Call them what you will, what I will go with is “Orphans”.

I have a handful of posts that have lingered “on deck,” so to speak, that are, by themselves, sad little bits that were never completed, or, for whatever reason, didn’t pass muster with Tattoosday’s editorial board.

However, by packaging them together, I can cross them off my list once and for all, and move on. A Spring Cleaning, if you will.

So let’s get down to business:

Last March 25, I posted this New York’ish piece on Jonathan. A few days later, Jonathan got another tattoo and sent me a preliminary photo:

I asked him if he could send me a better photo of this pretty awesome owl tattoo. I asked again at the end of April, and again at the end of May.  I followed up again in October, at which point Jonathan said he would send me a new photo soon.

Look, things happen, and I hardly see Tattoosday as the center of the universe. There comes a time, however,  when I’m going to have to assume that it’s fallen by the wayside, and move on. This means, of course, that Jonathan will email me a crisper photo tomorrow.


At the end of last April, I ran into a guy named Nick on the West 4th Street subway platform. I snapped this photos:

The reason I balked at posting this originally was because the piece is a cover-up of a cross, and the original tattoo is fairly visible in its new incarnation.

I was concerned that a stand-alone post would incur the wrath of the tattoo purists and the story that this was a memorial piece for Nick’s grandfather would be lost.

Thus, it ended up in Tattoosday’s home for Orphan Tattoos.

Thanks to Nick, nonetheless, for sharing it with us.


Also last April, I met a guy named Johnny in Penn Station. I noticed as I was passing by  that he had script peeking out from under his shirt at the top of his chest and I handed him a flier and a card. In May, he sent me the following two photos and the accompanying description:
Hey Bill,
We met in Penn Station a couple of weeks ago. I finally got some pictures of a couple of my tattoos. Both of these were done by Krista at Empire Ink in Akron, OH. 
The pin-up girl was drawn by my grandmother when she was 16 for my grandfather while they were dating. The other was an original design.

The Latin quote at the top of the heart is a quote from Julius Caesar. It translates to "From the bottom of my heart". Thanks for the interest in the tattoos and letting me share. 
Honestly, I don’t know why I didn’t post these originally. As time passed and the e-mail traveled to the bottom of my inbox, it became an out-of-sight, out-of-mind submission. Thanks to Johnny for sending these in originally, and for waiting so patiently to see them appear on the site.


At the end of June 2011, I met a woman named Christina in Penn Station, whose ink did make the site a couple months later, here. At the time, she was accompanied by two other people, one whose name was Damion. I took a picture of Damion’s tattoo, but it never made the site, until now. Part of the reason Damion’s work never went live was due to the fact that it is an unfinished work, an orphan in more ways than one. Here’s the shot.

Damion loves these wings, calling them his “prize possession”.  Why are they unfinished? He credited the artist Carlos Alfonso at Rising Dragon Tattoo, formerly located under the Hotel Chelsea on 23rd Street. But, Damion informed me, Carlos passed away. It’s not so easy to have another artist finish the work of a deceased tattooist. Damion’s not the only one who was so affected, as you might imagine. The story rang a bell with me, as I had also featured Carlos’ work in a 2009 post with the ink of performance poet Jackie Sheeler here.

A belated thanks to Damion for baring his back and showing off his wings in Penn Station!


As summer waned, I had a couple of unsuccessful encounters in September, in which the quality of the photos I took were substandard, and e-mails to the contributors went unanswered.

For example, Chris shared this cool octopus on his leg: 

Can you tell it’s an octopus? There’s the issue. Chris’s leg hair and the glare of the sun renders this poor octopus almost invisible. It was inked by a Thai artist namedTong, working out of Tatudharma in Sydney, Australia. Chris was travelling and he “likes octopi,” recognizing that, “as far as invertebrates go, [they are] probably the most intelligent of them.”

In a weird twist of this orphan post, the Tatudharma web site indicates that the shop is closed permanently, a result of it having been firebombed last April. The artists can still be contacted through the website, however.
A couple weeks later, my camera was programmed on the wrong setting, so I ended up with these two washed-out shots of interesting tattoos:

The host of these pieces is Lindsey, a Southern Californian who had both tattoos inked in San Diego.

The plant was done about 8 or 9 years ago by an artist named Alethio.

“I had my boyfriend draw it,” she explained, “I told him I wanted a dictionary-style type of flower, so he kinda came up with a design, so it’s not an actual plant, it’s fictitious … I wanted something organic to be represented on me.”

The bird on her other arm was done by Gary at Ace Tattoo. “That was the beginning of a sleeve that never happened,” Lindsey said with a sigh.

Thanks to Chris and Lindsey for sharing their tattoos and for hopefully forgiving  my camera for betraying them.


And last, but not least is this piece from December:

Jen acknowledged that it wasn’t done very well, but she said she had a good reason for getting it. I did send an email as a follow-up, but more than one reeks of desperation. Maybe one of these days Jen will find my card or flier and finally e-mail me back to explain what wanderlust means to her. Until then, we’re left with this orphan.

Believe it or not, we still have a few 2011 photos left in the tank, but this entry takes out a good chunk of our backlog. Thanks for giving these orphans a home, even if its just for a minute or two.

This entry is ©2012 Tattoosday.

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