crowdsourcing a tattoo

I practice a disorganized religion. I belong to an unholy disorder. We call ourselves “Our Lady of Perpetual Astonishment.” – Vonnegut

I’ve been mulling over this tattoo for a few years now and I believe it’s nearing fruition. I’d like to ask for input from all of you especially the scientists and artists in the crowd.

The general idea is the beauty of the universe from the subatomic to the galactic. I’m fairly happy with the individual images shown below although I’m open to suggestion. More importantly, I don’t know how to pull all of them together. It’s going to be a large, black ink only and running from just below my armpit to above my knee. The best idea I have for pulling everything together is a tree. It’s not a bad idea and it would allow me to put the names of favorite scientists in the leaves but I have a feeling that there is something better out there. Any ideas on how to create a cohesive whole would be most appreciated.

Here are the individual images.

for the subatomic, a feynman diagram of a quark-quark interaction (lower left), a fitting tribute to one of my favorite scientists:

Feynman diagram - use quark

for the atomic level:

atom of atheism

wordpress does terrible at formatting text and images so the complete list of explanation will be here followed by the images:

molecular level:  the structure of a nucleotide and amino acid, two of the basic building blocks of life on earth and a classic animal cell:

cell: the bottom of the nucleotide will blend into a classic image of an animal cell

organism: next will be an ant, the pinnacle of evolution

ecosystem: darwin’s original tree of life will branch off the ant

planet: a classic shot earth

galactic: fades into blackwork (all black) around my lower thigh with the stars left uninked

single strand dnaamino-acids

bw animal cellant

tree of lifeearth

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9 Responses to “crowdsourcing a tattoo”


  1. 1 pelger October 31, 2009 at 9:09 pm

    kurt suggested a dna helix to tie it all together. i’m leaving the idea in the comments because this is now my info dump for the idea.

  2. 2 pelger October 31, 2009 at 9:12 pm

    goody’s ideas (both very godo):

    this image for the earth: http://www.zazzle.ca/earth_tree_sticker-217618696950475692

    have the compounds inside of the cell, with the cell making up the head or abdomen of the ant…abdomen would give you more room for detail, with the ant on a branch of a very large tree sprouting off of the earth, like so: http://www.facebook.com/l/;images.clipartof.com/small/28096-Clipart-Illustration-Of-A-Lush-Green-Tree-Growing-On-Top-Of-The-Green-Earth-With-A-Grassy-Texture-Over-White.jpg

  3. 3 Neal Leininger November 1, 2009 at 2:48 am

    2 words : Microprocessor Ants

  4. 4 Jim November 3, 2009 at 3:39 pm

    I think if you are going to have that much ink some homage to the historical advances that lead to the majority of the atomic discoveries. As a man of letters, I am sure you would support the idea that the historical lineage of scientific discovery should be celebrated.

  5. 5 Mikey November 3, 2009 at 5:01 pm

    Sorry, i posted that on the wrong entry. So I am reposting it here. I think that you should end it with a Lex-like Ape staring out of the hair of your armpit.

  6. 6 Sarah November 4, 2009 at 8:27 am

    Hmmm…. tough one – I like the one for the atomic level, and a DNA helix would be look fantastic down your side. I still see you as a kokopelli man though, so that would be my choice…. :) See you soon. S. xxx

  7. 7 Matthew Bennett November 13, 2009 at 7:21 am

    for galactic, the stars through the black could be arranged & colored slightly to imply the milky way, then similarly as the black fades back to skin it could resemble the virgo supercluster, to give you another cosmic level

  8. 8 Colin Purrington January 9, 2012 at 1:12 am

    I’m rather fond of the evolution diagram, of course. What did you end up with?

    Darwin's tree of life

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Lex Pelger

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