As we approach the Autumn Equinox, NYC is finally starting to feel like fall. Part of my love affair with this city is knowing I’ll get to experience all of the seasons to their fullest. Hands down Autumn has been my favorite season since I was a kid. Hot cider, fall fashion, fiery foliage colors, the scent of burning fireplaces and fragrant stews; the promise of Halloween, pumpkin pie spice, costumes and candy; The Witches New Year, rituals and magick.
My second tattoo ever was an autumnal piece done by Rodney (RIP) of the Lion’s Den Tattoo in New Hope, PA. Experiencing the season in this little historic village along the Delaware River is hard to top, so I got a tattoo of a 7-pointed Faerie Star encircled with autumn leaves and acorns on my wrist. Merely thinking I was decorating myself with a symbol of my spiritual path and my favorite time of year, it has since become a stamp of my life’s pattern. Fall is the season of change. The verdant world of summery green and floral perfumes shifting into a deeper, earthier evolution, all making way for the darker half of the year. My life is in a constant state of THIS. It’s not always as dramatic as I’m making it sound. Sometimes, more seldom thankfully, it’s like a sledgehammer and other times it’s subtle and gentle. But it’s always present and I’m always aware.
(Above, freshly done circa 2002)
Last year around this time I was gearing up to head down to New Orleans for Halloween. It was just around that time: Hurricane Sandy decided she had other plans for me and NYC. All reservations and flights cancelled, I decided to take advantage of the week at home and start hunting for a new tattoo shop to work from. I was making my game plan and started a list of places to hit up when I came across this one interesting spot in Williamsburg called Twelve 28 Tattoo. The first thing that struck me was the page of artist bios. I marveled that they were all female and with these fabulously glam pinup-like headshots! To me it seemed a bit of a holy grail discovery but even moreso when I actually had my interview and found they were all really down-to-earth folks with an even cooler shop vibe. I fit right in and it was the perfectly natural and next place for me to be.
Hoping to make it to my anniversary mark with them in November, real estate developers shifted our course as they make their way through the Williamsburg area buying, demolishing and building. New, tall, gleaming structures erasing all of the old, historic vibe-y spots and 28 Marcy Avenue was no exception. The wood planked flooring spoke volumes of its past. Apparently, our particular space at one time produced the gold leafing on the sides of bibles! There are rumors of a ghost even inhabiting the space. All the stuff that my old NYC dreams are made of, soon to become something with much less character but much more profitability.
It’s hard to find a place in this world where you fit in. Even harder still, to find folks that you can exist and flow with, be creative around and even call like family. I’ll miss us all being in the same room together but I feel lucky that I’ve met such kick ass people and that we are all making an effort to stick together in some way. We found a pretty sweet spot just “next door” in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. Twelve 28’s owner Joy Rumore and Gianna Galli are moving to their own private studios in October. I’ve been working in a shared room with Dorothy Lyczek since early September. While adjusting to the new digs, we’re still working together, almost as a collective, and tattooing up a storm. We are all now working by-appointment-only, so if you want to have a consult or set up an appointment just email us individually. Even though this pushes us all to focus on ourselves as independent artists and business-ladies, we’re still remaining a pretty tight support network for eachother and I love that with a passion! I’m sure Chris Wednesday will still breeze through to do some work here and there. And I better still see Miss Roxie around (my favorite shop girl EVER. I seriously am gonna miss this pretty little Baby Bat in my daily life).
Here’s to the season of change! Gotta go dust off my broomstick now…