I get new tattoos quite spontaneously. Usually when I come up with an idea, I either tattoo it myself within the same week or book an appointment to another tattooist. Most of my tattoos are self-made.
The whole idea to my seal pup tattoos was actually a joke at first (Kuutti in English = a seal pup). The other pup is a kind one, which reflects my true nature, but I also know how to be an angry pup if necessary.
I’ve noticed that my looks sometimes confuse people. Often they assume that because I’m pierced and tattooed, I must be a harsh and tough person, but in reality, I’m very much the opposite – a wussy seal pup who wants everybody to be happy.
The tattoo on my back is maybe the most personal of my tattoos. It reflects me and my inner self. Kaija Papu is one of my favorite tattooists – I just love their style. This tattoo wonderfully depicts the feeling of chaos that I wanted it to represent.
This tattoo has a lot of meanings in general. It reflects the balance that I try to achieve with myself. Although I may seem like an easy-going person, at the same time I’m often scared. The tattooing itself was a very therapeutic experience. The tattoo was made in three parts, and during the process, I dealt with many painful things that I had in my life. Now, as the tattoo is ready and always with me, I notice how it has helped me to get on with my life.
My first real tattoos were two diamonds that I got in Lahti when I was 18 years old. I say my first real tattoos because when I was 16 or 17, I went to someone who tattooed eyebrows and made so-called tattoos with the same equipment. I insisted my mom give me permission and after she said yes, I went to get two stars on my chest. Because the ink was what it was, those stars have completely faded away during the years.
And the diamond tattoos – well, the other has already been covered up and I guess I’ll cover up the other one in the future as well. Although they were tattooed in a real tattoo shop, they were poorly made so they don’t look that good.
When I decide to get tattooed by some other artist, I want to choose someone who’s on the same wavelength as I am. I like Leena Lumilampi both as a person and tattoo artist, and I can hardly wait to see when her new bookings open! As I already mentioned, I also admire Kaija Papu’s work because no other Finnish artist has the same kind of style.
There are many other artists who I appreciate a lot. I highly value Tuula Aikioniemi and hope that I’ll get a tattoo by her somewhere in the future. And of course Sarppa! I don’t have any of Sarppa’s artwork on my skin yet. Also the tattoo studio Rönkkö & Moberg in Tampere has a great and relaxed atmosphere.
I’ve wanted to choose only safe people around me. Since I’m happy to work in my little studio, I don’t know much about the tattoo scene on a global scale. During the past five years I’ve noticed that the number of female artists has grown a lot, and there are great new talents rising all the time.
I like many tattoo styles, and someone might even call me a walking sticker book. Lately, I’ve been especially interested in blackwork, and I also love old school. I usually prefer rougher tattoo styles in general, yet I’d also love to get some delicate and beautiful floral tattoos on my back.
Often our little ones make jokes about my new tattoos and ask if I have considered them beforehand at all. You know, when a 7-year-old kid asks you something like that, you just have to show a good example and answer that everything’s considered, and you should remember to thoroughly consider your tattoos as well in the future.
On the other hand, I think that this future generation might grow up getting no tattoos at all. I guess that since we parents are so often tattooed, kids don’t even find them particularly interesting. A while ago our kid’s kindergarten group visited the workplaces of us parents, so they came to visit the tattoo studio as well. So there I was, trying to show a group of kids a tattoo machine, explain how it works and what you can do with it. The kids, however, seemed to be more fascinated by the fact that they were in a place where they could get some juice to drink.
Tua Musakka has tattooed my Shetland sheepdog Tinka on my calf. I got Tinka when she was a couple of years old, and she has now traveled with me for nine years. Together we have experienced heartaches, leaving from moldy home and all the other stuff. She has stood by me for all these years and shared a huge part of my life. And still, she is always so excited and happy about everything that happens around her.
Even though I may get new tattoos on a whim, many of them have a real idea behind them. The text Pitäiskö (in English: Should I) reminds that you shouldn’t say no to cool ideas just because you’re afraid. If you think ”should I”, then you definitely should – it will be great, and if it isn’t, at least you’ve tried.
904 derives from a certain funny occasion. Once my partner and I were camping in Hailuoto, and we ended up in a lean-to. As we were sitting there, we dreamed of having some coffee with us. In the corner of the lean-to, there was a small locker with a combination lock, and I started to scroll the numbers just for fun. As I reached the number 904, the lock suddenly clicked open, and inside the locker we found – surprise, surprise – coffee, water, and a coffee pot. Still, we both remember these numbers whenever something good and unexpected happens.
The bottle tattoo also reminds me of a special coincidence. Years ago, I saw a “message in a bottle”-themed flash by Pyry Ruuskanen, and I loved the design so much that I decided to get it on my skin. A little while after that, I met my partner. At those times, my partner had a wall poster that included a picture of a petrol bomb. Already before that, I had been thinking that maybe I could be sorted as some kind of anarchist due to my world view. So there, at my partner’s home, I looked at this tattoo and the petrol bomb on the wall, and as I noticed they pretty much looked the same, I burst into laughter. Here we are: I have a Molotov’s cocktail tattooed on my skin!
The quote on my leg (in English: I always sing louder than permitted) is from a song called Nuoruustango by Milla Rumi. I just love the Pippi Longstocking-ish atmosphere of the song, and I feel strongly related to its message. You shouldn’t give in to other people’s opinions about what you should look like and be like. If someone says you can’t do something in a certain way, then do it exactly that way, and do it even bigger.