Progression of a Design – Woodland Nymph

Normally when I do these “Progression of a Design” blogs it is about showing the client’s original concept and where we went with it from there. Since I have been tattooing Sarah for a while and we have a good working relationship she had told me only that she wanted a woodland nymph sitting on a mushroom playing the drums.

Most of her forearm was free except for a small piece that we had placed previously on her wrist.

So the first thing to do was to sketch out an oblong area that the nymph would fit well within. I also found out that there is a fungus that is called a Dryad’s Saddle which is indigenous to this area (Sarah spends a lot of time outside and of course knew this before the internet told me) and decided that would be the best choice for the mushroom.

When making a tattoo of a full body character I like to fold them up as much as possible to better utilize the space available. In this case having the drum in a comfortable position meant the character couldn’t be too crunched up.

After some rough thumbnails my first sketch looked like this:

Overall I was pretty pleased with the sketch so it just needed to be tightened up further:

nymph sketch


Sarah approved the design when she came in <<whew!>> and we resized it for her arm (Being a larger girl, I forget that everyone else is not my size and tend to draw designs too big). Between my tendencies toward little details in my drawings when left to my own devices and having shrunk the design…. it did take a while. Sarah sat like a champ and we had a great visit (as always).


woodland nymph tattoo

Now normally that would be the end of the story…

But in this case I wasn’t finished. I am involved in a group that is doing a small scale art swap. We are exchanging small (under 8×10) original art. I had a piece that I had done previously that I was going to use for the swap – but it somehow felt like cheating to have not created something new for it.
So I decided to instead cheat and recycle this tattoo design as a painting.

So here is the watercolor that I made of the design.

Woodland Nymph watercolor


I think that probably completes the progression of this design. Although I do have a sneaking suspicion that the ring-tailed critter is going to be making further appearances in my projects. You just never know about these things.

~ by justteejay on December 2, 2011.

2 Responses to “Progression of a Design – Woodland Nymph”

  1. Love her!

  2. […] ago that Sarah was here last – this is further progression on the design posted previously here. And lastly a color portrait of Jay’s daughter named KatieRose (which you can’t really […]

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