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Back piece with power, flow, and reflection of culture

This won't be the first time I've created a tattoo design, but I wanted to take the course to see what new perspectives it could give me since I'm not a tattoo artist (though I would like to learn to be).

My project is going to be personal, and will go on my back.

Starting in High School people would ask me to design tattoos for them and I've always wanted one for myself, but I've never done it. I designed one during my Senior year in HS and told myself it would be my graduation gift to myself when I left UNT. Well, 3+ years after graduating from University my back is still blank!! Time to get to it, and what better way than in a course setting?

I realize I'm starting this latter than most everyone else, but I didn't have the time before. My wedding, the holidays, work...it adds up.

The piece will have many layers, will  travel up my spine and widen at the ribs/mid back and narrow again. It will include references to major life influences, subjects of study dear to my heart, such as my spiritual exploration and cultural ties.

Stylisticly I'm going to try to keep the overall feel light. I'll focus on shading and color washes rather than heavy lines.....Or so the plan is for now. Hope to post sketches soon.

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