The tattoo-taboo debate

In this day and age I can’t really tell if tattoos are still considered taboo? Your grandparents frown at them but almost everybody you know has one.

I’ve grown up knowing that I will never be able to get a job with tattoos yet 5 days after I turned 18 I rushed to the tattoo shop and let them ink me for life.

At 19 I have no idea what my future holds yet I have 3 tattoos and am planning to get many more- hopefully 4 by summer!!!

Tattoos on your hands considered job breakers but ones on your torso are perfectly okay?

Men can have sleeves filled with tribal ink, yet women who get anything more than flowers and butterflies get judged.

My question is: why do silly little doodles on your skin impact your future career?

Just a few months ago I found myself hiding one of my tattoos from my grandparents- a tattoo which I love SO much, a tattoo which holds so much familial meaning I would never dream of hiding it. Yet there I was, sat positioning my ankle in ways that were so uncomfortable but hid the thing I loved very much. Why you ask?? Because I knew they wouldn’t like it.

But why should that matter….I love it!!!

I (like everyone should) spend weeks and months thinking of tattoo ideas just to make sure I love them, therefore I feel I should be able to show them off without disapproving looks.  If I want to get a stick man on my foot then I will, and quite frankly it is nobody’s business.

So are tattoos taboo?? Only if you let them be. Express yourself in whichever way you want, and let others do it in whatever way they wish as well!! You do you, and I’ll do me!!

 

 

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Hello 2017!!

I guess this is where I am supposed to say “New year, New me” then list 1001 unrealistic goals that I have set for myself for the year ahead. Goals like “I will never eat chocolate again” (a goal which I have already failed- you just can’t say no to those christmas chocolates), or  “stop drinking for X amount of months” (I mean I have spent the day nursing my hangover, as they say starting the year as you mean to go on.)

However, I do have a few personal goals (more realistic) that I would like to achieve this year. I refuse to label these things as ‘resolutions’ because we all know that once you label something as a resolution all hope of you actually accomplishing these things are gone. But here are my goals for 2017:

  1. Continue to start motivated.

Since starting my degree I have struggled with keeping motivation, all throughout my GCSEs and A Levels I had the end goal of university to keep me motivated but once I got here I realised I had nothing to keep me motivated. Unlike most people I had no career goal, which in turn left me asking myself “why am I here?”

However, after months of questioning my personal career path I have finally decided, and once again have a goal to work towards. I hope this new motivation will help me plow though university, and consequently bring me closer to doing something I love.

2. Frequently upload on this blog. 

Alongside my motivation towards university I am hoping I will have better motivation when it comes to uploading on this blog. I really do enjoy sitting down and writing a blog post, but when I am trapped in university deadlines and revision writing a blog post is the last thing on my mind. I am going to aim for at least one upload every fortnight (every week if you’re lucky). I am really looking forward to having a hobby again, somewhere I can come to just destress.

3. Learn a new language. 

I know this one seems like an unrealistic goal, but it is one I have wanted to do for years. I am sick of putting things off and never actually doing the things I really want. This year I am not going to let my self doubt stop me, and hopefully end the year being able to communicate in another language (even if it is only asking for directions).

4.Be healthier. 

Like everyone I am entering the new year with the goal of eating healthy/ being healthier. However I REALLY want to achieve this, I want to cut out junk food and start looking after myself. Healthier fuel leads to a healthier mind, and I am so excited to explore a healthier lifestyle.

5.Tattoos

I really want to get a few more tattoos (and make better progress on my ‘leg sleeve’), I always said I wanted to have loads of tattoos and instead I am wasting my money on Ben and Jerry’s. So this year I want to save up and get a few tattoos (I mean I am 20 this year and only have 2?? I thought I would be covered by now!!)

So heres to 2017, I am so excited for what this year will bring. Lets hope it’ll be a good one.

Happy New Year!!!

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Sydney x

2000 trees checklist!

As 2000 trees is this weekend and as I always find posts about what people will be taking away with them (especially to festivals) interesting, I thought I would write my own!

The tip with festivals is to cram all your stuff into the lightest bag possible, you don’t need to take your best clothes, you don’t need your dressing gown, you just need to take the essentials. Not only will you have to carry your clothes, but you will need to carry tents, chairs, sleeping bags and alcohol so you don’t want to be carrying your entire wardrobe.

