"Covered" Documentary: New Clips
04:58 PM

In April, we posted on the documentary on female tattooists and collectors called Covered.

Now the filmmaker, Dr. Beverly Yuen Thompson, of Snakegirl Productions has released even more clips from the film, including interviews that didn't make final cut like the video above (found here on YouTube).

As a daughter of an immigrant from a country that is not yet accepting of tattoos (but not paying taxes is ok), I completely relate to this clip of tattooed women who have to deal with the extreme cultural differences between their lives as first generation Americans and their immigrant parents. In one scene, the heavily tattooed Korean woman says that she has not seen her father in three years after revealing that she is tattooed--in my case it was only three months--but the grief of having that separation from one's family simply because we've decorated our skin is not limited to rare cases. I only wish these clips were not on the cutting room floor because the interviews are so powerful, but I'm glad they are available on YouTube.

Check other clips like this one on Jennifer Wilder and her apprenticeship under Johnny Williams of Abstract Art in Webster, TX. 

Wow. That clip really resonated with me. I'm still a bit gobsmacked. I always thought I was the only one who felt like these two women. I still talk with my family regularly, and see them at least once a year, but when I'm with them, it's like my tattoos don't exist. I have to think it's because they choose not to see them. My mother mostly thinks it's a waste of money. I don't think she could ever understand the why. Perhaps I'm underestimating here. Perhaps it's a generational thing. She still does not know about my backpiece-in-progress.

I am really glad you posted this. My family is armenian via way of lebanon so I am really deeply aware of the cultural forces at play here. Part of the issue is that most eastern or mediterranean cultures place more emphasis on the responsibilities of children to their parents than American culture does over all. As a result, many of us first generation immigrants are already struggling to show our parents that we are more than extensions of our family line, even when tattoos are not an issue. But bring the whole gender and tattoo situation into and, well, it can be a great recipe for family tensions.

ok, so this is rad!
thanks for the heads up

This was a fabulous video... I deeply identified with these women. A few years ago, I had my family's story tattooed on my back as the beginning of an elaborate back piece. When my parents found out - my mother being Japanese, and my father adopting much of her distaste - they were outraged and refused to talk to me. However, three years later, they don't mind seeing them as much, but demand that I be covered in public if I am with them. Any more tattoos are out of the question, naturally, if I am to continue in their good graces.

I know many women with ties to family from Korea or Japan who have stunning work, but cover up for fear of their families' reaction, or who really want one, but won't go under the needle for the same reasons.

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