Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Paper Dolls, Barbie, and the Pin Up

An oldie but a goodie!.....

Did you know I own a tattoo shop?  I do.  Deluxe Tattoo Parlor.  Truth is I have very little to do with it, my husband, Mav, is the one who runs it.  When I was in high school I wanted to become a tattooer.  The problem is I don't like touching people, or having a job.  So instead I married one.

Our girls do not think of tattoos as anything odd or different.  They spend a fair amount of time at the shop and they always pick out a tattoo.  They choose from the flash, find the tracing, make a stencil and put it on.  Often times they go over it with a tattoo machine-sans needle.  Sometimes one of the guys at the shop "tattoo" them in this way.  Cartoon characters are the top choice followed closely by mermaids.

 A lot of people ask if we are going to let our children get tattooed.  No,  I will not let my children be tattooed,  not as "children." Once they are grown of course they can make their own decisions.  I have the hope they will rebel against us-the establishment, and not get tattooed.

 This has given the girls a unique perspective in imagery.  Lots of dragons, swallows, skulls, pinups, daggers, koi fish etc... and I often wonder how it will play out in their lives.   I have a hint of what it might look like with my niece.  She also had a lot of exposure to tattoo arts beginning at a very young age..  Here she is photographed by my daughter Ruth.  See a correlation?

Are pinups my children's version of Barbie dolls?  I think maybe.  We do try to counter this and create healthy body image.  Raising young girls I can tell you it isn't easy.  I also know if we looked at Mav's art since having his first little girl we would notice a more modest approach to pinups.


  1. "The problem is I don't like touching people" That comment made me laugh. I don't like touching people either!

  2. So lucky to be married to an artist! Your little girls are so pretty :) I was glad my kids were exposed to the tattoo community early on. The people I personally have met are generally more open and artistic and usually less judgmental. I personally love the art of tattoo. I have two of my own so far and there's about a thousand more I want (you know how it is once you get one lol)

  3. I think it's a great atmosphere to bring up children amongst artists and to know that people aren't outcasts or whatever for being different! I hope they rebel too, only in that I think children should ;o)

  4. Is the correlation with your niece the fact that she was raised around tattooing but chose not to have tattoos?

  5. Anonymous-it is that she is striking a classic pin up pose.


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