However, as we are in England you need to make sure you plan outfits for both sunshine and torrential rain- just look at everything the downloaders had to deal with this year!

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This I have decided to bring three pairs of shorts (I am being hopeful that the sun will shine) and a pair of ripped skinny jeans (to be safe). I am also bringing 4 tops, that I can wear with both shorts and jeans – as I said minimal items is key. For the cold (and potentially rainy parts) of the weekend, I am bringing a poncho and jumper. Both of these are just precautions (I hope), but its better to be safe than sorry. Normally for a festival wellies are a essential, but I personally hate them! Even for big festivals I don’t take wellies and I almost always regret it, but trees is small so I think the risk will be okay.

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My gnarwolves jumper is my favourite thing for the evenings and early mornings at festivals, as it is cosy and when you are cold or full of a hangover I find that a cosy jumper is perfect!

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The essentials! 

The key about packing for a festival is bringing all the things that are essential for everyday- like a toothbrush and inhaler, and bringing the things which could make your life so much easier when its needed- like moisturiser.

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The not so essential essential!

Although, you can live without electrical items they do make your life easier and help you document your time. Particularly your phone, a phone can help you find your friends and help you document your time. However, as we all know an iPhone battery has the lifespan of around 5 hours which isn’t useful for a 5 day festival. The solution…a portable charger!! I have found the best one to get is a charger that can do up to 7 charges as it can last both one day and weekend festivals!

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Obviously, on top of all of these things I will bringing camping essentials and (my favourite thing I am taking with me) alcohol!

I am so excited for this festival, I am 100% I will be talking about it until reading festival comes around!!

Thanks for reading, and you’ll probably hear from me again with many 2000 trees reviews!

*All images are my own*

Portable charger: https://www.amazon.co.uk/PowerGen-12000mAh-External-lightning-adapters/dp/B0085OB0IE

 

Ghost face!!

For years I have wanted tattoos, I watched my parents get tattoos throughout my childhood, I loved bands with members that were covered in tattoos. I love the idea of covering yourself in beautiful, meaningful art work. Its such a creative way to express yourself, to visually show your identity, to visualise the journey you have made within your life. For me tattoos have always been something that I have always seen in my future, but I am SO glad I waited till I was old enough to get them, rather than go to a place that will give me something badly done and cheap whilst underage.

When I was a child I wanted traditional roses and birds (basically anything you could find in a shop window). When I was 14 I wanted an entire sleeve of bands logos, I basically wanted to copy every single one of Hayley William’s and Jared Leto’s tattoos and add a few. (Thank god I didn’t illegally get them!!) When I was 16 I decided I wanted handwritten lyrics by my favourite band. When I was 17 I wanted only black and white tattoos (mainly realism) and when I turned 18 I still wanted this.

My First Tattoo!!

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Building up to my first I was filled with both excitement and anxiousness, despite people telling me that the best first place to get a tattoo is on your thigh (or just somewhere with some ‘meat’) I decided I wanted my first to be my ribs- aka one of the most painful places on your body. I know I’m bonkers!! In all honesty  I didn’t find it painful, I only felt discomfort once which lasted about a total of 20 seconds. The tattoo shop has a sign saying “If you are worried about the pain, then we are worried about how much you want the tattoo” this really reassured me that whatever pain would be worth it.

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Although, my taste in tattoos changed dramatically over the years, when I was sixteen I decided I wanted lyrics by my favourite band. So I got the singer to write them out for me and I kept hold of it until I was able to get it on my body for life. Waiting 3 years with a tattoo in mind meant I was really able to make sure I wouldn’t regret it. I had people telling me that “I would regret it when I stopped liking the band” “I will move on” but I got the tattoo to symbolise a time in my life. Thats what I think tattoos should be for. A way of symbolising a moment in your life, my tattooist at the time even told me that he believes a sleeve should be made following your journey through life not done in a few sittings over a number of weeks like people are doing nowadays- and I really agree.

I am so happy with my tattoo, and it makes me so happy whenever I see it. But people sometimes don’t believe I actually have it since I never get it out. To me its a personal tattoo, a tattoo that I rarely get out, a tattoo purely for me. Thats what tattoos should be, something to make you happy not to please everyone around you.

