The Story of All of My TATTOOS

in tattoo •  11 months ago




Showing Skin

I have been getting #tattoos for 7 years now. During that time I have acquired around 20 rather large works of art. I have been meaning to write this blog for a few months. I just haven't had the time to focus on it clearly enough until now. I am happy to say it is finally complete. This is my longest blog yet, I just have so much to say about this subject. No I am not a tattoo artist, just a collector.

Today we will talk about many things. Such as:
When I started getting tattoos, which ones hurt the most, if I regret any of them, how much money I have spent, what they all mean to me, who are all of my artists, and of course pictures of all of my tattoos.


When did I get my first tattoo?

I remember vividly when I got my first tattoo. It was my senior year of high school, in January of 2011. I was freshly 18 years old, finally old enough to make my own decisions regarding tattoos. Not that my parents were against it in any way at all (thanks mom and dad), it was more the tattoo shop itself who preferred me to be a legal adult. This is most likely due to the fact that I didn't just want some tiny tattoo, I was going huge right from the start with a half sleeve.

During this time in my life I was big into hip hop, had just came into existence. I was up to date on everything there was to know about hip hop, even designing mixtape cover artwork for some of my favorite artists at the time. I even got to design for one of the most influential people when it came to my early love of tattoos, Kid Ink. Clearly he influenced my love of tattoos as he is completely covered.


I remember just before I walked into my first ever appointment at Black Eagle Tattoo (in Charleston, WV) it was snowing hard outside. I was super nervous, and shivering due to nerves and the cold. I was trying to find a way to get myself pumped up, so I had the song Tat It Up by : Kid Ink playing over and over. The lyrics to that song can be found here. Another song I was big into was Ink My Whole Body by : Wiz Khalifa.

Wiz Khalifa was the first artist I ever saw live in concert, just a few months before my first tattoo, at the Waken Baken Tour in Columbus, Ohio. Both of these artists combined were main my reasons for becoming so obsessed, I mean committed, to tattoos. This is funny, because I don't listen to either of them much at all anymore. The same goes for hip hop in general, I am more into EDM now for sure.


Which tattoos hurt the most?

Of course all of my tattoos hurt tremendously, some were much easier to sit through than others. A lot of the time it depended on my mood for that day, or whether or not I had eaten/drank enough food/water. I can say for certain that my most painful tattoos were my belly and my elbows. My upper ribcage and my inner bicep were also pretty painful, but nowhere near as bad as belly/elbow.
It is different for everybody though, so do not let my complaints of suffering make you afraid to try something yourself. I always say if you have any desire at all, just go for it. Being afraid is not very much fun at all. Neither is thinking what if, years down the road.


Do I regret any of my tattoos?

The simple answer is NO! I love every single one of my tattoos. Never have I gotten something, then wished I hadn't. I don't even always think deeply about what I am doing beforehand either. There have been times I have gotten something the same day that I thought of it. Just go with your natural instincts and do not let the voices in your mind hold you back. Same goes with letting other people sway your decisions, don't listen to them. It is your body, do with it as you please.
I have been wise enough to never go to a bad tattoo artist, so all of mine have turned out amazing. This leads me to my next point, the cost.


How much $$$ have I spent on my tattoos?

This is a tough question to answer, as I have not kept exact track of how much I have spent. The average price I have paid ranges from $50-$100 an hour. I have gotten better deals the longer I have sat in the chair for one session. My longest session was 6 hours . The larger the tattoo, the lower price per hour should be. I have never paid more than $100 per hour. Then again I have never been tattooed by any mainstream artists who can charge whatever they choose, then still keep their schedule full months in advance due to their popularity.

I have well over 100 hours of time in the tattoo throne. So just with an estimate, I can say that I have spent at least $10,000 on tattoos throughout my life. If you want to be a walking piece of art, then you must fork over the cash to become that. You definitely get what you pay for in this industry.


My tattoos

Finally, we are to the meat of this blog. The part you have been waiting for, details about the beautiful ink-work that calls my body home. I will layout each tattoo description in a similar manner so that it is very simple to take all of this information in. The list will be long, so be prepared. I can promise you that you will have a blast learning about what all of my tattoos mean to me. You will see pictures of all of my tattoos, and find out who all of my artists are; with links to all of their Instagrams.


