Saturday, March 17, 2018

CD Odyssey - the tattoo!

For a few years I've been trying to think of ways to commemorate my passion for music into a new tattoo (long time readers will know I have a few). After almost nine years and over 1,100 album reviews nothing expresses my love for music like the CD Odyssey. Also, the story of the Odysseus' long journey home to Ithaca has a ready-made storehouse of great imagery, and also expresses the importance of perseverance.

I toyed with what section of the book would make the best tattoo, but in the end I settled on Odysseus navigating his ship between Scylla (a six-headed sea monster) and Charybdis (another monster depicted as a giant whirlpool).

Here's the whole thing - I like to think it would make a pretty bitchin' mural for a seventies panel van. It also works as a back tattoo (click any of the photos below to embiggen):

On the left side of the piece, Scylla, angrily emerges to threaten the crew. In the story, Odysseus makes the difficult decision to sail a bit closer to Scylla, and she eats six of his crew. Maybe that represents the albums I've parted with along the way...
 In the middle we find the ship, oars in, bravely pushing through the hazards. There are two musical references incorporated into the ship. The one is obvious - the Blue Oyster Cult symbol on the flag. Blue Oyster Cult is one of my favourite bands of all time, and one of my earliest experiences with music. My brother has a BOC symbol on his arm as well, and this gave me a feeling of kinship with him. The other musical reference is a bit more subtle, but I'll let you spot that on your own.

And finally, Charybdis. A whirlpool could make for a pretty boring tattoo element, but my artist (Leroy from Union Tattoo) is a master at his craft and has made this look amazing, with churning, water surrounded by dangerous reefs. Charybdis also incorporates another musical element with the centre of the vortex being the centre of a speaker.
One day my journey may reach its own metaphorical Ithaca but I'm not overly worried about when or whether that will happen. In the meantime, I have a new tattoo to celebrate my love of myth, music, and the choices we make along the way.

1 comment:

Gord Webster said...

Good to see you got a band reference in there!