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Ghost Face!

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Just over two weeks ago I got my second tattoo. Compared to me 3 years of planning, this was very spontaneous. In a matter of weeks I decided what I wanted and booked it for the earliest appointment available, and literally counted down the days.

I knew over summer I wanted to get another tattoo, so I started looking through the portfolio of every tattoo shop in town (Newquay), decided who I liked the work of and who I didn’t. I feel this step is so important before booking a tattoo, before even getting the design drawn up, if the tattooist doesn’t specialise in the style of tattoo you want then it is unlikely they will give you the tattoo exactly the way you want. When you see their sketch you should be amazed, thats how I felt when I saw my design for the first time. I couldn’t stop starring at it, every single day leading up to my tattoo I would look at the design- which I saw as a good sign. I loved (and still love) every single detail.

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When booking a tattoo its important you explain every detail to the artist- they aren’t mind readers so won’t know how you want it. Likewise, remember they are the professionals sometimes an artist may want to change your idea slightly, they know what is best and what will achieve the best outcome. For me I sent in two images, one showing the style of mask I wanted and one showing the style of heart I wanted and told my artist to come up with anything along those lines. He asked me for my placement (area of body, including which leg as well as part of leg) and sizing, which helped him design my tattoo.

Despite already having a tattoo I was still overcome with anxiousness. Unlike my first, which was just line work, this tattoo was full of shading. Although its common knowledge that line work is always more painful, I had it in my head that for some reason I would be different to the rest of the world and find shading the worst part. I can now conclude I am in fact normal and find line work more painful!! I guess I just have a higher pain threshold than I thought (I am not complaining one bit!)

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For me getting a tattoo is made great by the experience you have in the shop. If you don’t feel comfortable in the shop it is likely you are going to hate every minute and even find the tattoo more painful as the pain is the only thing you can think about. I was lucky both times that my artists made me feel as comfortable as possible-but my most recent tattoo was definitely the most enjoyable experience. Obviously, the artist asked me about my previous tattoos so I had to explain the meaning behind it, which lead onto the conversation of music naturally, I found out that he had indeed seen The Blackout live which obviously made my experience in the shop considerably more enjoyable. Throughout the whole session I felt extremely relaxed, keeping up conversation which helped keep my distracted, whilst also listening to bring me the horizon (the artists choice, which of course again made me extremely happy.) The only times throughout the whole session when I felt uncomfortable was when my foot when numb, but my artist was able to spot this and asked me if I needed to stop which again made me enjoy my experience more and I was very appreciative- due to my foot going numb so many times I was unable to walk for 10 minutes after the session, so I am very grateful that I was able to stop throughout the session or I probably wouldn’t have been able to walk for an hour!!

Meaning. 

For me I don’t think having a meaning behind your tattoo is necessary (despite both of mine having meaning) as long as you find the artwork beautiful and think you will find it beautiful for the rest of your life then I think its fine. For me this ghost face tattoo symbolised my family, both me and my sisters were named after the horror film. Thats why I have placed the horror icon within a love heart ( I do love the film but for me its more about family). I wanted to have a tattoo celebrating my family and the fact that I wasn’t actually named after Australia.

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Thanks for reading! This will probably become a series of posts as I do plan on getting many more tattoos.

“You know you’re not alone” Artist: Dudley, DNA, Newquay.

“Ghost face” Artist: Elmo, The Drunken Sailor, Newquay.

Images: By myself

Things I’ve learnt whilst growing up!!

Thought I would mix things up a little with this post, since I have been reflecting on the past recently- I know doing this is torture but it just has to be done. I know I am only 18 but I feel I have changed dramatically since I was 14 years old and during this change I have learnt a few things. Some of these things I was always told throughout growing up and refused to believe, but some of these things I wish I was told so I could make the change in my lifestyle sooner. I know I am only just (technically) an adult and I will gain so much life experience over the years to come, but now I’ve just started university thus moved out and gained so many new friendships. This change in my life has allowed me to reflect on my younger self, things I regret and things I have learnt from so I thought I would share a few.

Cut people out!!

