Tag Archives: Body Piercing

uniquespc001 Rudy

uniquespc001

uniquespc001
Model: Rudy I.
Year: Early 1980s.
Tattoo Artist: Various (including Alan Mr. Sebastian Oversby)

I first met Rudy in the early/mid 1990s through the UNIQUE classified ads. A self described ‘tattoo and piercing enthusiast’, Rudy and I exchanged letters and photographs over the years, sharing stories of our own modifications and experiences. Our correspondence eventually fell off and, as is prone to happen, we lost touch with one another. I’m not sure what ever happened to him, though many of his letters are still in my collection.

Rudy is briefly mentioned in an article by Gauntlet’s Jim Ward: http://runningthegauntlet-book.com/BME/jimward/20050715.html

In 1996 Rudy sent me a photocopy of a profile on him from the NTA’s 1 magazine- what follows is a transcript. He did not provide a month/year/issue number.


My interest in tattoos became activated as a youngster in 1954 when I read a critique about Hanns Ebenstein’s book “Pierced Hearts and True Love” in a local newspaper in my native Switzerland. I wrote to Hanns, who in return put me in contact with one of the most famous British artists, Rich Mingins in London. 1955 I was sent to London for further education and then met Rich in person. The same year, probably the first national convention to place in a pub in London, organized by Rich Mingins, , Les Skuse from Bristol and Jessie Knight from Aldershot. This was also the start of my photo collection.

In 1957 I emigrated to the United States and got really involved in tattooing. My first tattoos were done by sailor Eddie Evans in Camden, New Jersey and Paul Rogers who then work with him. Work by Phil Sparrow (Chicago), (then Crazy) Philadelphia Eddie Funk, Huck Spaulding (Albany, N.Y.) and Buddy Mott (Rhode Island) followed.

I then realized that very many people are interested in tattooing, but had difficulties meeting others of the same interest. Therefore, in 1963 some friends and I in New York decided to do something about it. We found it the “Tattoo Club of America “, probably the first American Tattoo club. I collected news items related tattooing and in January 1964 published the first periodical dedicated tattoos, the “Tattoo News”. As a supplement the “History of Tattooing” was added from time to time. Tattoo tidbits and instructive news items, very much in the vein of the column now written by Lal Hardy for “Tattoo international”, where the main attraction of the publication.

On 5 October, 1964 I organized probably the first tattoo convention in the U.S.A. – and if you hadn’t already guessed it, Elizabeth Weinziril was, of course, there. That was the time when a few young artist such a sailor Jerry Collins of Honolulu started to change the style of American tattoos. The beginnings were small and the magazine only mimeographed, but it was a start. Unfortunately my job became more and more demanding so that the December 1966 issue of “Tattoo News” was the last to appear. I had nothing to do with the later magazine which took over my title.

In 1970 the cutback in the defense industry in the USA for which I worked as a physicist, forced me to look around and I went to Munich, Germany to work for a German firm. In 1973 this firm sent me to England, where George Bone and Alan Oversbyin London have mainly worked on me since. I have not missed a single convention of the TCCB be since its beginning and felt very honored when I was asked on several occasions to be on the jury of the beauty contests.

It is good to see that the Tattoo tradition continues, many more people get tattooed with better designs, more clubs are founded , more publications printed and more conventions held. It shall continue.

Notes:

  1. National Tattoo Association.

FEB79JIMA: Guiche Gauntlet (NSFW)

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Model: Jim A.
Piercer: Jim Ward.
Piercing: Guiche, Scrotum.
Year: February 1979.

A few weeks ago I went off on a (good natured) rant about the recent trend in the piercing community to have custom gold threaded jewelry made, often at considerable expense, in designs as varied as slices of pizza, Harry Potter iconography and Jersey shore tattoo classics like infinity symbols, feathers and Playboy bunnies.

Since there’s really nothing new under the sun, I instantly thought of early piercing personality Jim A. (who’s been featured on SD several times) and his amazing guiche weight that was made to resemble Gauntlet’s iconic logo. In the early days of western piercing the guiche weight was a fairly popular item, but as far as originality and style goes- no one really beat Jim.

Edit: Jim Ward shared this: “Thank you for the kind words. Jim Anderson was a great guy who died too early probably from AIDS. I personally sculpted that fist weight. It was cast in silver, not gold.”

Jim may be inclined to recast these weights if there’s an interest- and there should be!

