Not too long before leaving the country last October, I received an email from Professor Minna Nilanont, of Prince George’s Community College, about sharing some thoughts, feedback, and experiences in tattoo land, covering a few items of interest.
Honored, excited, and nervous, we started collaborating on a public event that would be great for college life. Since this is a series, we originally had a storm of ideas that included presented other artists and viewpoints. However, I think our ideas were larger than life and we’ll maybe need more time to put things together. Hopefully, it can happen again, but even if not … this time was certainly a job well done and time well spent, for sure!
For this time, our first but hopefully not our last, we decided that we would do a screening of the tattoo documentary, Color Outside the Lines. Afterwards, we’d have a small panel discussion with myself and Professor Risikat I Okedeyi, and moderated by Professor Terésa Dowell-Vest. Complete with guests greeted with warm smiles by hostesses, Professors Julie Seigel and Nilanont and movie refreshments, it was time to get poppin’!
My beau was there as moral support and my mom decided to surprise me and attend the lecture. Boy was I happy they were both around! Even with them there, though, there are a number of reasons I was nervous- meeting strangers for the first time, talking to a group of unknowns, not sure how our message would be received, etc. all made me panic like nobody’s business. >.< So what do I do?! I go to the bathroom (for about the one hundredth time) take my sweater off to dry out a bit form sweating, give myself a pep talk! “IKB (←YES! I really call myself by my initials … it’s MUCH shorter than screaming at myself with my full name haha) Get yourself together! You KNOW this stuff and though this isn’t your normal background, you’re still in your element. Speak from your heart and be honest. You got this yah . Now STOP being a lil’ b!tch and get out there, *smile*, and kick some arse! Besides, everyone’s nice & you seem to be in good company. So you have no worries! Ok? OK?!), and take a selfie.
BOOM! I’m ready to go 😛
(*oooohhhh kill ’em!)
Our panel discussion was roughly 30 minutes. We talked about tattoos and communication, different trends, how to spot a good/ CLEAN tattoo shop, how to choose an artist, experiences in tattoo land as a black female, Black Ink Crew & their baboonery … and so much more~
For me to have been nervous, it was a great conversation and superb energy. I’m sooooo thankful! *huhuhu*
From the bottom of my heart, THANK YOU Minna, Risikat, Terésa, Julie and attendees for your kindness & welcoming warmth. I can’t speak for everyone else, but nerves and all, I had a wonderful time!
For those of you who haven’t checked out Color Outside the Lines yet, PLEASE do so! It’s now free on Youtube, so there are NO excuses. *nyan!*
Happy Tattoo Tuesday loves & be sure to paint your day bright!