I know this sounds horrible, but I am not referring to everyone, just the people that don’t deserve your time. I have learnt the harsh way that if a friendship appears to be one sided, then say goodbye. If you are putting more into the friendship than you are receiving then its not worth your time, obviously people go through things in life which means they can’t always put as much time into the friendship but if its an ongoing thing, whats the point?

This doesn’t just refer to the amount of time people put in, friends are supposed to support you, bring you joy and come on a journey with you. If you feel a friendship isn’t providing them things then why stay in it? If your friends are making you more unhappy then they are happy then are they really friends?

I have recently reflected on past friendships and realised they weren’t friendships at all. I have realised some friendships aren’t worth my time, some just caused more drama then they are worth. I think its down to the person to evaluate whether the friendship is worth their time, some friendships are built on different grounds. But I do think its worth thinking about because I cannot imagine my life and how unhappy I would be if i didn’t cut certain people out. Likewise, if a friendship is ending because you have both drifted, let it end. Don’t force a friendship, it’ll most likely make things worse and could end in a argument which isn’t needed.

Have aspirations!!

I’m not talking about new years resolutions, because nobody sticks to them. I’m talking about setting yourself goals, the typical ones for people in their teens are passing exams and getting into uni. However, they don’t have to be massive they can be as small as reading a book. The feeling of reaching these goals is one of the most satisfying feelings I have ever experienced.

However, if you do decide that you want to set yourself big goals then go for it! Opening UCAS and seeing I actually go into the university of my choice was surreal. I think setting yourself big life goals is an amazing thing to do as it gives you something to work for. I come from a town where people tend to get stuck in the same routines working the summer seasons and going out drinking. I knew I didn’t want that, my home town is great but I wanted to see the world, I wanted to live in a city, so I made it my goal to go to university.

Having aspirations has helped me achieve so many things, and most importantly happiness.

Don’t be afraid to be yourself! 

As you can probably tell from my previous posts, I’m into a more alternative music scene (I am not going to deny that I will happily rock out to a bit of Kanye though). I grew up listening to Rancid and when I entered secondary school all I wanted to do was fit in so I stopped myself from listening to what I wanted. I remember listening to the top 40 and my dad hating every minute of it-my house was a constant battle of the charts and Sick of it all, I now feel very sorry for the rest of my family. Then b.o.b released that wonderful album, which introduced Hayley Williams and Rivers Cuomo back into my life. I remember not feeling guilty for listening to them songs and showing Paramore to people as they liked Aeroplanes-I look back on this and just want to shout at myself, I can’t believe I thought denying myself of this music would make people like me. Luckily I never went back, I started listening to what I liked again and my dad was happy. Sure I had to deal with people calling me ’emo’ but I was comfortable in myself again, personally if someone can’t accept a certain side of you then are they worth your time?

Your mother is always right! 

Okay, maybe not always. But most of the time, my mum always pushed me to do things-like revise for exams. Now the idea of going against my mums back to do things seems pointless, for example when I was 16 I nearly went and got a few tattoos (illegally) despite my mum suggesting I don’t-I am so glad I didn’t as I 100% don’t want any of the tattoos I did back then. As I said my mum pushed me to revise when all I wanted to do was go out with my friends, I now realise her pushing me was the of the best things that has happened. I remember not believing in myself and going to apply for an easier university to get into, but my mum told me if I worked hard I could get in which I did. I have realised that if I talk to my mum about phonetics or a band like Blakfish she will have no idea, but when it comes to important life decisions my mum has a pretty good idea!

You will grow out of that phase- you know the one that makes you say “Its not a phase mum!!”

As I’ve been reflecting on my 14 year old self, I have been reminiscing through photos. Which brings me to my final tip of advice. Coloured hair is nice but don’t dye your hair permanently red. It will take forever to come out! Be prepared for bright orange hair. Also, if you manage to finally get the red out of your hair, avoid going every colour in the rainbow in under 2 months. Your hair will most likely fall out! (and you will want to destroy every photo of your teen years)

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(I am cringing so much at these photos-but I felt they had to be shared. I honestly can’t say I’ve fully grown out of my wild hair days, but I like to think my fashion sense has increased slightly)

Thanks for reading, Sydney x