In this blog post, the Golden Age of Disney refers specifically to Disney’s animated films and does not include live action.
The Golden Age of Disney spans from 1937-1942 and includes Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Pinocchio, Fantasia, Dumbo, and Bambi.
Despite the name “Golden Age” this was actually a quite unsuccessful chapter in terms of financial gain, other than Snow White and Dumbo. In fact, Dumbo was originally supposed to be a short film but was made longer to make up for the financial losses suffered by Fantasia.
The films created in this time were all overseen by Walt himself, and helped cement Disney as a leader in animation.
While Disney films are generally regarded as mainly happy and upbeat, these films all tell quite dark stories and actually contain some quite frightening scenes, especially for the young audiences they were aimed at. I know scenes in Snow White and Pinocchio certainly scared me as a child.
As tattoos, Disney animation are almost entirely done in new school style, with some realism and more experimental styles also making the cut.
I found no shortage of tattoos from this era of Disney, other than Fantasia, of which I only found tattoos from the newer 2000’s version which will be seen in a later post.
Peaky Blinders is the incredibly popular British tv show following a gang called “The Peaky Blinders” in mainly Birmingham, immediately following the First World War.
Every episode is written by Steven Knight, and is loosely based on both historical gangs in England, and a story the writers father used to tell him about his grandfather having him deliver notes to his uncles, the Sheldons, who became the shows “Shelbys.”
The history of the “real” peaky blinders differs from place to place, with some sources saying they died out by the 1890s. While they weren’t the ruling gang in Birmingham by the end of World War I, it looks like they probably still existed, even though the bigger “Birmingham Boys” became the top dogs by 1910. Peaky Blinders also eventually became a term to describe all gangs coming out of the Birmingham area. In both the show and real life, the gang is made up of mainly young unemployed men, looking to gain power and money through robbery, violence, and controlling both legal and illegal gambling. In the show many of the men also fought in World War I.
The name Peaky Blinders comes from the clothes worn by both the real and fictional gangsters. Their signature style includes tailored jackets, overcoats, waistcoats, silk scarves, bell-bottom trousers, and “peaked” caps. In the show, the gang is famous for sewing razorblades into their caps as their signature weapon, but realistically these blades wouldn’t have been affordable at the time and weren’t used until around 1890, when the Peaky Blinders started to lose power.
Many people are drawn to the show for its style, and that translates into the tattoos we see being made. Most Peaky Blinders tattoos are done in a classic traditional style, keeping it bold and classy, just like the show. Other styles include neo traditional, black work, and realism. Most of the tattoos I found are of Tommy, but the other Shelby brothers also make fine pieces.
Most people are horrified by the thought of serial killers. There have been some truly terrifying and disgusting people; people who have done awful things. So it’s normal to be repulsed by them. But some people are drawn to this darker side of humanity. Many people want to know why and how someone could take another’s life. Some also try to relate to killers and humanize them. Making them pseudo-celebrities.
Here are some of the most notorious and well-known serial killers; immortalized in skin.
H.H Holmes is one of America’s most well-known serial killers. Holmes was convicted of 9 murders, confessed to 27, but is thought to have killed up to 200. He is known for building a “murder hotel”. In 1887 he constructed a hotel full of passages, dead ends, and trap doors. People would check in, get lost and wander the hotel sometimes for days at a time before he would finally kill them. In May 1896 Holmes was hanged for his crimes.
Richard Ramírez, also known as the “Night Stalker” brutally attacked and killed people in Los Angeles from 1984-1985. He was a known Satan worshipper, known for drawing pentagrams in blood in the homes of his victims. Ramírez was charged with 14 counts of burglary, 11 sexual assaults, 5 attempted murders, and 13 murders. His youngest victim was a 9 year old girl, and his oldest were a couple in their 60’s. He was sentenced to death and was on death row for 23 years before he died due to complications from lymphoma in 2013.
Jeffrey Dahmer, known as the Milwaukee Cannibal, was an American serial killer and sex offender who raped, murdered, dismembered, and ate parts of 17 men and boys between 1978 and 1991. Along with cooking and eating parts of his victims, he also committed necrophilia on a number of the bodies. Dahmer was finally caught and convicted after a would be victim was able to over power him and call the police. In 1992 he was convicted of murder and given 15 life sentences. He died two years into his sentence when he was beaten to death by a fellow inmate.
Ted Bundy was an American serial killer and rapist who terrorized women and young girls during the 1970’s. Bundy was described as charming and handsome. He would lure his victims into secluded areas and then overpower them where he would sexually assault them and finally murder them. He decapitated at least 12 of his victims and kept the heads in jars in his apartment as trophies. Bundy was actually caught twice, escaping police and a court house, committing three more murders before finally being caught for good. He admitted to killing 36 people but it is believed he killed up to and possibly more than 100 people. He was put to death in 1989, by electric chair in Florida.
John Wayne Gacy, also known as “Pogo the Clown”, and, “The Killer Clown”, was an American serial killer from Chicago. He sexually assaulted and murdered 33 teenagers and young men 1972 and 1978. He was a trusted member of his community and was even involved in local politics. Gacy was also a party clown and would perform for children. He would lure his victims to his home with the promise of work before strangling them, then burying their bodies in his crawlspace. Gacy was convicted of 33 murders and was given the death sentence. He died by lethal injection in 1994 after spending 14 years on death row.
