By Licely Carcamo (She/Her/Hers)
I’ve recently gotten into stick and pokes after dabbling with a few professional tattoos. My first tattoo is extremely personal and representative of my heritage. Unfortunately, I had a negative experience with the artist tattooing me because they made objectifying comments about my body and my sexuality. This narrative is not uncommon among feminized people who have been tattooed. Even in the attempt to reclaim control over your body through tattoo art, feminized people are still vulnerable to micro- aggressions and objecti cation. My solution? Stick and pokes.
I’m not saying that stick and poke tattoos are for everyone or that all tattoo artists are bad; this is simply my way of reclaiming autonomy over my body. I’m able to choose what I want on my canvas and whether or not I need a break from the pain of the needle. Overall, I can ensure that I’m comfortable in whatever space I’m in. Stick and poke tattoos are my resistance to the colonization of my body. For once, I am in control.
*Note: Stick and poke tattoos may have health consequences -- please do research on infection prevention before tattooing!