SEATTLE -- Tattoos are no longer just for bikers and sailors. At the Seattle Tattoo Expo, organizers say they're for people who want to wear their art, rather than hang it on a wall.
At the Expo, fans and practitioners get to share the joy and artistry of a centuries-old art. There are displays of new equipment and inks, and most of all, every imaginable design you could want in color or black-and-gray. Every adult here seems to have a tattoo, from the artist to the musician to the waitress in the beer garden.
And then, there's Jared.
The molecular biologist is getting a full-body tattoo in the Japanese "munewara" style. When completed over the next year and a half, the tattoo will do down Jared's front, back, forearms and to his knees, with just an empty strip along the chest. The design, being created by artist Bryan Kachel of Cicada Tattoo at 103rd and Aurora, includes Nordic mythological gods and creatures as well as Japanese woodblock-type waves.
"People are pretty amazed by it," grinned Jared. "Mostly because of the size of it."
Jared described the tattoo process as "like being stung multiple times by a hornet." The pain plus the cost (about $140 an hour) makes this "definitely a big commitment."
The Expo is located in the Northwest Rooms at Seattle Center. Admission is $15/day. Hours: Friday 2-10 pm; Saturday noon-10 pm; Sunday noon-8pm.