Childhood Tattoos

SZA


In November 2015, SZA got this tattoo on her collarbone of a maple log and leaf as a tribute to the town of Maplewood, NJ where she grew up.  She told Complex:

I was born in St. Louis, but I’m from Maplewood, New Jersey. Maplewood is completely different than the rest of New Jersey. It’s very small. It’s quietly affluent but more lowkey. Lauryn Hill is from my town though. It was predominantly white, Jewish. I went to school with all white kids and my Girl Scout troop everyone was white. I was being the token black everyday.

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Marzia Bisognin


Marzia got this tattoo on her right forearm in October 2016 at the same time as the lemon tree on her opposite arm.  It is two hands making shadow puppets which reminds her of memories of her childhood. She explained on her blog how making shadow puppets helps her sleep and makes her feel less alone:

The second one I got is hands forming a shadow puppet. This brings me back, all the way to my childhood, but is still relevant to this day.

I don’t know if this happens in all kindergartens, but in mine, after lunch, the teachers would put all the kids in a room and made them sleep.

I never ever managed to fall asleep, not once, whilst all the other kids would sleep normally.

You may already know that I didn’t really like going to kindergarten at all – I would cry every morning, I would get closed in the lunch room cause I didn’t finish eating food I didn’t like – and sleeping time also wasn’t a big favourite of mine.

What I eventually came up with was to make shadow puppets with my hands, and make them talk to me quietly, so I wouldn’t feel so lonely.

Still to this day, at times, I have troubles sleeping: generally I can make myself relaxed enough by thinking about a train passing by on a summer night (I used to live near one, and although it may seem like a very annoying and loud thing to find relaxing, I used to love it as a kid), but if that doesn’t work, I will go back to my shadow puppet hands.

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Melanie Martinez


Melanie Martinez has a tattoo on her left calf of the children’s book character Madeline along with a quote from the series.  In the stories, Madeline lives in a Catholic boarding school in Paris.  She and her schoolmates always say a prayer before they eat their meals: “We love our bread, we love our butter, but most of all, we love each other.” It is a reminder that the people in our lives are the most important thing.  Melanie included this prayer in her tattoo, which features Madeline holding a loaf of bread and is surrounded by little pink hearts. It was inked by artist Nat G at Good Luck Tattoo in January 2016.

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Melanie Martinez


Melanie Martinez got this tattoo on her left calf from artist Shon Lindauer at High Seas Tattoo Parlor in Los Angeles in November 2015. It is a red wagon with a pillow and Z’s to represent the naps that she took in her own little wagon when she was a young girl. She has posted a picture of herself as a child napping in the wagon while being pulled around by an adult and she has also used a wagon as a prop in a photoshoot. Much of Melanie’s lyricism is based around childhood memories like this and the metaphors that they represent. (more…)


    MØ has a Moomin tattoo on my right leg.
    On an interview she sais she grew up watching The Moomins television show all the time, and her father used to work a lot in Finland and would always bring home Moomin gifts.

      Melanie Martinez


      Melanie Martinez has a tattoo on her left forearm of a Kewpie doll in a pink rabbit costume carrying an ice cream cone. She got this tattoo from Lauren Winzer in June 2015 along with three others.  The design is inspired by two childhood memories, which she recalled to Fuse:

      This one is based off of a couple experiences from when I was a kid.  My first word was “mine.” It happened when I was in my walker in my driveway and my dad snatched an ice cream out of my hand and I just screamed “mine!”…like “Give me my ice cream! Why’d you take my ice cream?”  And then there’s a picture of me outside dressed as a bunny…So I just did a little Kewpie baby dressed as a bunny, holding ice cream that’s melting, just to mix the two experiences.

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