This belongs to Lisa (who is also So it Goes #56).
I read The Worst Journey in the World - an account of Captain Scott's attempt on the South Pole - and became completely taken with Lt Henry 'Birdy' Bowers. An amazing, awe-inspiring man, I now also have a tribute to him on my foot.
Happy Valentine's Day!
This belongs to Kelsey Lynne.
I knew I wanted this tattoo the second I heard House of Cards by Radiohead. It describes my mentality toward sex, dating and life really.
"I don't want to be your friend, I just want to be your lover"
- House Of Cards by Radiohead
This belongs to Ted.
This is my first tattoo, and obviously it's about Harry Potter.
"All was well" is the last sentence of the story that defined a big part of my childhood and even my adult life until now, so I wanted it as a tribute to Harry, Ron, Hermione and all the other wonderful characters J.K.Rowling created.
I also think that good stories must have a happy end, and until now, my life was a pretty good story so I hope someday it will end with a happy end and a sentence like this.
The tattoo was done by Markus from "Tattoo Theater" in Munich, Germany.
This is Amy's.
To me, it means that no matter how much crap life throws at you, if you have good people around you, and you keep fighting, everything's going to be okay.
This belongs to Julia.
I got this tattoo because I feel that the sentiment that things can always turn out well in the end is a great life motto, because it is an iconic "Happy Ending phrase" that expresses my love for the storytelling tradition, and because I have loved Harry Potter for almost a decade now. I began to draw because of these books, and I will graduate from art school as a graphic designer, illustrator and book artist this summer. Without HP, it is very likely I would not have chosen that path.
Plus, I designed the font (almost) myself. It's as close to Jane Austen's (another author I love... that woman knows character interaction) handwriting I could get. I used the webfont as a base and then tweaked it into perfection in Illustrator, using prints of Austen's letters for reference.
This belongs to Alexandra:
"Stop!" she cried, "don't sing that. I don't want you to sing it," and she laid her glass so impetuously and blindly upon the table as to shatter it against a carafe. The wine spilled over Arobin's legs and some of it trickled down upon Mrs. Highcamp's black gauze gown. Victor had lost all idea of courtesy, or else he thought his hostess was not in earnest, for he laughed and went on:
"Ah! si tu savais
Ce que tes yeux me disent"—
"Oh! you mustn't! you mustn't," exclaimed Edna, and pushing back her chair she got up, and going behind him placed her hand over his mouth. He kissed the soft palm that pressed upon his lips.
- The Awakening by Kate Chopin, originally from a french folk song, as per the book. It means "If only you knew" in French. The words and the language both inspire me, but the choice to tattoo the words came from the deep connection I felt with the character Edna. I understand her despair in love, and I find the words "Ah, si tu savais!" are really the only way to describe it.
This is Jay's tattoo, based on a song by The Smiths.
The song is called Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loved Me. It is the first Smiths song I heard in my life and it has a deep meaning for me. The Smiths are my favorite band and I rely on Morrissey's voice every time I don't know what to do.
Last night I dreamt
That somebody loved me
No hope, no harm
Just another false alarm
- Excerpt from Last Night I Dreamt That Somebody Loved Me by The Smiths
Emily emailed me her awesome tattoo a few weeks ago. She described it as follows:
Several quotes including Emily Dickinson, Alfred (Lord) Tennyson, Jack Kerouac, Carl Sagan, covering topics such as love, science, education, imagination, strength, and passionate people. Tattoo was done by Ivy Gowen at Metamorphosis in Winnipeg, MB (Canada). Fonts used are Travelling Typewriter and Veteran Typewriter with the artist's own ink splatterings added :)
It's not every day someone emails me a whole text sleeve tattoo, so I wrote back for more details! I've included some of the excerpts below, and you can read more about the tattoo on her blog.
The first excerpt across my shoulder is from Ulysses, and talks of the evanescence of the strength of youth, but also of the immortality of the strength of heart and will:
“Though much is taken, much abides; and though
We are not now that strength which in old days
Moved earth and heaven; that which we are, we are;
One equal temper of heroic hearts,
Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will
To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.”
Around the corner, across the top of my arm, is an excerpt from Jack Kerouac’s On the Road:
“The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace thing, but burn, burn, burn like fabulous yellow roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars.”
Beneath, by Emily Dickinson, is one of my favourite quotes about love. Not an everyday kind of love, but a love that burns brighter than any dream imaginable… a love that transcends words, life, time and death:
“That I shall love always, I argue thee that love is life, and life hath immortality.”
After this, I had two terribly sciencey quotes added, along with a brilliant splattering of ink across much of what had already been done.
“Somewhere, something incredible is waiting to be known,” (Carl Sagan), and “ad astra per aspera” (through adversity to the stars… I believe at one point, this was used by NASA).
I have a few strands of text still to go, a couple of stray words and one full-size quote (below), and then, for now, I’ll be finished! The thing I love about this isn’t just the immortality of so many sentiments that mean so much to me, but also that as I grow and evolve, so too can this.
“As I see it, life is an effort to grip before they slip through one’s fingers and slide into oblivion, the startling, the ghastly, or the blindingly exquisite fish of the imagination before they whip away on the endless current and are lost forever in oblivion’s black ocean.”
Love, science, imagination, language, strength and stars now walk with me through life, and I couldn't be happier with how it’s taking shape.
This belongs to Jessica Bischoff.
This belongs to Bia.
This belongs to Jason Meyer in Boise, Idaho.
It strikes me as the simplest explanation of life and everything in it.
This was posted as a part of “So it Goes” Saturdays. The phrase “so it goes” appears in Kurt Vonnegut’s Slaughterhouse-Five 106 times. Can you help me collect 106 “so it goes” tattoos? 62 down, 44 to go.