Edwin Lawes first came to get tattooed August 27 2012, when I worked at Saved Tattoo in Brooklyn NY. Six years later as we draw closer to finishing his body suit which will conclude in the next few years with tattooing his sleeves, I have the opportunity to reflect on what an amazing project this has been.
Tattooing is an amazing experience, both as the artist and as the client, which I have had the honor of being both for 20 something years. Working on this project has been a challenging and rewarding experience with a massive learning curve both in how to conceptualize such a large body of work but also to make progress without causing too much physical pain each visit. Edwin and his wife Jennifer (an incredibly talented tattooist) travel to see me once or twice a year from Port Perry Canada, we usually do 3-4 days in a row. This is an extremely difficult way to get tattooed, very painful and a drain on the body’s immune system. This last trip we did 5 days in a row, two long sessions and 3 short sessions. Below you can see some photographs from the results of this last trip, a lot of healed areas and the final sections of his torso and legs mapped out before we move onto his sleeves. The final task with his torso and legs will be to add shading to separate all the layered elements, this will give the shapes space and depth and make the overall look of the imagery much less confusing and chaotic.
Ted is an amazing woodworker and made my family a beautiful chess set as a thank you.
Thank you so much Edwin and Jennifer for all the trust and commitment.
You can see some more of Edwin’s beautiful carpentry here –
And some of Jennifer’s amazing tattooing here –