My “Potter” Tattoo – Part 1
There is nothing quite as intimate as tattooing yourself with an illustration, image, quote, or design in tribute of your favorite piece of literature or film. Harry Potter tattoos range from the microscopic to expansive, from the expected to the completely abstract. MuggleNet has highlighted amazing Potter tattoos on the site before, which you can see here, here, and here. However, I’ve always been excited about tattoos – getting them, talking about them, sharing them, etc, so after I finally got my Potter-themed tattoo, I eagerly sought out similarly tatted-up fans to talk with.
I was able to speak with 18 amazing people. To do all of them justice, I have split up their submissions into three separate posts. Keep your eye out for the rest of the series! (Because what’s a Potter party without effusive, long-winded enthusiasm?)
Jasmine Lee, 26 years old, freelance writer and MN Creative Team staff member
- This is my fifth tattoo. My other ones are the phrase “think, think, think” on my left forearm, Winnie-the-Pooh looking at a butterfly on the inside of my left wrist, a semicolon right above the back of my right elbow, and an outline of coffee cup on the inside of my right wrist.
- My current HP one is incomplete; I’m planning on getting Ron’s Jack Russell terrier Patronus or the “Weasley is our king” crown added to the mix. My tattoo is Hermione’s otter Patronus, swimming above a teaspoon. I didn’t want to get a Potter tattoo that everyone’s already gotten, so I knew I wanted to nix the Deathly Hallows sign or Harry’s glasses. I love everything and everyone in the series, but my all-time favorite relationship from it is Ron/Hermione. The back-and-forth between them, the support they give each other and Harry, and the way they both grow up their relationship with each other – UGH, I LOVE IT. The teaspoon refers to Hermione’s rolling-eyed declaration that Ron’s emotional range is that of a teaspoon, said during a time of heightened emotional and hormonal tension. And I’m all about that (mutual) pining.
Melissa Pooley, 37 years old, Facilities Manager
- My first is a leg tattoo of three fairies. The second is a back tattoo. I have my family’s karate crest in the middle surrounded by a swimming koi fish & flowers. My 3rd and love is my Hedwig & [T]ime[-T]urner! Since the passing of Alan Rickman, I feel like something is just a little incomplete.
- Going back to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter a month ago was an amazing experience. I met more people this time around; I guess the common interest and the large owl on your arm makes people comfortable and more likely to chat – with a lot of kids, but the parents got a kick out of my tattoo, too.
- It took me a long time to come up with what I really wanted in a tattoo; I knew it had to be Harry Potter. My favorite book is Order of the Phoenix, BUT my favorite movie is […] Prisoner of Azkaban, so the [T]ime[-T]urner was always a must. I went to Jessica with the pieces I wanted: the [T]ime[-T]urner and Hedwig. I wasn’t sure if I wanted him flying, sitting, cartoonish, or realistic. Once Jessica sent back the drawing I was sold. I was so excited and so relieved. I have spent the past ten-plus years with the HP series. It’s been a big part of my life one way or another. It’s always been my escape, and continues to be.
Justine Lee, 26 years old, registered nurse
- My Potter tattoo was not my first one; I had a quote from Titanic tattooed onto the inside of my bicep. I just got my fourth tattoo, and I might hold off on another one. I would love to get anything Potter-related and am always looking for something slightly different than what everyone else has. My [G]olden [S]nitch looks a little more hand-drawn, which I love. I love how everyone gets the Deathly Hallows, an awesome quote, or Harry’s glasses but am also hesitant since I know I just want one because everyone else has it. Plus, I work in a hospital, and there are only a few places I can get tattoo placements without fear of getting an infection.
- I think my tattoo has had a lot more people become vocal about their HP love. Last night at work, a coworker stopped me and asked if my tattoo was a [S]nitch, and we high-fived our mutual obsession. I also had gotten this tattoo like a week before my second HP barcrawl, and it was an awesome icebreaker for fellow HP fans!
- I got the [G]olden [S]nitch placed on the inner wrist of my right hand. I really wanted something that not a lot of people had seen. I think the [S]nitch is such a good representation of the whole series and also doesn’t make me have to favor one certain character. I was so impressed in the books how JK Rowling tied the first and last book together with the [S]nitch; it was such a minor detail in the first book and ended up being the key to Voldemort’s defeat in the great battle! How amazing is that?! Also, I love how the [S]nitch brought Oliver Wood into Harry’s life and how Harry idly plays with the [S]nitch in his downtime.
