“I was once told by my partner that covering my chest with ink would ruin my life and it was an absolute waste.”
Roaming around in tattoo conventions with a camera is probably the most ideal recreational activity to be involved in, because with that lens in your hand, you strike conversations. Conversations with amazing tattooed characters, who are full of stories and memories that you get a peek into. At the recently concluded Nepal Tattoo Convention 2017, I came across one such lovely, vibrant lady, Aurora Oz. With an infectious smile, and arguably the most powerful tattoos in the whole convention crowd, Aurora stood out, with an energy that was powerful, and equally beautifully breathtaking. Tattooed by the majestic Raph Cemo, and what is currently a WIP body suit, she carried her ink wonderfully well, and shared a visibly fantastic bond with her artist and brother, Raph.
During the consultation, we had an immediate bond
As someone who likes to explore the psychographics of tattoos, she is probably one of most interesting subjects I have come across, of late. So, we started talking about her tattoo experiences with Raph, her ideas and much more…
Shubham: When and how did the idea of your chest and back tattoo come up? And what was your idea/concept with this tattoo?
Aurora: I had originally seen Raph’s work when I was living in San Francisco and never thought I would be able to get any of his work done since he was in London at the time. I ended up moving to London for two years for a fine arts degree and was able to book an appointment with him.
Ideally, I was inspired by Raph’s metatron cubes as well as a lot of Ernst Haeckel’s illustrations. I could see the two of them tying in together with an organic, yet geometric piece. I knew Raph would fully understand my vision.
We knew this special bond would change our lives and link us together forever.
S: Tell us about your initial encounter with Raph?
A: I came across his work on Instagram and was immediately captivated. When I moved to London I contacted him through email and set up a consultation. During the consultation, we had an immediate bond. I was going through some really tough shit with my partner at the time, who wasn’t supportive of my body modifications. Raph knew immediately something was up. He grabbed my hands and reassured me everything would be okay. He transformed me into a goddess. I broke up with my partner a week later
S: Your tattoo is very unique, in its form, flow and shape. Take us through how you guys mapped that contour at the first place…
A: I told him I wanted it to be entirely his design. I gave him a general idea of the space I wanted to work in, my chest and throat. I remember when we first met, the look on his face when I told him I would give him my entire chest and throat. He said I was the first woman to freely offer her throat and he was beyond excited. All I was specific about was having the metatron cube in the center. Everything else I left up to him. Everything just flowed from there. I asked him to help me transform into a warrior goddess and he delivered. He read straight into me and was able to understand exactly the direction of the piece with no doubts.
S: Remember moments from your first session on this tattoo?
A: I think we both were immediately sure of each other. We knew this special bond would change our lives and link us together forever. I gave him the freedom to create a truly original piece. He picked up on all my doubts and suffering, and kept reassuring me he was going to help me grow and heal. He is like the big brother I’ve always wanted.
S: How long did it take for you guys to complete the whole piece?
A: The front was 24 hours. The extension onto my back was another 11 hours, and then my head, another 6 hours. We are planning a full torso piece so there is much more to come!
S: As a canvas, how would you describe Raph the artist? And as a friend, how would you describe Raph the person?
A: As a canvas, he is an absolute blessing. He truly has a godly understanding of the human mind, body and spirit. He moves fast and in full consideration of the person and their needs. His technique is absolutely perfected. Stencils in one, maybe two tries. The experience as a whole is incredibly healing. I learned about the importance of breathing and submitting to pain with his guidance. Allowing it to take over my consciousness. This was all really important for us as friends as well. We had challenging moments when we were both extremely exhausted after our first 9-hour session. I was in so much pain and still harnessing my strength. He had a really hard time causing so much pain but in the end we figured out how to get through it and he applies this knowledge for many of his sessions.
As a person, he is very considerate of his surroundings and the impact he has on people. He exerts so much energy to be able to heal others, it’s absolutely inspiring. He’s very fortunate that he has the support of his wife Jocelyn who is an absolute blessing! Getting to know him so well has given me the opportunity to create a strong bond with her as well. We are family now and I wouldn’t have it any other way. To know him you must know his love.
S: It is believed that our tattoos impact our psyche and way of thought, with the passage of time. They mature with us. Can you describe the bond you share with the ink on your body?
A: I was once told by my partner that covering my chest with ink would ruin my life and it was an absolute waste. I feel that creating this lifelong connection with Raph through this piece has changed my life ten fold into something I never knew could be achieved. As time passed, all these opportunities popped up. I became a part of the body modification community and inspired others to get work done. I had a huge amount of women praising me for my strength and feeling inspired to do the same for themselves. I was able to harness my womanhood and put my life into full focus. My career, my wants and needs became so apparent. I learned to fully love myself and continue the process of growing without the obstacles I had created and others had helped build. Raph and I became friends for life and consider ourselves spiritual siblings. I couldn’t feel anymore blessed. I still feel I have a huge journey ahead of me being as I’m still very young. This is only the beginning.