For These With Darker Skin, Obtaining The Right Tattoo Artist Can Be A Struggle

Diverse skin tones call for distinct tattooing approaches. That can make items tough on tattoo artists and their customers alike.


Tattoos have long ceased to be the mark of a rebel. Nearly half of all millennials have a tattoo, according to a 2016 Harris poll. And even although tattoos have turn into a lot more widespread, several with darker skin struggle to uncover tattoo artists who know how to function on their skin varieties. As NPR’s Parth Shah reports, diverse skin tones call for a different tattooing strategy.

PARTH SHAH, BYLINE: Receiving a tattoo can be nerve wracking. But Osuna Afrik (ph) is no newbie.

OSHUN AFRIK: This is my 35th tattoo.

SHAH: Afrik lounges on the sofa at Pinz and Needlez Tattoo shop in Washington, D.C. While she sips her morning coffee, shop owner Christopher Mensah is busy sketching out Afrik’s 35th tattoo. Afrik has dark brown skin. For the tattoo to show up on her, Mensah says the design requirements to be huge and bold.

CHRISTOPHER MENSAH: Let’s say if somebody came in and got – and they wanted to get a tattoo of a heart with, you know, an initial in it the size of a dime, anything that is a dime size that you may possibly do on white skin you could have to do a quarter or half-a-dollar size on dark skin.

SHAH: Mensah says he’s heard a lot of myths about functioning on dark skin. Some clientele think there’s a special type of ink for dark skin – there isn’t. And it’s not just consumers with misconceptions. He says it really is other artists, as well.

MENSAH: The occasions that I was functioning in white tattoo shops, what I would hear a lot was dark skin is a lot more tough to tattoo. Nevertheless, from my experience, I just think it is softer.

SHAH: What do you imply by that.

MENSAH: When I say it is softer, we tend to keloid a lot more and scar.

SHAH: A keloid is a raised scar, and people with African ancestry are a lot much more likely to get keloids in response to a tattoo.

AFRIK: My keloids are really little, though, compared to some other men and women I’ve observed.

SHAH: Afrik says when she’s looking for a tattoo artist, she studies their portfolio and pays attention to who they’ve tattooed.

AFRIK: If you see only light-skinned individuals or – or white skin, I never want to – simply because I don’t know how they’re going to operate with my skin, so – I am a little darker.

TYLER BREWER: Tattooing dark skin opposed to light skin or any distinction in skin kind is a distinct world.

SHAH: That’s Tyler Brewer, who functions at Kensington Tattoo in Maryland. Brewer is white and says artists should find out how to tattoo all skin sorts. But he says he’s met folks who feel otherwise.

BREWER: I have seen artists fairly a lot give the blow-off to consumers since they had been different, different becoming a distinct color. I believe individuals rationalize their racism in tattooing and their lack of capacity.

SHAH: Back at Pinz and Needlez, artist Christopher Mensah is eagle-eyed and focused on Oshun Afrik’s left forearm. Mensah says the lack of info offered for dark-skinned people looking for tattoos is linked to the lack of people of colour working in the enterprise. He says there wasn’t a community for him when he started tattooing 20 years ago.

MENSAH: At the time, there weren’t many – well, I did not see any black tattoo artists.

SHAH: Afrik says the neighborhood is increasing. Most of her tattoos have been carried out by folks of color. Right after sitting for an hour in the hot seat with Mensah, tattoo number 35 is finished. It is a Sankofa bird, an Adinkra symbol that translates to go back and get it.

AFRIK: I am so excited to show it off, I’m not putting my jacket on. I am going to go – I am going to walk around the city with a tank top in November. I am (laughter).

SHAH: Not so quick, even though. Prior to she leaves the shop, Mensah bandages her forearm so it doesn’t get infected. She’ll have to wait a couple of hours prior to she can show off her new tattoo. Parth Shaw, NPR News.

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Arts &amp Life : NPR

&#039People Want These Stories&#039: Females Win Massive At The Nebula Awards

Nebula promo image

Korionov Igor/

The wave of conversation about diversity and representation in fiction is about to crest again: Ladies swept this year’s Nebula Awards, handed out this past weekend in Chicago.

All of the fiction awards — for short story, novelette, novella, novel, and the Andre Norton Award for Young Adult novels — went to girls authors, and Mad Max: Fury Road (a film NPR’s Chris Kilmek known as a “boldly feminist chase flick”) won the Ray Bradbury Award for dramatic presentation. (The Solstice Award — offered occasionally at the discretion of the SFWA board to people who’ve created a massive influence in the field — did go to a man, the late Terry Pratchett.) In some ways the winners, and the full nominating ballot they have been selected from, represent a regional, genre-particular eddy of adjust in the bigger ocean of literature.

