Everyday People – Cody

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Cody has a special place in my heart as the first person to ever touch my skin…

…with a needle and ink!

I got my first one at Black Heart Tattoo on Valencia St in the Mission District, a colourful part of town where beanies, beards and trendy boutiques co-exist harmoniously alongside taquerias, Arabic tobacco shops and a crazy lady who wears lampshades on her head.

I liken the experience to getting my hair done but at a no-frills barber shop rather than a fancy salon:

“I got a 2pm appointment. That work for you?”

“How do you want it?”

“This style will look better.”

“Thanks and see ya later”

In & out. Straight down to business. As a professional tattoo artist Cody had probably inked hundreds of people. I was just 1 out of 500 and strangely I took comfort in his no small talk / no fuss approach. Whilst in the chair I asked him whether he could ever tattoo someone if he was feeling stressed out or emotional. He said he could because tattooing was therapeutic for him. It was also his job and after inking so many people he was able to just block it out and get on with it.

Thanks to Cody, this was my first and probably not my last paint job.

x Grandma AL



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