Welcome back to another installment in our new series – I’m A Mom With Tattoos. In case you have missed the last couple, don’t forget to check them out here.
What a week. Knox has had a rather rough time, struggling with tonsillitis and bronchitis has resulted in him vomiting every single night! We were running out of clean clothes, bedding and patience. The poor little dude is looking so very thin, but thankfully I am glad to report that the last couple of nights have been much better – no more vomiting! YAY!
It seems to have been a visual week on the blog this week, I think it’s because I have reignited my little hobby of taking photos and now that I have, I realised that I actually rather missed it. Continuing along the theme of entertaining you with the visually appealing I have chosen to share the lovely Leandre’s tattoos with you today. That leopard is just gorgeous! Time for another cuppa.
Your name and blog deets: Leandre Warren from Muse Lee Mom
Your age: 33, gasp…
Your Occupation: I am a family photographer and have my own studio 🙂 I am the face behind Leandre Photography
Tell us about your family: One of my favourite subjects 🙂 I am a single mom to an amazing little boy. Munchkin is now 5, turning 6 in September (while I have a mini heart attack about having a 6 year old and more so being old enough to BE a mom of a 6 year old). He is both wonderful and challenging having a wonderful combination of ADHD, autism and SPD. He is homeschooled so that creates a space for wonderful adventures, lol and sometimes a few frustrations.
If you work, tell us a bit more about your working environment – are you regularly in contact with new “clients/public”. I work with a lot of families, often with younger children as I specialise in child photography. I have a home based studio which is wonderful because it allows me to work from home and spend maximum time with Munchkin.
• Tell us a bit about your tattoo’s, what they are, why you have them, where they are located
I have 6 tattoos, and 5 of them were done in the last 2 years, I think that qualifies as an addiction doesn’t it?
My first tattoo is on my left shoulder blade and is of a little tribal moon with a few stars, I always wanted a tattoo and this was so me at the time, slightly hippy and energy loving. I drew it myself but the tattoo artist tattooed a little too deeply and so it’s still raised and a little faded after 11 years of having it.
The rest followed in short succession of each other.
I have a dandelion and a phrase on my right front and back shoulder, the phrase says “every breath is a second chance” it is a reminder that no matter how bad things are, or where you are in your life, you can always start over and that every new breath holds infinite possibilities, you just need to take it. I had it done to celebrate a weightloss milestone, after years of struggling with my weight and having given up, I was inspired to try again and celebrated the success with the design to remind me, to always start again.
On my left inner wrist I have a stylised camera, perfect and pretty. I am a photographer and I am still learning to accept myself as an artist photographer. The tattoo is to symbolise that no matter what I do in my life, what job I do or what I take on, I will always carry that art and that need around in my heart.
On my wrist side wrist is a phrase saying “just be” with cherry blossoms. I am a fan of tattoos that remind me of important things, something visual that I can’t ignore. I am a perfectionist and often I push myself way too hard and end up way too stressed about things that I sometimes cannot control. This tattoo reminds me to just let go and to just be, just be in the moment and let everything else go.
Under my left collar bone are two paw prints. Earlier this year I had to put one of my furbabies to sleep. I had adopted him from a rescue as a partial feral and had spent weeks taming and bonding with him. Him and I had formed a very close bond and he used to drape his giant body (7.5kgs) body over my shoulder and cuddle into me like a baby. He got very sick and his mind regressed badly and he turned completely aggressive and violent, I still bear the scars, externally as well as internally and the hardest decision was made. The tattoo is a remembrance and a goodbye to him, his paw will always be on my heart.
My latest and largest piece so far is a snow leopard on my left shoulder. I wanted to have a tattoo done for munchkin but I have never liked the idea of tattooing his name onto my body, call me slightly superstitious about it. When I was thinking about what I could have done for him, the snow leopard kept popping up, everywhere. Suddenly I was seeing posters, TV program’s, images on facebook. I was surrounded by it. Considering that I believe in people have power/spirit animals, the snow leopard was obviously coming through very strongly as munchkins animal.
I went to my artist with one idea that I had found online and he came back with a different better design, it is done in black and white with only the eyes being blue, just as Munchkins eyes are blue.
So I guess the latest tattoo really does make me the cat lady 😉
How old were you when you got your first tattoo? I was 22
Which tattoo is your favourite and why? That is difficult, I love them all. My favourite one is probably the leopard. It really is just an amazing piece and I love being living art work.
Do you plan on getting more? Without a doubt. A second animal portrait will go under the leopard and I will still have a Phoenix back piece done.
How do your family and friends feel about your tattoo(s)? Well, I think my family has gotten used to the idea, and there are probably a few who don’t like it or who don’t like particular designs, my parents for example did not like the leopard because of the size and intensity.
Honestly though, tattoos are such personal things. If you are getting them for a specific reason then it doesn’t matter what anyone says.
Although my grandmother, really does not approve. 😉
What is the general reaction that “the Public” have towards your tattoo’s? Have you run into any negativity or adversity because of them? Children are fascinated, parents often become a little wary, but once they have spent time with me and seen me with their children most warm to me. I am not scary or intimidating, I am just a girl who likes decorating her body.
The public are most often fascinated with them when they spot them, I think because they are all different to what a lot of people have done. The few times people have seen the leopard I have gotten intense stares. I don’t look like the “type” of woman to get tattoos specially not big pieces so that really is most of the shock. I am an Aquarius though, lol I like the shock value.
Any advice for those interested in getting tattooed? Oh so much, but the most important one is.
Artist choice, this is not something that you want to go to a budget tattooist to, you want an ARTIST, someone who feels so strongly about his or her work that if they think it won’t look good, they won’t do it.
Get advice, word of mouth. Look at their work, just done and healed work. Ask what ink they use, use google and research. KNOW what you are doing to your body and then pay for the art. You are a walking canvas, you become walking art. Treat it as precious and pay accordingly.
Jose from Davidson Ink has done 5/6 of my pieces. He is in my mind a true artist at what he does and I would struggle trusting most people as I do him.