Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Sunday Dreams

One of the good things that has come out of the heart wrenching news we received three weeks ago is that I now feel like I have been born again. In the sense that it is time to wake up and smell the coffee. Make some changes in my life. I think I was just kind of stagnating. Letting life run over me and doing nothing to keep myself healthy, fit and in control.

Part of the change is in the form of getting myself back into a healthy life. I've had several check ups already that are long overdue and several more scheduled for when I get back. Of course, they are the awful ones that I am really dreading. Like a colonscopy.

I've also been thinking of changing over things in my life. Physical things. I'll soon be without glasses. Something I have not been for 30 some years. Ever since I gave up wearing contacts. And I've been thinking about my life in Mexico a lot. Why I live it. Why I like it here.

Three of the things I like about here I could like anywhere but I did not discover them until I moved here. They are Diego Rivera, his wife, Frido Kahlo and Posada's iconic Day of the Death creation, La Catrina. Here they are pictured together.

They are featured in a very famous painting by Rivera entitled "Sunday Dreams in Alameda Park".

So one Sunday, while sitting in Brisa Grill, I found my eye drawn back to this door over and over.

And I had all this leg space, so why not?

I printed out some pictures from the Internet and went to see Ramon Velazquez, the owner and head artist. Could he do something so detailed? His response was an enthusiastic "SI!".

So I made an appointment and two weeks ago had my first sitting. He only did the outlines at first. That alone took two hours.

Last Saturday I had my second and final appointment to get the coloring done. At first I thought I wanted to change it up and make it really bright, Mexican type colors with lots of red, yellow, orange, blue and purple.

In the end, I decided to stay true to the painting and go with the more subdued colors and shading. Even so, it was 4.5 more hours of grueling pain. But well worth it, I think.

Here's a closer look.

So what do you all think? I would really like to know. Not that I can change it or anything!


Anonymous said...

Wayne, you should have done it on the OTHER leg. Too late now:-)) What were you thinking? ha

Jackieinpdx said...

I love Frida. That is a great tat. I wouldn’t change a thing on it. Of course there will be people who haven’t a clue what it is. Somewhere on Isla is my Frida biography which I stupidly lent to someone thinking one day I would get it back.

Jamqueen said...

Wow! It's beautiful--glad you stayed true to the painting with the more subdued colors--I like it.

Joy said...

I love this! Especially since I have visited the mural myself several times, and it's so incredible.

Calypso said...

I am not one favoring skin illustrations - but your very complex work of art(ists) is quite nice if you are in to that sort of thing. Congratulations -

I did get my ear pierced when I turned 40 - and I still occupy that hole more often than not - seem to have lessened the earrings because of my moto helmet crunching the stems into my noggin ;-(

Was this painful? Is there a machine involved to transfer the design or was this just drawn? How much? And the real question - are you happy with it?

Islagringo said...

carl/debbie: I already have a small tat there.

jackieinpdx: I actally showed this to a Mexican friend here and he had no idea of whom the people were!

jamqueen: I'm glad I stayed true also.

joy: none of my research revealed where the mural is located. Tell me, tell me! I think DF?

Calypso: you need to get rid of post earrings. Get a ring that is held on by pressure being put on a ball. Look around. You'll see almost every guy with pierced ears wearing one.

It was extremely painful at times. A few brief moments of not so. Like somebody making tiny cuts in you with a razor blade, although they use sterile needles. And it stings for days afterwards. The original picture is traced onto transfer paper and applied to the skin. He followed the outline of that and then used the photos as color/shading guides. I am ecstatic with the job he did and pleased with my choice of subject matter. It was not a quick decision but one I gave considerable thought to. With any tattoo, choose your artist well. Good job or shitty job, you have to live with it.

As for price, he charged 80USD per hour and I gave him a large tip. So a little over $500.

Life's a Beach! said...

Love it Wayne! You're much braver than I am. I say nay to anything painful! (That's probably why my son's an only! HA!)

And I also need to get that colonoscopy done.

CancunCanuck said...

Wow, absolutely gorgeous tat! I am jealous for sure. Now I know where to go when I save up enough for a new one, he did amazing work. Great choice of subject matter. Glad the bad news brought about some introspection, from all bad comes some good. Hope life is looking up for you (and good luck with that colonoscopy, breathe deep!)

Chavo said...

Very nice ink. Love your choice of colors and the tattoo artist has incorporated a lot of detail without it being too cluttered.

Great price, too. Discount tattoo is like discount sushi, you get what you pay for and the repercussions can be horrible

Nancy said...

Congratulations, Wayne, you joined the club!

I'm sure you will get lots of compliments...it looks like an excellent job, too. It's nice to know where the talented artists are, Paul keeps talking about getting his other calf done so he will be balanced!

Nancy said...

Ooops, I forgot to ask, in your new healthy attitude...will you be quitting smoking?

I highly recommend Champix. It worked for me and for a number of my friends.

Anonymous said...

Wow. Looks really nice. Ramon does great work.
I remember your showing me several ideas for this design...and you finalized on a great one!
(And you made an appointment...which means you were not drunk!! ha,ha)


Anonymous said...

Well, Wayne, the artwork is superb ... quite true to the original.

Gotta say, though, conceptually, I can't stand tattoos ...

As to Chantix, it was the only thing that actually got me off cigs. It does not, however, come without a price. You may, indeed, be one of the lucky ones without psychological aftereffects. Many of us weren't so lucky. Don't get me wrong, given a choice I'd do it again ....Free At Last!!!!

Email me sometime and I'll regale you with my story.


O Robert

Billie said...

