**Update! The winning ink is actually a combination of the first and second place winners.  I’m getting a phoenix with a string of wildflowers in its beak, for my Nana who loved her flower gardens.  A four-leafed clover will be drawn into the flowers for my Mom.  I go for session 1 (the outline) on Feb. 23. PSYCHED!!  Thanks to all who voted!**

My darling husband has offered to purchase my next tattoo as a gift for my upcoming birthday.  Since I have several ideas bumping around at once, I’m using a lifelife and asking the audience.

Idea #1: Something to commemorate my children, possibly just their names in fancy font. Alone or with symbols/animal representations of their zodiac signs (Scorpion and Lion, would have to search online for sample pics). Potential problem here could be if I have a third child… would have to allow for expansion!  Location would be around my right calf, where a piece of flash already exists (hoping I can cover that up or incorporate it into the new design).  Willing to compromise, as I really would love to have my boys’ names done.

Idea #2: A phoenix. I’ve wanted this tattoo for years now. A colorful, fantasy-like phoenix on my left calf, with long tailfeathers snaking around my ankle down onto the top of my foot. I love the symbolism of the phoenix; since I’ve been through my share of tragedy and crisis, it would be very poignant. Pitfalls… this might be the most expensive given the size and amount of color.

Idea #3: Something to commemorate my mother, since she’s ill at the moment… and I’ve always wanted a way to show her and my grandmother how much I love them.  My mom has a thing for four-leafed clovers, and both she and my Nana love birds and flowers. My Nana’s house had a gorgeous clematis vine that grew long and lush around her front door, in deep purple blossoms.  I could see something like that climbing around my leg.  Problem is, this idea and the phoenix idea are using the same piece of real estate on my body.  And I kinda want to get just a four-leafed clover on my chest in the same spot where my mom’s port is that is used for her chemo treatments.  I think maybe I’m too close too this issue at the moment.  Hmm…

Idea #4: The dragon from the inside cover of Stephen King’s The Eyes of the Dragon novel.  This book was possibly my first favorite “grown-up” book (graduated from Judy Blume to Stephen King, so I read this a looooong time ago).  I always have and always will be attached to the mystical side of my imagination. I believe in faeries and woodland sprites and tree dryads and all of the other endless array of probably made-up-stuff that I hope will be real when I get to Heaven.  Anyhoo, this dragon is my favorite and he’d go on my right shoulder, slightly casading down to my upper arm. I’d need a good artist to elaborate on what already exists in the sample drawing:  Click here for a sample image

So what do you guys think?  More importantly, anyone know super talented tattoo artists in the Charlotte or Asheville, NC areas?

Vote now, and thanks!