Rewind: remember how the whole point of this trip was to get a tattoo? I guess we should get to that. I left Berlin around 6:30 a.m. the day before my appointment to get to a small city near the Austrian-Czech border called Znojmo. It's a cute little city. I love the Czech Republic from what I've seen of it so far; it has a really nice vibe, very welcoming and homey. It's relatively inexpensive, as Europe goes. You can always find an adorable little restaurant somewhere with a warm atmosphere and warm food, and incredibly warm people too.
And then, after a year and a half of waiting and thinking and planning, tattoo day!
A bit of background on my tattoo, my artist, and the whole reason for this: as I mentioned, I came across Ondrash on the internet and fell in love with his work. I wanted something watercolour; the problem was I didn't know exactly what. I had a very short list of artists who I thought did justice to the watercolour style, so I started doing a bit of research, in the process of which I came across this blog post by a client of his - a very detailed explanation of how he works. What caught my attention was her description of how he takes the time to get to know his clients, and how he incorporated that into his art.
That pretty much sold me. When I got to the appointment, we talked for probably about an hour - about my photography, about my love for travel, and of course what I wanted for ink. I pointed out some of his previous tattoos that I really loved. We got distracted by the solar eclipse, which oddly enough was the same day, so we ran out to the square where everyone had gathered to look at it. Once we got back to the studio, he disappeared for about half an hour to draw up a draft of the design which, three and a half hours later, would be on my arm.
He was an absolutely wonderful artist and individual to work with. I'm very happy with it.
Ondrash: Facebook | Website | Instagram
My final few days were in Prague. This was the only place on this trip I had been to before - for a grand total of about 48 hours last year. Enough to fall in love with it. It's an amazing city. I don't know what it is, but I have never felt more at home in a place that wasn't Calgary. I'm so comfortable there - which in some ways is absurd, because I don't speak Czech (and for all the times I've tried to learn it doesn't happen; it's such a strange language), and I have no Czech heritage or anything. But there's something almost magical about it that completely captivates me.
It was a good vacation. It's nice to have the time to take a step back from work and general responsibility-type-things and focus pretty much exclusively on shooting. I shot almost 2000 images this trip, and pushed myself more and more every day. And at the end of it, I'm happy with what I came back with.