Wayne, this looks great on YOUR leg.

jeanie said...

Fabulous Wayne! Really, really great. I am so impressed with the whole idea, why you did it and the subject you chose. Bravo my friend!

Anonymous said...

I have always believed that a story should go with a tattoo. My story, that I have held in reserve is: I was in Hong Kong on a educational visit. I went out one nite with my friends bar hopping. we met these girls and the next thing, it was morning, I was in a cot in a crummy hotel. my wallet was gone and I had this ugly tatoo.

el oso

Anonymous said...

wayne, we need blogs about your
#1 future colonoscapy
#2 quitting smoking
both would be a riot to read with you as the author. haha carl/debbie

Anonymous said...

The mural is located here:

Museo Mural Diego Rivera
Corner of Colon and Plaza Solidaridad
Mexico City, Mexico

It is just off Av. Juarez near Alameda Park and the Palacio de Bellas Artes

KfromMichigan said...

Gorgeous .. I love it. You are a brave one .. I am so chicken. All I want is toe rings, but can't do it.

AHealey said...

Wow Wayne, it is beautiful. Even more so because it is something you are passionate about. My friend got a tattoo from Ramon while we were on the island a couple of weeks ago (also something very personally meaningful to her) and Ramon's work is absolutely outstanding. He is a true artist and she would recommend his work to anyone.

Paul said...

Great looking tattoo Wayne, you chose a good subject and found a skilled artist. There are so many bad tattoos out there, I'm glad you didn't get one.

You still have lots of blank skin, it can get addictive.

Also, I had a colonoscopy and it wasn't that bad.


D and B W said...

Nice very nice.
Colonoscopy not a problem, have them put you to sleep and you know nothing except that you've had a nice nap.
I've been a lurker here for a long time and enjoy reading your blog.

My Way said...

I think it looks great Wayne. He did a fab job and I'm sure this tattoo means a lot to you (as in, there is meaning behind it), which is why it made sense to get it.

lisa said...

Nice art work, not something I would ever do, but to each his own! Glad you went through the pain and not me!!

Islagringo said...

LAB: no pain, no gain!

CC: thanks.

chavo: thanks. you must be an afficionado. Not many people use the term ink.

Nancy: thanks, but look what you started! I have no intention of giving up that filthy, expensive habit just yet.

Dougie: we can get you one in October! Maybe smaller though.

O Robert: thanks. tattoos are just another art form. As for Champix, I have used it in the past and it made me so nauseous I could not take it any longer. Couldn't sleep either.

Billie: hahahahaha!

jeannie: thanks.

el oso: I've had the same dream! Except mine was totally different.

Anon: I will be sure to go visit when and if I ever get to DF. Thanks for telling me.

KfromMichigan: toe rings??? Like nose rings?

AHealy: I had seen a lot of Ramon's work before I had him do mine. I agree. Fabulous artist but he is very slow. He is a perfectionist.

Paul: no more for me. (I hope!) This is #3 and that is enough.

DandBW: thanks for commenting! Good idea. I think I will see if they will just knock me out.

MyWay: you are so right. It does have personal meaning to me beyond just the subject matter.

Lisa: thanks. Appreciate the compliment. Hope to have time next week to hear all about your vacation!

Jonna said...

It's gorgeous Wayne! Can't wait to see it in person. I too think the tats with meaning and done with skill are how it should be. Many of us have a few that have the story but not the skill and some of us are lucky to have both. Good choice on the artist.

Jackie said...

Wayne, There is a show on I think the Travel Channel called "LA Ink". Pretty interesting and unusual “ink”.
When my daughter and I were in PV the first time I took her to Mexico back in the late 90’s she said she wanted to get another tat and would get one if I did. We scoped out a couple of places and found one that was very hygienic and looked good to us. Tara showed the tat artist her tat on her stomach and he asked her if “Lion” did the work. Apparently Lion who has a studio in Portland is very well known in the tat artist circles. Then a few years ago my Spanish instructor who used to be a tat artist in DF told me that it really is a small world and all of the good artist go to conventions and share their success stories.
Who knew that there is a tat artist community out there. I am sure that Ramon is in touch with that community too.


Wow..... I think it is really memorable ...

Kim said...

I have also had devastating news lately about two friends. It really makes you reflect on your own life. I love the way you are expressing yourself artistically and that you have also decided to implement new health routines. Don't worry about the colonscopy -- the prep is the worst part. Thanks for the snapshot of your days.

Shana said...

cool tattoo. i love ink based on paintings.. i have this, minus the waves: http://www.abcgallery.com/M/magritte/magritte57.html

Louise said...

I like the tat! And hey, don't worry about the colonoscopy ... it's a piece of cake. I've had one and don't remember a thing from the actual procedure. The worst part is the preparation the day before. I can't imagine why any doctor would want to do that for a living LOL, but thank goodness someone does.

Theresa in Mèrida said...

I love tattoos, I am fascinated by the back stories too. Not the "we were in Vietnam and everyone in my platoon got one" or the ones people picked out of a book but the ones with meaning like yours. Very nice, congratulations on taking control of your life.

IslaZina said...

That is absolutely stunning. Might make me rethink my...nah. But it looks great on you! Congrats!

Islaholic Trixie said...

Very Very Awesome Wayne!! Love it!!

Arizona Kelly said...

Aw crap Wayne.... now I'm going to have to get one so we match on BOTH calfs ;)

I LOVE it! Very nice work.

lagovistajenn said...

Oh Wayne!! That is beautiful! Gave me chills and brought tears to my eyes. He is a true artist. I love tatoos that have meaning. It's always great to do a little soul searching. See you in 4 days!