These will be in order from oldest to newest.


Dragon/Lucky Scroll

When did I get it : Started in January of 2011, finished in March of 2011.

Who was the artist : Nick Quinn

What does it mean : This is a Japanese Dragon, which goes with the Japanese theme of my right arm. Japanese dragons have only three toes/claws while the Chinese dragon has five claws, and the common dragon has four. The Japanese believe that if you have a dragon tattoo it will imbue you with its power and magic. There are two types of dragons, sky and cloud. I chose the sky dragon, as seen with the clouds surrounding it. Dragons are the embodiment of true balance, which is what I strive for daily. The scroll is Kanji lettering for the word lucky.

Extra Info : Having lots of color was very important to me on this tattoo. At the time I told myself that this was going to be my only tattoo, I sure was wrong about that.



Zombie Samurai/Geisha/Flowers/Waves

When did I get it : Started December 2011, Finished May 2012.

Who was the artist : Billy Beans

What does it mean : To me, my samurai stands for strength, honor, integrity, courage, benevolence, politeness, sincerity, loyalty, and self-control. NOT war and violence, despite the fact that this guy is standing on top of a skull. This is meant to represent the death of the ego. Also this samurai relates to my belief in service of others, meaning that my life isn't always all about me.

To me, my geisha stands for beauty, mystery, divine feminine, intrigue, elusiveness, my dreams, aspirations, and ambitions. The geisha are masterful artists, this includes music, dance, conversation, writing, games, and visual art. Some people associate geishas with prostitution, but that is like assuming all people who have tattoos are evil.

The flowers stand for growth and continuation. They also add yet even more color to my arm, which we now know I am very fond of. My favorite tree is actually a cherry blossom, the leaves can be seen floating throughout this piece.

Extra Info : I got this as a continuation of my Japanese dragon half sleeve on my right arm. It was a bit difficult to tie the two together, however it turned out amazing. I was a broke college student when I got this, that is why it took so long to complete. I was lucky enough to have fantastic parents that got me this one as a birthday/Christmas gift.


Tiger Shark

When did I get it : August 2012

Who was the artist : Jaime Taiffe

What does it mean : This shark has earned his stripes through valiant efforts. Also he is partially disappearing due to his sly nature. Coughing up blood, not because he is sick, but due to the fact that he just chomped down on his greatest fear.

Extra Info : I actually got this tattoo during shark week with one of my best friends ever. We both got shark tattoos together. Although we live far apart now and don't talk as much, I know we both think of our friendship whenever we look down at our tattoos.



UFO Cow Abduction

When did I get it : September 2012

Who was the artist : Billy Beans

What does it mean : Back before money existed, the most popular form of currency was the auroch. This is the extinct ancestor of domestic cattle. If you had cattle, you had wealth, transportation, and storage of your valuables. The ufo is simply a representation of myself abducting financial freedom.

Extra Info : I had an obsession with ufos during college. Still kind of do, I just have many other things to be consumed by, so it is not as intense as it was back then. I also am a very funny guy. When most people look at my cow, the first thing that usually comes out is a laugh.



Space Ape

When did I get it : September 2012

Who was the artist : Billy Beans

What does it mean : Going any distance to achieve my goals. This ape went as far as going to outer space just to reach out for the thing he values most, bananas.

Extra Info : Another one that gets people to chuckle, I'm totally okay with that. I also happen to love bananas, one of my favorite fruits actually.



Honeycomb Dripping Honey

When did I get it : July 2013

Who was the artist : Tra Walker

What does it mean : Honeycombs are made of tightly packed cells in the shape of hexagons. Hexagons have 6 sides, to me six is sex. Sex equals creation, love, and family. Honeycombs also represents cells in a matrix. Honeycombs are the place where a bee stores their honey. Symbolically, a bee is a spiritual traveller, honey is spiritual input, thus a honeycomb is symbolically a place in the body where spiritual input can be stored.