Eric Scull, 27 years old, MN Senior Content Editor
- This is my first tattoo. It is located on my upper arm and is easily concealed by a short sleeve [T-]shirt, yet it is of a large enough size that it was worth getting and sticks out when I want it to. I would probably not get another Harry Potter tattoo – because this one says all that I want it to say already. It’s my own personal connection to the series represented.
- This tattoo was a big thing for me. The design has been used as a logo for MuggleCast, the first Harry Potter podcast, which I joined as host on episode 3 back in August of 2005. From 2005[ to ]2010 (when I got the tattoo), my contributions to the podcast enabled me to travel to faraway places and essentially, see the world. We held live podcast events in cities such as New York, London (for the release of the seventh book), and even two events in Melbourne and Sydney, Australia. On a more personal level, appearing on MuggleCast repeatedly helped me to improve my critical thinking, and speaking, skills. Engaging in discussion with peers in such a public format, I had found something that I was passionate about, and it really shaped who I am today.
- I had the tattoo done in Portland, Oregon, in a shop that is now closed. Portland is apparently the place to get ink done [since] their health code restrictions are much better than in other places in the U.S. I had been thinking about having a tattoo at some point and basically just walked into the shop to browse around. My tattoo artist, Jesse Olmsted, warned me that I should choose a design that was meaningful to me [since] I would be keeping the tattoo forever! So I chose Harry Potter and specifically, the logo of a Harry Potter podcast, which changed my life and continues to do so. I shocked/impressed my fellow co-hosts… and I have been slowly pressuring them to get the same thing as well! But I don’t think it’s likely. The tattoo represents my pride of what was accomplished by a group of passionate teenagers.
Paige Brittain, 21 years old, works in marketing
- My tattoo is a version of Dobby from the new Bloomsbury cover of CoS. The art work [sic] on the cover is by Jonny Duddle. Dobby[ is] also wearing a Slytherin scarf and hat. I’ve wanted a Slytherin tattoo for a long time but couldn’t decide what. When I got the book with the new cover I fell in love with the image of Dobby. I was talking to my sister about how I could tie [in] my Slytherin roots, and we came up with the hat and scarf idea. I much prefer book-Dobby to film-Dobby, so it makes sense to me to have the book illustration rather than the film version.
- It’s actually only recently that I read the books. My sister has always been a huge HP fan, so it’s been in my life a long time, and I’d say the films were always a big part of my life. I’ve always classed myself as a huge fan but felt like a bit of a fraud because I hadn’t read the books. I had quite a toxic friendship all through school with someone who kind of made me believe that reading was really uncool, so I guess I always thought I hated reading. Last year I discovered that reading is actually my favorite pass time [sic], and I’d just never found the right genre for me, so I finally picked up the HP books. I felt like I was experiencing HP all over again, and it was amazing. I guess this probably pushed me to finally get a [sic] HP tattoo, and that’s also why I went for something from the book rather than the film.
Laura Kata Szegi, 22 years old, psychology student
- I’m a Slytherin. This is my 3rd tattoo. I’ve had it for about 3½ days. I’m not planning to get another HP tattoo any time soon. Right now it represents my love of the books and the story, and it’s enough, but anything can happen in the future. In Hungary, tattoos are still not considered acceptable, so a lot of my friends had problems with it being in a visible spot (despite that I can hide it any time). Also, I’ve been asked if my tattoo is of the eye of Sauron, and one guy told me it’s “Illuminati confirmed.”
- This is a basic Deathly Hallows tattoo with watercolor splash, in the colors of the four [H]ouses [at] Hogwarts. It is simple but meaningful. I’ve been a massive HP fan since I first got my Philosopher’s Stone copy at the age of 8. I basically grew up with them, and I remember sitting in a swimming pool during a swimming competition, waiting for my turn, with Deathly Hallows and a dictionary in my hands (I couldn’t wait for the Hungarian translation to come out). I chose this symbol because it represents being alive, but being mortal, having a choice over your life. With that, it just reminds me of the whole HP experience. When I first got this tattoo and my non-HP-fan friend asked me what it was, I told her “the [D]eathly [H]allows.” She asked why I wanted a tattoo about death, so I explained [to] her that it is the exact opposite: when you have all three objects (like Harry did in the forest, and [I] do now), you can choose life and choose going for what you think is right. That’s what I’m trying to do.