Every tattoo collaboration and subsequent story is special but there are some that are, for me, unforgettable. Natalie's is one. Last summer, en route to Provincetown, I got her email while on a train to Boston. Between jolts on the train tracks I managed to send her photos of the designs from my phone, and the final file when I reached my destination. That was the summer of calligraphy by land and by sea. Natalie just sent along the photos and I couldn't be more pleased with how it turned out. I'm so moved by her story (and her dad's sweet words of wisdom). Perhaps it's because I'm at that age, but the anxiety-inducing conversation around "having it all" seems to be inescapable these days. It's nice to be inspired by people like Natalie who have chosen, instead, to have enough.
In June of last year I made the decision to close my business of 7 years to be a full-time Mum. It was an absolutely gut-wrenching decision but after juggling both for almost two years and feeling constantly torn, something had to give.
My bricks-and-mortar baby would forever run a distant second to my flesh-and-blood baby, so I chose to let go of the business and take my life in the direction of calm simplicity. A huge change for me, and a time that I felt needed a permanent marker.
The words are my Dad's paraphrased version of the Desiderata. He says them quietly in my ear with every big, reassuring Dad hug that he gives. He is my ever-supportive voice of reason, always sharing his pearls of wisdom.
I was on a wait-list for my tattoo artist and got a call sooner than I'd expected. As I sat down to email the studio, it happened that all the type-tatt images I was about to send as examples had been penned by Neither Snow. Despite my appointment being in three days time, I figured I'd email Mara instead!
From her train seat on her way to Boston she emailed and, working with the 15-hour time difference, was able to get my words ready for inking.
Mara did the most perfect job for this perfectionist. I wear my words proudly, their placement reminding me to 'go easy' twice a day - just after breakfast and just before bed as I brush my teeth!
Thanks to Jed at Holdfast Tattoo in Perth, Western Australia for interpreting the work so well, and to photographer Penny Lane for the stunning photos. And most of all, to Natalie.