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damianobianchi1We are continuing to search for new interesting artists for our project worldwide and the most important criteria for us is that we like their tattoos. Today we have a guest from the amazing city of Rome. Damiano plays in the Neo Steampunk band POISON GARDEN and on 24th February 2017, their debut album will be released via Trisol Music Group. But let see now what he will tell us about his tattoos.

Reflections of Darkness [RoD]: When did you get your first tattoo and what was it? Did it take much time until you decided to get it done?
Damiano: Well, first of all thanks a lot for this interview, tattoos have always been an important part of my way to declare who I am, and it’s a pleasure to talk to you all about them. The first one I got is the letter “A” inserted in a circle, of course is the “Anarchy” sign. I was fifteen and in the nineties there was a huge punk scene in Rome where I lived, I was just a boy but in my mind words like “revolution”, “riot”, “antagonism” grew fast, I was sick about the mainstream way of life, mainstream music, and also about the political situation, I used to think that also a little thing like have a little tattoo could make a difference. That little sign for me is like a voice that screams: “I’m not like you”. I didn’t think too much to get tattooed; one of the old punks I knew got out of jail and said “I’ll start to make tattoos” and in a couple of weeks he bought all the stuff and some other punks started to get tattooed so I said, “ok I’m the next one!”.

RoD: How many tattoos do you have? Could you please tell us their story?
Damiano: I actually have 11 tattoos, every one of them has a single story but I think it will be annoying for you if I write so many words. I can tell the story of my favourite one, a little Charlie Brown on my groin. Charlie represent the innermost part of me, a little child so insecure and afraid to make mistakes. Inside my heart, so far from the stages, guitars, yelling audiences and heavy music, I use to staring at a window watching the rainfall asking to myself if what I make is really good and I am really afraid to make mistakes and to remain alone, just like my little Charlie Brown.

RoD: Have you already got all the tattoos that you wanted or will you get some new ones in the future?
Damiano: haha, well I definitely will get more tattoos, I'm actually thinking about a two more…

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RoD: Have all your tattoos been done by one tattoo artist or by different ones? How do you choose the tattoo artist? In addition, who draws your sketches?
Damiano: I like to travel and get tattooed by different tattoo artists, I choose them by friends’ suggestions, or scrolling some tattoo magazines, or after saw them working in some tattoo conventions. Normally I have an idea that I talk to the tattoo artist and I trust in his or her way of drawing it. I always choose an artist for his style so normally I want to have something on my skin that represent my feelings but also the “art” of the tattoo artist so I trust their advice and I let them freedom to draw the subject.

RoD: Getting tattooed hurts, how do you cope with the pain during the sessions?
Damiano: The hurting is one of the most important part of getting tattooed, pain makes tattoos important, they become, through the pain, something that really matters. Without pain tattoos would be only decorations.

RoD: Do you regret getting tattooed sometimes?
Damiano: No, never.

RoD: What is your taboo in terms of tattoos? What kind of tattoo would you never get done and don’t like to see on other people?
Damiano: I don’t really know, I don’t like sexual stuff or too much explicit images, but I think that everyone is free to get the tattoos he wants.

RoD: Some people say that the drive to acquire body art is addictive while others say it fails to meet the true definition of an addiction, simply calling it a passion. Is it really impossible to stop?
Damiano: I don’t really know, is a very intimate and personal thing. I don’t think to have an addiction, I like tattoos and I like to see my body with tattoos on it so probably I will get other drawings on my skin, but probably one day this feeling could change.

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RoD: Last Year’s tattoos are a new trend; many people do not care about the meaning, they just want to have something coloured on the skin, to be in trend. Those people often just go into a tattoo salon and ask which drafts they have. Tattoo artists are not artists any more, they produce consumer goods. Not all of them, of course. How do you feel about this situation?
Damiano: Everything nowadays became so easy to have, and a lot of people want to emulate their idols, and everything became a “trend”. For me, every sign on my skin represent a passage to another stage of evolution of myself, but for many cultures tattoos are also a distinctive sign of a specific group, so I don’t mind if a lot of people has the same tattoo. Probably a lot of punks have an anarchy sign on their skin, but not necessarily my tattoo is less important just because is shared by a lot of people.

RoD: I would like to talk about the social aspect of tattoos, too. Previously, many people believed that if you have a tattoo, you will be never be successful and will not find a "good" job. Have this state of mind and people's perceptions changed or are these prejudices still alive?
Damiano: Well, in Italy probably there is some prejudice yet, but things are changing. Nowadays is not so easy to find a top manager with tattoos on the neck, but probably in the future no one will judge tattooed people.

RoD: Which advice would you give to people who are going to get their first tattoo? How to choose a tattoo artist? Colour or black and white? Any practical advice?
Damiano: My only advice is to think carefully about getting a tattoo. Tattoos are forever and every day of your life, that tattoo, will bring you some memories and sometimes, memories are synonyms of regrets. If you don’t fear your regrets but you consider them as part of your personal growth, don’t think too much and get your first memory on your skin. In a much more practical way, please, choose a professional tattoo artist, not a guy who works in his house but in professional studio with the latest machines and with all the hygiene and safety you need. Remember, your health is much more important than saving some money.

Project by Daria Tessa and Daniela Vorndran, Interview by Daria Tessa
Pictures by Amyas Gothique


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