Una manica tatuata a colori con tanti fiori di ciliegio a unire gli elementi disegnati, tra cui il viso di una bella geisha, un laghetto con cascate d'acqua che passano sotto dei ponti che collegano piccoli templi orientali. Un samurai con un bambina sulla schiena osserva la scena e alle sue spalle uno splendido tramonto. Capolavoro tatuato dal miglior tatuatore italiano Jerry Magni, Como, Milano, Bergamo, Brescia, Varese, Mantova, Verona, Crema, Lecco.

Quick Expansion

More often than you can imagine, people who get a small tattoo later decide to expand it.

In previous articles I have already talked about some clients who started with relatively small tattoos and later decided to expand them to the entire arm and beyond. A decision that is usually made during the process or shortly after the completion of the first tattoo.
In this case, however, the decision to go bigger was almost immediate.

Initially, the client wanted a Samurai with a little girl on his shoulders and an Oriental temple in the background (representing himself, his daughter and his passion for Asian culture – not surprisingly he is an expert in martial arts). The tattoo had to occupy the outer arm, from shoulder to elbow.

Already during the first meeting, the area had expanded to the inside of the arm, but still not beyond the elbow.

After agreeing on the design we said our goodbyes, waiting to catch up as soon as I begun the drawing process.

However, it wasn’t long before he sent me messages with unfeasible requests, unless he was willing to increase the size of ​​the tattoo.

So we had to schedule another meeting in order to re-evaluate the project and the elements he wanted to add: a Japanese garden; a bridge; a waterfall; a Geisha; cherry blossoms and trees, and other elements I don’t remember.
Skimming through all his proposals, we focused on those that were feasible and in line with the project.

How many details in a tattoo?

Some clients want to include so many elements and details that it becomes necessary to set limits in order not to enter the realm of the impossible.

Luckily, In this case, the elements he wanted to add were many, but all in all they were almost all functional to the piece.

In particular, I was struck by the idea of ​​a bridge that filtered the rays of sunshine.
I decided to use that image as reference to insert a bridge over a small multi-level waterfall that ended in a pond into which a second larger waterfall flowed.

The idea was that of a series of small temples located on hills separated by streams, a sort of sacred complex immersed in a fairytale landscape, which the Samurai can only stop and admire. The sunset in the background would have created the “pretext” to create that light effect the client and I liked so much. Cherry trees integrated perfectly with the environment and fulfilled the client’s requests.

The Geisha is part of the composition without partaking in it, it departs from it, like a cross-faded illustration. Her melancholy and the fact that the little girl straddles the samurai (presumably her father) inspired the title. Finally, many, many (perhaps too many) cherry blossoms as separating, connecting and outlining elements for the entire scene.

My signature

What intrigues me most about creating full sleeve designs is studying infinite designs.

To make myself clear, the arm is basically a cylinder and if we had the possibility to rotate said “cylinder” the drawing would repeat itself indefinitely. To obtain this effect the elements, their positioning, the perspective, the interrupting elements etc. must all be carefully considered.

This type of sleeve development, along with the terminations with geometrical patterns around the shoulder and wrist, have become my signature for some time now.

Too many flowers?

This work, given its realistic style, the number of details and the level of finish, took longer than usual to complete.
There was no detail of this work that gave me rest, every detail is rich in effects and nuances.

The only area that allowed us to work in a relaxed and speedy manner was the waterfall, but certainly not for the client, who particularly suffered in that area.

Once the work was finished we had to wait for the end of the first Covid lock-down to be able to take pictures and make a video of the healed tattoo.

This was great because it allowed the tattoo to settle completely, too bad that in the meantime the client had already caught some sun darkening the lower arm, luckily not so much as to excessively compromise the pictures, but things would have been better without that slight tan.

Also a better shave wouldn’t have hurt, unfortunately I only noticed the hair after taking the pictures. I hope there will be another opportunity to take some new ones.

Apart from this, it’s definitely one of my most demanding works, and for this reason one of the works that has given me the most satisfaction, starting from the drawing up to the work on skin.

Below you can see the entire creative process, from the design to the final result.