Edward (Ed) Gein, also known as “The Butcher of Plainfield”, was an American murder known for exhuming corpses from the local graveyard and creating decorations for his home from their bodies. He did also murder two women, but he is not actually a serial killer; though most people include him in their list due to his macabre hobby of crafting decorations made from corpses. Ed Gein also inspired Rob Zombie’s House of 1000 Corpses and Tone Hooper’s Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Gein lost all of his family members, but it was when his mother died that he truly seemed to “lose it”. He boarded up rooms used by her to keep them in pristine condition, but quickly let the rest of the house fall into disrepair, and started filling it with macabre creations such as lamps made from bones, with lampshades made of human skin. Upon further inspection done by police, Gein had also covered chairs in human skin, put skulls on his bedposts, made bowls from skulls, masks made from female faces, and Mary Hogan’s face in a bag, and her skull in a box. Mary was one of Gein’s two victims. Other more gruesome items were also found in his home. He killed Mary Hogan in 1954, and Bernice Worden in 1957. He was found unfit to stand trial and put in a psychiatric hospital where he remained until he died at age 77 in 1984 from cancer of the liver.
Charles Manson is one of the most famous people on this list. He was a cult leader in California. Manson spent half of his life in correctional facilities for various crimes before trying to make it as a musician in California. He worked briefly with the drummer from The Beach Boys and recorded a few short albums of his own. Manson believed in “Helter Skelter”, a term he stole form The Beatles song. He used it to describe an impending race war he thought would happen. To start this war he convinced a number of young people to murder 7 people for him. These were people who followed his cult. Manson was charged with the murder of 2 people, and for the murder of 7 others, even though he did not actually kill them. His band of followers were known as the “Manson Family”, and they are most famous for brutally murdering actress Sharon Tate, Gary Hinman, and others. The “family” was also responsible for numerous thefts, assaults, and the attempted murder of President Gerald Ford. Manson was given the death sentence, but it was later ruled unconstitutional. He was in prison from 1971-2017 where he died from natural causes. Manson continued to have followers in prison and had hundreds of people (mainly women) writing to him.
A bodysuit is the ultimate way for a tattoo collector to show their dedication to the craft. A bodysuit is most often done as one cohesive piece, usually in one style. But some people do start getting tattooed without the intention of having a bodysuit, then end up growing into it.
Japanese is the most well known style for creating bodysuits. Done by one artist, tied together with background work such waves, clouds, and other nature themes.
More recently black work is becoming more popular for full bodysuits. Either heavy black work or smaller pieces.
Similarly people get bodysuits of American traditional pieces. Hundreds of small pieces filling up a body to make it look more or less like one huge suit.
Black and grey, neo traditional, and realism styles are also being used for bodysuits now, making for eye popping artwork.
The word bodysuit may make you think of really a full body covered in tattoos, but it also refers to torso pieces that lead onto the arms, and/or legs.
Frankenstein is a story that has delighted and frightened readers since 1818, now two hundred years!
Frankenstein is the story of a mad doctor that brings the dead back to life. Only to find that he has made a monster.
Mary Shelley wrote Frankenstein when she was 18, and had it published when she was 20. She wrote it for a writing contest for ghost stories, and she shocked the world!
When the book initially came out, readers were disgusted and horrified, but by 1823 it became widely popular, as gothic literature was becoming all the rage.
In 1910 the first Frankenstein film was made by Thomas Edison, a one-reel 15 minute short film, thought by some to be the first horror movie.
Many others have been made including Frankenstein in 1931, Bride of Frankenstein in 1935, Son of frankenstein in 1939, The Ghost of Frankenstein in 1942, and many more!
Fans of gothic literature and horror movies often get Frankenstein tattoos, mainly of the monster, whose name is not actually Frankenstein. Many relate to the monster because he is a misunderstood creature. He may have some violent tendencies, but what he really wants is to be understood and feel love.
Frankenstein tattoos are often done in realism, black and grey, neo traditional, and American traditional, as well as black work.
“Even broken in spirit as he is, no one can feel more deeply than he does the beauties of nature. The starry sky, the sea, and every sight afforded by these wonderful regions, seems still to have the power of elevating his soul from earth. Such a man has a double existence: he may suffer misery, and be overwhelmed by disappointments; yet, when he has retired into himself, he will be like a celestial spirit that has a halo around him, within whose circle no grief or folly ventures.” ― Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, Frankenstein
According to Greek mythology, Medusa was born a beautiful woman, one of three sisters known as the Gorgons. When she was still human she was a priestess to the goddess Athena. Being a priestess she was sworn to celibacy.
So how did a beautiful maiden turn into the monster we’re all familiar with? Medusa was really a victim, and turning into a monster was not at all her fault, but the god of the sea, Poseidons. Poseidon met Medusa and was immediately infatuated. He tried over and over again to seduce Medusa, who refused each time. Finally Medusa sought refuge in Athena’s temple to get away from Poseidon. Poseidon didn’t care and went after her, following her into the temple of Athena, where he forced himself on her against her will.
To punish Medusa for having relations inside her temple, Athena turned Medusa into a monster. A woman with snakes for hair that could turn any who looked upon her directly into stone. Seeing herself as a hideous monster, Medusa fled, shunned by all, wandering alone. In her despair her character turned into the monster of her outward appearance.
Many warriors tried unsuccessfully to slay Medusa, but all were turned to stone, and her reputation grew with each kill. Until Perseus was sent to collect her head and bring it to the king Polydectes. Perseus was given quite a bit of help to complete this task, which the other warriors did not have. He was given a sword smithed by the god Hephaestus, Hades’ helmet of invisibility, winged sandals from Hermes, and a mirrored shield from Athena.
Perseus was able to slay Medusa by looking at her reflection in the mirrored shield so he could see her coming and not be turned to stone. He decapitated her, and in doing so freed her from Athena’s curse.
As a tattoo Medusa is often done in black and grey, neo traditional, realism, blackwork, and American traditional. She is most often tattooed as just her head, either visibly decapitated or portrait style.
Who is your favourite mythological Greek character?