Extra Info : I really wanted to do something on my left elbow that I had never seen before. We have all witnessed the popular spiderweb elbow tattoo. I like to stand out, to inspire others to accept their own uniqueness.


Space Rock & Scales

When did I get it : August 2013

Who was the artist : Tra Walker

What does it mean : The rock is my way of saying that I am a cosmic creation, composed of space dust particles. Th scales represent my sun sign, which is Libra. The scales also are a representation of balance and justice.

Extra Info : The colors on this one still blow my mind even with it being 6 years old now. I am glad I got this one on my wrist, I am proud to show it off daily.



Deep Sea Diver

When did I get it : November 2013

Who was the artist : Chris George

What does it mean : This esoteric diver goes deep on everything he opens his mind to, much like me. Even if it is an unexplored subject by many, such as the depths of our oceans.

Extra Info : This was actually a design from Pink Dolphin, one of my favorite clothing brands.



Cherokee Indian with Donut Lips

When did I get it : July 2014

Who was the artist : Jeremy Joachim (can't find his social media, so the link will send you to the tattoo shop I went to instead.)

What does it mean : I have a largely Cherokee, Native American ancestral bloodline. The donut lips are a representation of the lies fed to the natives of America by the settlers from Europe. Much like we are fed donuts that are terrible for our health, the natives were given things such as blankets that were covered in foreign diseases; like smallpox. This wiped out large portions of their tribes.

Extra Info : I got this tattoo less than 3 hours after I hydroplaned and wrecked my car on my way to Asheville, NC for the first time. I was by myself, and really angry about the accident at the time. So I decided to get a tattoo to channel the pain elsewhere, after obtaining my rental car. While waiting for the artist to draw my design, I saved a girl's dog who had just gotten out of her house as she was getting out of the shower. This was simple for me, the dog came right to me. She came trailing him down the road in nothing but a towel, it was pretty funny.



Dolphin/Bee Morph

When did I get it : July 2014

Who was the artist : Jared "Moonbear" Duncan

What does it mean : Bees are spiritual beings of the land. Dolphins are spiritual beings of the ocean. Dolphins are my favorite animal, and bees are my most feared creature; although I do have tremendous love for their efforts.

Extra Info : This tattoo shop was across the street from the hotel I was staying in during my first trip to Asheville, NC. I got this the day after my Cherokee tattoo, my arm was still really swollen and sore. Upon walking in randomly to this shop, I got to know Moonbear (his native american name). He also had a Cherokee bloodline, plus his favorite drawing hobby was morphing animals. It really was a synchronistic match made in heaven for me, as I had been wanting this tattoo for quite some time. We did it that same day, it took him a few hours to draw it. Then 6 hours to complete the tattoo, all in one setting. My longest tattoo session still to this day.



Kaleidoscope Geometry

When did I get it : November 2014

Who was the artist : Tra Walker

What does it mean : The word kaleidoscope comes from the Greek language and means "beautiful form to see." What you see through the eyehole will never be exactly the same twice, unpredictable. Much like I aim to be.

Extra Info : A kaleidoscope is made of two or more mirrors or reflective surfaces positioned at an angle to each other, usually forming a V-shape or a triangle. A collection of objects is positioned at one end of the mirrors, and there’s an eyehole at the other end.



Ninja Climbing Ice Mountains

When did I get it : January 2015

Who was the artist : Jaime Taiffe

What does it mean : Ninjas are warriors of the night. They are cunning, courageous, and cutthroat. Lessons are grueling, every move is rehearsed precisely and endlessly. No one speaks, in stark contrast to the samurai who proudly shouts his name as he wades into battle. The ninja works in silence. The masters of invisible warfare, slowly absorbed into time, legend, and the night.

Extra Info : I got this soon after making my first ever visit to the top of Snowshoe Mountain in West Virginia. Whilst there, I absolutely froze to death. It did not matter how many layers of clothing I was wearing, it still felt like all I had on was a thin layer of cloth. Much like a ninja would wear.



