excited' doesn't even come close to how I feel about it all.

Its going to feature a whole mash of fairytale goodness and delight, but some of the things which will definitely be in it are - lots of trees and branches (of course), a dragon, a mermaid (see above), little red riding hood and the wolf, playing cards, mushrooms and a teapot. All in the style of the wonderful Arthur Rackham. I'm so anxious to see what else he comes up with and how it all looks together! I can barely contain my excitement! I have no idea how I'm supposed to wait a week!

In the meantime I plan to placate myself with some research into the folklore and traditions surrounding tattoos. I want to find out about the meanings and superstitions behind them, who got them and why. I'll post my findings here - I just know its going to be delightfully interesting!

I'll keep updating as things about my own tattoo adventure as it progresses, and hopefully it wont be too long before I have some lovely new art on my arm.

Happy Adventuring xx


  1. That's going to be a really nice tattoo. I don't have any tattoos nor do I think I will ever get one...just not my thing, but I really like seeing nice ones on other people. If they are tasteful and the artistry is good they can be gorgeous. I hope you'll take a photo when it's done.

  2. Thank you :) and I most definitely will be taking some photos of it. I'm excited and impatient to get started on it!