Strength becomes permanent with help of first tattoo and Eleanor Roosevelt

March 13, 2010

Tattoo on Julia's upper back

A friend and wonderful lady, Julia Rimsky Baumann, got her first tattoo a little while back; and I thought I’d see what she had to say about her experience. 

So in Q&A form, here you go!

Which tattoo artist at the Baltimore Tattoo Museum did your tattoo?

Laura Rachel

Did you research before picking this tattoo artist and tattoo shop, was the artist/shop recommended to you, or did you just walk in? If you researched then made an appointment, was their a wait list, or were you able to get an appointment pretty quickly?

I went to the Baltimore Tattoo Museum because it was recommended to me by a close friend. I went online and checked out the artists. The owner was first recommended to me, but when I checked out his artwork, I wasn’t so impressed. But when I saw Laura’s art I was blown away. She has incredible attention to detail, and that’s what was important to me since this will probably be the only tattoo I’ll ever get. I wanted it to be as perfect as possible.

I called the shop on the one “clear-ish” day between blizzards and made an appointment to see Laura that day as soon as I could get there. Because of the crappy roads and crappier parking, it took me about 90 minutes to actually get in the door.

Eleanor Roosevelt said these words that make your tattoo. Any special reason why you chose this saying that you’d like to share?

Eleanor Roosevelt was (and is, because her spirit lives on) a profound and impactful woman. This particular quote has helped me be brave when I wanted to be a coward and has helped make me into the person I am today. Every time I read the quote to myself I feel strong again.

Anything else about the design that you’d like to share: the yellow flames, the pentagram within the circle? 

The flames are both a symbol of strength and also of the need to burn away the old and make room for the new. The pentagram is a connection to my spirituality as a witch and is also a symbolic connection to the Earth (the pentagram is always in the northern position on an altar, which is the position for Earth), and the Earth is the strongest physical thing in existence, I think.

Overall, did you enjoy the experience? Would you get more tattoos? Anything else about the experience that you’d like to share.

The experience was peaceful and smooth. It didn’t hurt much, and felt more like someone was dragging a wooden stick across my skin. The only parts that got a little sore were the flames because there are actually 5 layers of colors there, and by layer 5 it began to feel like someone was rubbing a Brillo pad across sunburn.

I might get one more tattoo someday, but it took me 10 years to get this one, so the next one might take another 10!

Did you take some time to look at the Baltimore Tattoo Museum’s tattoo exhibit while you were there? If so, anything stand out for you as you looked through electric tattoo history?

The Tattoo Museum was covered with pictures of the art of famous and infamous tatttoo artists. It was interesting and a little disturbing. Tattooing is a rather dark art and some of the artwork reflects that. It was a small but clean space and the artists were nice and polite. But there was still an air of badassness that probably makes the place, and the art of tattooing, appealing to a lot of people.

Personally, I didn’t get the tattoo to be a badass. I just wanted Eleanor’s words to be on my skin, with me always, as they have been for many years, just in a pretty and different way.

Thanks so much, Julia, for sharing this with HRR! ________________________________________________________________________________________________________

If you have a tattoo story that you’d like to share, please give us a shout, and thanks for reading!

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4 Responses to “Strength becomes permanent with help of first tattoo and Eleanor Roosevelt”


  1. i absolutely love your writing style, very charming,
    don’t quit and also keep posting considering the fact that it simply just very well worth to look through it,
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  2. Ishita Says:

    In young generation tattoo is very hot fashion trend. It has also a sense of traditional essence. Tattoo expresses our mind. Thanks a lot for sharing us about your story. I love your writing ………

  3. Liz Says:

    I have to say that being a heavily tattooed female I do not relate to anyone in popular history with tattoos or who was even remotely alternative I did not admire Marilyn monroe. Audrey Hepburn is my hero that being said. I do not believe tattoos determine someones personality or interests. I am 25 year old female that enjoys every genre of music and movie. I just wish society could look past the outer exterior of a person and see what’s within. I know this may have nothing to with the topic at hand but it’s what I believe. I believe of you have a tattoo it may have a meaning too you… but that’s the beauty of it… It’s your meaning your expression your nothing and you should not have to explain it to anyone. It is for you an no one else just my opinion I do everything for me no one else

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