Anglerfish Siren

When did I get it : September 2015

Who was the artist : Sehra Wilson

What does it mean : Anglerfish are the fish with a light extending from their head. They use this light to lure fish in the dark depths of the ocean before viciously taking the victims life. This is similar to how a siren functions. A siren is a dangerous, mythological creature, who lures nearby sailors with their enchanting music and singing voices to the boat to shipwreck on the rocky coast of their island.

Extra Info : The day I got this tattoo, I was actually planning on getting my deer tattoo. There was not time to draw the design and get tattooed in the same day, so I opted for this piece instead. I was already in the mood to get tattooed and saw this drawing hanging from Sehra's wall. I instantly fell in love, the colors were even perfect already. Luckily she had not already tattooed it on somebody else, and never will, now that I have it in the center of my chest.


Gangster Deer

When did I get it : October 2015

Who was the artist : Sehra Wilson

What does it mean : This represents a buck who is coming back with a vengeance against the hunter who killed his best friend out in the woods. He is dumping out the 40oz of malt liquor for his dead homie. Blowing smoke because he has no fear anymore. He wears the bandana so that he can cover his face and be unknown whenever he slays the hunter. I chose the tommy gun because it is an old fashioned gangster gun, and my grandfathers name is Tommy. My papaw just so happens to love to hunt, like the majority of my family; unlike me.

Extra Info : A deer, holding a tommy gun, dumping out a 40oz, blowing smoke, while wearing a bandana. A bit of an odd request, but this is why I liked Sehra so much. She never once questioned my reasoning, she just created something spectacular instead.



Ocean Camo

When did I get it : November 2015

Who was the artist : Sehra Wilson

What does it mean : There is so much hidden deep in the ocean that we are yet to be fully aware of.

Extra Info : Another idea I got from Pink Dolphin, this is their original blue ocean camo that relesased back in 2013.



Crystal Pinecone

When did I get it : April 2016

Who was the artist : Brad Norman

What does it mean : Pinecones have been shown throughout history to symbolize human enlightenment, the third eye, and the pineal gland. Nature is full of magic.

Extra Info : This tattoo took much longer than you would have thought due to all of the intricacies. Almost 4 hours actually, although it is not even as big as my palm.


Legendary Birds

When did I get it : Started April 2016, Finished May 2016.

Who was the artist : Sehra Wilson

What does it mean : Articuno, Zapdos, and Moltres were the three original winged mirages from Pokémon. This was one of my favorite childhood memories. It is stated in the anime that Articuno and Moltres combined powers of ice and fire are the source and cradle of the oceans, and that Zapdos' electric energy creates the currents and streams. Without all three working together the world would be in chaos. They support each other to provide balance throughout the realm of existence.

I also like to attribute each one to a certain aspect of our being. The Mind (Zapdos/Electiric), Body (Moltres/Fire), and Spirit (Articuno/Ice).

Lastly, I think it is important that we all strive to leave a legend behind once our physical body ceases to exist. A legend is a story passed down through generations that is so spectacular that you are not sure whether it is truth or fiction.

Extra Info : The most painful tattoo of all time. This was so brutal to endure, however I finished it and couldn't be happier with the results.



Final Words

Thank you so much for taking the time to learn about one of my most prized possessions, the canvas that is my skin. Your skin is the largest organ of the body, approximately 16% of your body weight.
I look forward to getting many more tattoos in the future, perhaps one day covering most of myself.

My goal is to be tattooed by Dillon Forte or Corey Divine at some point, #sacredgeometry is one of my many passions, and they both are masters of the art.

I will finish off this blog by leaving a couple more pictures of my sleeves fully completed so that you can get a better idea of how well all of this ink flows.








Best Regards,














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Wow you have so many tattoos! My favourite ones, if I am allowed, are the honeycomb, kaleidoscope geometry, UFO and the sea diver. With the kaleidoscope geometry one being my favourite! I love those kind of patterns. Patterns resonate with me a lot. If I try to remember anything I always make it in to a pattern, whether its a rhyme, a numerical pattern or sequence etc. It is probably why I am so mesmerised by your digital artwork! I also love those colours!

I actually have a secret tattoo. I suppose it's only secret because nobody knows I have it until I go to the beach.