“I think it is a solution of our time that excellent stories, diverse stories, are appearing and being celebrated,” says Sarah Pinsker, whose story “Our Lady of the Open Road” won greatest novelette.

2015 Nebula Award Winners

Ideal Novel: Uprooted by Naomi Novik

Ideal Novella: Binti by Nnedi Okorafor

Ideal Novelette: “Our Lady of the Open Road” by Sarah Pinsker

Ideal Quick Story: “Hungry Daughters of Starving Mothers” by Alyssa Wong

Andre Norton Award for Ideal Young Adult Science Fiction and Fantasy: Updraft by Fran Wilde

Ray Bradbury Award for Outstanding Dramatic Presentation: Mad Max: Fury Road Written by George Miller, Brendan McCarthy, Nick Lathouris

Solstice Award: Terry Pratchett

The Nebulas are nominated by and voted on by the members of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America (SFWA), an organization created up of functioning writers, editors, and other publishing professionals. They’re offered out in the course of the group’s annual conference, which is committed to celebrating, educating, and supporting genre writers.

This year’s celebration began with the presentation of the SFWA Grand Master award to C. J. Cherryh, honoring her lifetime contributions to the science fiction and fantasy field. Then, in category following category, authors like Alyssa Wong, Nnedi Okorafor, and Naomi Novik took home glittering nebulae and planet replicas encased in clear Lucite.

To some observers, this may possibly signal a dramatic shift in the science fiction and fantasy genres, which are typically perceived as getting a (white) boys’ club that is only lately begun to diversify. But that’s not the whole image, as the Nebulas themselves prove. This is not the initial time females have swept the awards you have to go back to the late 1960s and early 1970s, the really beginning of the Nebulas, to discover a group of years dominated by guys — and even then the list of nominees incorporated girls and 1 of the males consistently winning was African-American author Samuel R Delany.

This weekend’s winners reflect a lot of various kinds of diversity beyond gender. Half are women of colour, half are self-identified queer females – which mirrors the overall diversity of the ballot. 24 out of the 34 works nominated for the award had been written by girls from numerous racial and cultural backgrounds and a spectrum of sexual orientations. Of the ten operates by guys, five of them were written by folks of colour and queer authors.

“The Nebula ballot is every thing a ballot need to be in this community,” mentioned Brooke Bolander, author of the nominated story “And You Shall Know Her by the Trail of Dead.” “It is diverse, it’s wide-ranging, and it contains remarkable stories by incredible authors.”

That’s an crucial point, provided the ongoing conversation about diversity taking place now in speculative fiction circles. The Hugos — the other key awards in the genre — are nominated by fans. Final year and once again this year, Hugo nominations have been affected by the Sad and Rabid Puppies groups, who campaign against what they see as affirmative action-primarily based nominating and voting in the Hugo and Nebula awards.

But “individuals want these stories,” says Alyssa Wong. She was the 1st Filipino author to be nominated for the Nebula award final year and is now the very first to win it for her 2015 short story “Hungry Daughters of Starving Mothers.” Even though she says she’s seen some Puppy-style criticism of her success, most of the reaction has been positive.

Readers “want to study stories from the points of view of folks who have been historically been locked out of the genre,” Wong says. “‘Hungry Daughters’ is about a group of ladies who are all Asian-American and all from very different backgrounds, all of whom really feel isolated in some way … But clearly this is not just Asian-American audiences who this is resonating with. I’m appreciative that individuals are reading much more extensively now. It implies much more opportunities — not just to be published, but to be seen.”

Tempest Bradford is a speculative fiction author, media critic, podcaster, vlogger, and issuer of the Tempest Challenge.

Arts &amp Life : NPR

Watch Justin Bieber Casually Infiltrate These Lyft Passengers’ Rides

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Justin Bieber could have gifted us two new tracks from his upcoming album on Monday (Nov. 9), but he’s now taking his Goal promo to the streets — literally. For JB fans who want to dive into the entire LP prior to its official release on Friday, there’s now a simple, functional answer: order a Lyft and slide into Bieber Mode.

The ride share firm has partnered with JB to market Goal, supplying it at a steep discount to riders who unlock “Bieber Mode” in its app. The promotion begins at 9 p.m. PST on Nov. 9 and lasts till 11:59 PST on Nov. 19. In the course of that time, passengers who spend at least 5 dollars on a ride although in Bieber Mode will be capable to download Purpose for one more 5 dollars (which is a steal, contemplating the album’s $ 12.99 on iTunes). Bieber Mode riders will also receive a five dollar credit for a future, probably significantly less Bieber-centric Lyft ride.