 

Have History, Will Travel

11921686_10206980148369671_5434394000941234447_nIt must have been about 1991 when I first met Mike Natali; two decades later and we’ve taken to calling our first meeting ‘guiche day’ as both of us were at Jack Yount’s Zephyrhills Florida house to have ours pierced when were introduced and became fast friends, with Mike becoming an older brother/uncle figure to my brother and I. Under his leadership, Ed Fenster’s SILVER ANCHOR body jewelry company experienced massive growth and his own Bravo! Body Jewelry set a high bar for the companies that followed.

In late August I traveled down to Tampa to reconnect with Mike and to record an oral history with him about his introduction to Jack and Ed Fenster, his time at SA and Bravo and his career as a body piercer. The videos need to be edited and a transcript made, but it was really great to spend the afternoon with him and get his story told.

11908940_10206966581150499_3631926898293254402_oWhile in Florida I was also lucky enough to spend the afternoon with retired tattoo artist and legendary gay porn author JD, who proved to be a really nice gent who was full of stories which he was gracious enough to allow me to record. JD was a friend of Sailor Sid Diller and would often tattoo at Sid’s South Florida shop. I archived video a few months back and put a call out for SD/OV readers to help me identify the artist in the tape. Through my new friend Brian I found out that  the tattooer was none other than John Daigon, who was not only still around, but was willing to talk to us body modification nerds about the glory days. The audio on that recording is pretty beat due to some technical/location issues, but once I get Mike’s history transcribed I’ll put the footage into Final Cut and see if I can clean it up enough to make a transcript.

Late summer 2015 has been super busy for me and I’ve been ignoring Sacred and OV but as fall approaches I have some really amazing content for you folks. Thanks to everyone who’s supported the site and restorations over the last few months- you’re keeping the wheels moving and I appreciate it.

 

(photo of Mike and I ©2015 Jay Nolan)

 

BMExSPC007: Knuckle Piercing

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Piercer: Tom Brazda.
Studio: Stainless Studios, Toronto (since closed)
Client: Shannon Larratt.
Source: Hard copy photo submission to spcOnline.
Date: 1996/1997 (exact date unsure)

I had a Tumblr message asking for more posts from piercing’s “middle school” era, so I dug out one of the 1990s albums and found these shots, submitted to the spcO site back in the late 1990s by Shannon Larratt of BMEZINE.COM. I’m not sure I ever actually added them to the site back then.

During the mid/late 1990s piercers challenged the ‘if it protrudes, pierce it” ethic of the previous generation, trying out new piercings, new techniques, new jewelry and aftercare. Sometimes things worked out, sometimes they didn’t, but the experimentation was integral to the evolution of the modern piercing community.

 

FH-10A11 Starry-eyed

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Piercer: Jim Ward. 1
Location: Southern California.
Piercing: Nipple.
Year: Early 1980s.
Collection: Sid Diller

 

Notes:

  1. Check out Jim Ward’s memoir, Running the Gauntlet, to learn more about the roots of the western piercing subculture. http://www.runningthegauntlet-book.com/

SABJ001 From the Silver Anchor

SABJ001

SABJ001.
Location: Crystal Springs, Florida.
Year: Approximately 1988.
A selection of Silver Anchor Body Jewelry fresh from the buffing station.
Items include tapered insertion pins, captive ball rings, barbells, screw on ball rings, stainless steel shackles and guiche weights.

A5301012 13: Hans of Denmark (NSFW)

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On a visit to London Hans convinced Mr. Sebastian to do four piercings in one session. First, he got a quiche and ampallang. Then he got a Prince Albert. Because he had previously subincised his urethra he had the Prince Albert placed somewhat lower than the usual placement- one which began at the base of the glans and came out lower down the urethra. Finally, in the same session, he got what was the usual upper half of the apadravya. Since it lies just above the spot where the Prince Albert normally lies,  Hans called this piercing his “Queen Victoria.”

Hans has a wonderful sense of humor but had a little that day as he left Mr. Sebastian’s shop and boarded the London bus to return was lodgings. “I had to have a smoke, so I carefully climbed to the upper deck of the bus. I had to. I needed to spread my legs all the way home. Once I got home, I took a nice, long bath. That helped and the healing progressed reasonably fast. But that was the LAST time I ever got so many piercings at once.”


Hans especially likes his “Queen Victoria.” As the photos show, he has increased the piercings substantially. Last New Year’s Eve, he cut a slit from the original piercing so it’s now able to take a 3/4” (outside diameter) tube through the piercing.  – A. Viking Navaro, PFIQ #19

A5301012 13
Model: Hans of Denmark.
Year: 1980s
Piercing: “Queen Victoria”