Its down the side of my body, and it really hurt me!!! The first time I had one there, I seemed to be ok. But then I decided to have it removed which hurt. I probably had only 3 more sessions to go, but then when I was in Thailand I decided to get a bamboo tattoo cover up. It still isn't completely finished, but couldn't deal with the pain much more, so will probably get it finished one day! :)


Yes indeed I have quite a few. Thank you for taking the time to indulge in my inky-ness. Of course you can pick favorites, I however just cannot seem to do that.
Patterns are huge for me also. They are a form of memory, communication, beauty, and so much more. Same goes with color.

Your tattoo is a secret no more, it is forever known on the blockchain now. I only have one on the side of my body, and yes it is pretty terrible pain.. Especially if you do not have much extra meat on your bones like you and I. I remember my teeth vibrating when the tattoo gun was on my ribcage.

I hear removal is worse, but I have no idea myself. Never will either. Ahhh, Thailand, my dream locale. Is this a hand-poked cover up that you are talking about? Or, just a regular tattoo? Either way I am sure it is beautiful, make it a mission to conquer that pain.

awesome tattoos man. I've only got two small ones in each of my under arms ... I haven't mustered enough stamina to last longer than 30 minutes to get tattoos done lol .. guess my skin is too sensitive. I always love seeing other people's works of arts on their body!


Thanks a lot bro! I have definitely grown accustomed to the pain, however it never goes away. It has allowed me to better understand myself. All I can say is keep whole body breathing going, and don’t have an empty stomach. Also drink plenty of water, definitely not alcohol. And if you have to pee, go freaking pee! The pain is so much worse whenever you have a full bladder for some reason.

Great post! I love all of your body art. They make you unique and display your life story so far. A beautiful representation of you❤️


Thank you 👏
I agree. This is why I space, so that I can get more stories later on.

Yowza! I added you to the @ARTzONE voting list amigo!


Pain is if the mind 😉

Thanks! What voting list are you talking about though?


Whoops! I had been working so long I confused my own feed with the @Artzone feed I’m curating for... my bad :) Your still on the list though, if yoy tag artzone on your artistic content, you will receive upvotes 🤙🏽


Ooooh, I see. That could get pretty confusing I'm sure.

Thank you very much for doing that! I will be sure to tag #artzone anytime that I post art. I know not to use it more than once a day though, as to share the wealth of the vote.

awesome ink I love the dragon


Thanks so much. The dragon was the original one to start it off. I love that thing so much still. Somehow looks just as bright as 7 years ago.

Your legendary bird tattoo!! That's cool as hell dude. The honeycomb and kaleidoscope geometry looks dope too. That honey drip is super realistic. Are you from WV? I just got a tattoo from Black Eagle last year and live in the Charleston area.


This comment just made my day.
Thank you so much.
I’m so happy to finally meet another Steemit user from my area. I live in Cross Lanes.
We should totally exchange contact info and get together.

Fill out the form in my website so you don’t have to put your personal info here on Steemit

Dalton , you have so much tattoos aawWw :)
i like that it's colorful , <3 the dragon is cool


Yes I have countless tattoos.
Thank you for the compliment Adele. You are full of wonder much like my dragon.

Thanks for explaining your tattoo journey. Definitely an amazing read bro. Thanks for sharing.


I’m happy that you enjoyed learning about my experiences with getting tattoos. I have been wanting to share this with the community for a long time. I’m glad you were here to view it soon after it was posted.

Tatoo is one of the greatest work of art that is not for the faint-hearted. Difficult to create, painful to endure, but marvelous to behold.


Indeed it is, you are correct. Some may end up like this :

Buen post, noto un pocpo incorrecto el chart de dolor ya que el que tengo en el cuello no me dolio para nada y el de la pantorrilla me dolió banda xD, pero en si muy nteresante de ver todo.


Esa tabla es solo una estimación. El dolor es diferente para todos. Todavía no tengo ninguna en mis piernas o cuello, así que no puedo comentar.

They are great! very colorful


Indeed they are 🌈🎨❤️🧡💛💚💙💜💗

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