For fans who want a tiny a lot more bang for their buck, although, JB’s taking it one particular step further: he’s decided to surprise some Lyft passengers around the nation by casually hijacking their rides and beginning in-car dance parties with them. Yep, for genuine.

To sneak a peek at what specifically that entails, check out this promotional video, in the course of which he jams out to “Sorry” and provides unsuspecting passengers a Lyft of a lifetime.

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Yep, cannot think of anyone who WOULDN’T want this dude riding shotgun with them.


Meals Podcasts 1.: These Radio Pioneers Had It Down 90 Years Ago

Evelyn Birkby interviews guests on her KMA radio program, Down a Country Lane, in 1951 in Shenandoah, Iowa.

Evelyn Birkby interviews guests on her KMA radio system, Down a Nation Lane, in 1951 in Shenandoah, Iowa. Courtesy of University of Iowa Women’s Archives/Evelyn Birkby Collection hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of University of Iowa Women’s Archives/Evelyn Birkby Collection

Long ahead of the homemade vibes of meals podcasts, there were folksy radio homemakers. These early 20th-century women presented recipes, life hacks and insights for the contemporary farmer’s wife. And just like podcasts nowadays, their shows have been frequently individual, off-the-cuff and straight from the kitchen table.

“We have been just women who shared our lives,” says Evelyn Birkby. “We shared what we have been doing with our families, what we have been cooking, what we were eating.” Birkby began hosting Down a Nation Lane out of Shenandoah, Iowa, 65 years ago on KMA radio.

The station was the brainchild of Earl May possibly, owner of the May possibly Seed and Nursery Company. In 1925, the early days of radio, May possibly saw the new medium as way to build an audience for his items. He asked listeners to create in with their addresses for a free flower bulb — and rapidly expanded his catalogue mailing list. By continuing to develop new, woman-centered content each and every day, his nursery was ever present in the ears of individuals who produced the household buying choices.

KMA broadcasts, and other people like them, gave farm wives info they could use each day, whilst connecting listeners across the isolation of the Midwestern prairie. The familiar voices who hosted these shows became an intimate presence in fans’ properties — in component, since some ladies broadcast proper out of their properties. Birkby, who still broadcasts as soon as a month, collected the stories of some of these pioneering female broadcasters in her book Neighboring on the Air: Cooking With the KMA Radio Homemakers.

Florence Falk and a rooster are pictured in the 1950s at a table in the dining room where broadcasts of The Farmer's Wife originated.

Florence Falk and a rooster are pictured in the 1950s at a table in the dining area where broadcasts of The Farmer’s Wife originated. Courtesy of University of Iowa Women’s Archives/Evelyn Birkby Collection hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of University of Iowa Women’s Archives/Evelyn Birkby Collection

Florence Falk, who hosted The Farmer’s Wife, gave her audience a taste of farm life by narrating the scenes she spotted via her dining space window and sharing dishes inspired by her Swedish heritage. Adella Shoemaker drew listeners in for a “pay a visit to” to her sunroom, reveling in the freedom that the new medium of radio gave her. Birkby says that Shoemaker loved the notion that she could move from kitchen to microphone, appearing just before her fans even in an apron splattered with the day’s canning. And soon after a car accident place Leanna Driftmier in a wheelchair, she hosted her well-known Kitchen-Klatter from the mini-studio that KMA set up in her home. There, she dished up recipes for Midwestern staples like meatloaf and angel food cake.

“It was just like they have been sitting there with you,” says Birkby. They were, she jokes, some thing of an early assistance group — particularly for farm wives.

“For a lot of rural women, their nearest neighbor may well be a number of miles away,” explains Erika Janik,a scholar of women’s and Wisconsin history and executive producer of the Wisconsin Public Radio show Wisconsin Life. She says these actual-life radio shows helped listeners and hosts make “pals on the air.”

Wisconsin Public Radio, one of the oldest stations in the nation, first received its WHA call letters in 1922. And in 1929, the station began broadcasting The Homemakers Plan, which aired for 38 years. The hosts — from the university’s home economics department or extension services — created shows for a captive audience “who were residence carrying out the cooking and cleaning in the course of the day and listening to the radio,” explains Janik.

But the show had a bigger aim — “to elevate rural ladies by way of education on technologies and domestic science,” Janik says. The notion was to place farm wives in touch with the newest tactics and trends (feel convenience foods) that urban women currently enjoyed.

“They did roundtable discussions about recipes and meals,” says Janik. Or listeners could write in and ask for advice about a cooking failure, “and the home economists would attempt to tackle it.” A lot like America’s Test Kitchen today, she adds.

