The ink on Carrie Jo

Carrie Jo from Washington DC

Where did you grow up?
Falls Church, VA.

How was it growing up there, would you say that it influenced you?
I would say that it influenced me by being a safe place where I got a good education. DC and Richmond, VA really had the heaviest influence on me.

When did you start getting tattoos?
When I could afford them, so my senior year of college.

How would you describe your style?
It depends on the situation. I own a business full time, so I wear men’s suits every day. You could describe that as sartorial androgyny. If I’m not at work, it’s usually black, studs, mesh, lace, fishnets, leather, etc. with heavy makeup. So… 80’s punk. I like to do the 60’s mod and rude girl thing every now and then too.

Do you consider tattoos as a serious art form?
Absolutely, and anyone who says otherwise is an idiot.

How do you see the tattoo culture right now?
I have mixed feelings about current tattoo culture. It’s nice that they are becoming more popular, because it forces the community at large to recognize ones ownership over ones own body.

What has been your inspiration for getting them?
The only people I used to see with tattoos growing up were old bikers. I’ll have that image in my head forever, seeing my first tattoo as a kid. Back then; it represented itself as a mark, indicating that this person should be feared and respected. I guess deep down I wanted to be feared and respected.

What’s your favorite piece?
The harpy on my right thigh. I need to get it colored in, but it’s beautiful.

Do you catch people starring at you because of your ink?
Yes, very often because I love and work in an upscale part of DC. People in my neighborhood can either be very judgmental or very fascinated.

In your opinion, do your tattoos change your mood often?
No. Are you asking if I get different types of tattoos based on my mood? I don’t, I’m very picky and careful about my tattoos and I plan them out carefully.

What’s your most significant tattoo and why?
I have tattoos on my breasts to cover breast reduction scars. I was a 32H at one time, it was very painful to live with and I couldn't dress myself nicely, let alone find clothes or bras that fit. Since I got the reduction I have never been happier, and the tattoos over the scars just completed the whole experience for me.

What advice would you give to someone wanting to get their first tattoo?
It’s going to hurt, don’t be a pussy.

Will you be getting anymore?
Yes, I plan to cover most of my body eventually. My face and hands are off limits because of my business, but that’s about it.

What’s your biggest inspiration, what keeps you going?
My biggest inspirations are my friends and family. They are constantly encouraging me and supporting everything I do. I wouldn't be anywhere without them.

What is one thing that life has taught you?
That you have to have a thick skin.

Do you have a favorite quote?
“She wins who calls herself beautiful and challenges the world to change to truly see her.”- Naomi Wolf

Anything else you would like to add?

Photographers Credit:
Boss Lady Photography - 1,2,3.
Joe Carabeo - 4,5.
Mehli Photography - 6.
Polished Photography - 7.
Hien Trang - 8.
Maze Studio - 9