By Simi Johnston Simi Johnston is a student at Sarah Lawrence College who works in mixed media arts and studies gender theory. She grew up in vermont and recently went on birth-control. A week after my 20th birthday, I had my first naked photo taken of me. At the time, I was in Alaska with my family. With thousands of miles separated us from society, … Continue reading A Naked First
Caroline Biggs is a graduate student in Women’s History at Sarah Lawrence College, fashion addict, pop cultural junkie, and girl-about-NYC.
So I want to start by saying I have never really been a “tattoo person.” I quote and marginalize said persons because I always saw those who reveled in permanent body art (and I’m not talking about the occasional small of the back or hip tattoo) as committed to a lifestyle decision: that of being a woman who expresses herself via bodily adornment (that lasts FOREVER mind you). Unlike fashion, which constantly shifts and evolves stylistically, tattoos were more like a piece of statement jewelry—something that doesn’t define the person’s aesthetic but definitely functions as the focal point. And being the fashionista that I am, complete with outfits that are more often than not comparable to that of a costumed figure skater, the last thing I ever needed was to draw more attention to myself.
Then, at 18, after a weekend of heavy drinking and amidst the low-rise jean craze that I fell victim to, I got my first tattoo—a cartoonish flower on the small of my back that did not and will not ever represent anything symbolic other than being 18 and saying I had a tattoo. The entire process took about 4 and a half minutes (all of which I was crying from the pain of the needle) and I left Manhattan, Kansas forever marked with, well, a fuchsia cartoon flower. I was sure that was all of the tattooed symbolism I would ever need.
I am so sorry it has been so long, dear readers! I’ve been over here soaking in the summer sun, whittling away my gobs of free time (I wish, haha! Picture a wry, slightly sarcastic face saying that) wee bits of free time working with my hands rather than my head. It has been a big shift, even from past summers, when I was apt … Continue reading The Silence in Here is Deafening!