In 1933, when Aline Hazard started to host the plan, she occasionally took the private touch on the road, broadcasting from listeners’ personal kitchens and gardens. Hazard, who was necessary to upgrade her degree in English and speech with 1 in home economics in order to host the show, learned alongside her listeners. That gave her shows a sense that “you are on this journey collectively,” Janik says.

At a time when commercial stations permitted “10, 15, maybe 20 minutes” for meals applications, the early public radio shows ran an hour or two a day, explains Janik, providing listeners far more speak to time with the ladies whose lives they felt they shared. She says hosts like Hazard received thousands of letters from listeners who “regarded as her a good buddy.”

Birkby and a guest, Vicar Henry Robbins, a local pastor, 1950. &quotWe were just women who shared our lives,&quot Birkby says of herself and her fellow radio homemakers. &quotWe shared what we were doing with our families, what we were cooking, what we were eating.&quot

Birkby and a guest, Vicar Henry Robbins, a local pastor, 1950. “We had been just females who shared our lives,” Birkby says of herself and her fellow radio homemakers. “We shared what we have been performing with our families, what we had been cooking, what we have been consuming.” Courtesy of University of Iowa Women’s Archives/Evelyn Birkby Collection hide caption

itoggle caption Courtesy of University of Iowa Women’s Archives/Evelyn Birkby Collection

Examine this intimacy and neighborliness to programs like Aunt Sammy — a radio character created by the Department of Agriculture in the 1920s. In 1925, the USDA launched a radio plan to provide tips to farmers. The following year, “Aunt Sammy” was conceived as the female counterpart, who would speak to the concerns of the farmers’ wives. A single script was drafted in Washington, D.C., and sent to radio stations across the country, exactly where it would be read by a lady in the regional dialect. There was no space for deviation or personalization. It was a far cry from these hosts who “literally shared their lives,” says Birkby.

For some fans, listening in was like catching up with a excellent pal over the phone — sometimes literally. In the days of celebration lines, explains Birkby, 1 farm wife with a crystal set could ring fellow listeners on the exact same phone line. When the program began, “you would lift your receiver and ring the celebration line,” she says. As quickly as your buddies heard the bell, “everyone would lift up their receivers, and 13 or 14 individuals listened to the identical radio.”

Today, we’ve replaced the phone with earbuds. With their occasionally informal presentation and direct connection to the host, Janik says, “I see podcasts drawing a direct line back to these homemaking applications.”

Birkby says she and others designed an intimate environment “exactly where you could not wait until the subsequent day to listen once again.”

It was significantly less like a broadcast from far away, and much more like an afternoon break for a very good conversation about food and drink. Birkby recalls: “I would say to the listeners, ‘Pull up a chair, I’ll pour you a cup of coffee, and let’s check out.’ “

Anne Bramley is the author of Eat Feed Autumn Winter and the host of the Eat Feed podcast. Twitter: @annebramley

Arts &amp Life : NPR

These 13 NSFW Makeup Creations Will Make You Shed Your Appetite

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With Halloween just about the corner, amazing makeup creations are popping up on-line. Nevertheless, 1 artist’s function stands out for several obviously causes, the principal 1 becoming it appears straight outta Hollywood.

On his Instagram, Marc Clancy says he’s a “self taught special effects make up artist from Melbourne, Australia.” As soon as you see his operate, even though, you will be blown away that it was carried out by someone who didn’t have any formal SFX instruction.

Seriously, I had to do a double-take following initial seeing these photos since the wounds looked SO Actual. Like, genuinely, genuinely real. With that getting mentioned, while these photos are not actual injuries, they’re still not for the faint of heart. So, if you are easily squeamish, I suggest you exit out proper now and read one more Halloween write-up as an alternative. Probably this one particular about cute dog costumes?

  • Fingers cramping up?

  • How about a sore thumb?

  • Does it feel like something’s in your eye?

  • Do you get the strange feeling something’s not very right with your finger?

  • But, you just can’t place your, ahem, finger on it?

  • In reality, your whole hand isn’t feeling up to par.

  • Neither is your wrist.

  • And do not even get you started on your eye.

  • Hell, perhaps you *should* see a doctor quickly.

  • Your friends are starting to get actually concerned about you.

  • And your mom would faint the moment she saw your situation.

  • If the government found out about your condition, they’d quarantine you so fast, your head would spin.

  • So, don’t lose an eye. Get yourself to the hospital STAT.

To see much more of Clancy’s function (including even gorier photos), you can verify out his Instagram and YouTube pages.

H/T Imgur

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&#13 I’m still upset I wasn’t a contestant on Figure It Out in the ’90s.

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