Norman Tattoo Artist Goes Viral For Memorial Tattoo
NORMAN, Oklahoma - One local tattoo artist's name is going viral for her work on a special tattoo.
Ashley Primm works at Studio Ink in Norman.
"I've been tattooing, if you count my first couple apprentice years, seven
years," said Primm.
Each day Primm transforms skin into a permanent canvas.
"I haven't done a lot of pieces like his," said Primm.
She's talking about the current piece she's creating for Nick Craft.
"Its an honor but to be truthful I almost wanted to send him elsewhere," said Primm.
What Craft wanted was hard to put into words.
"It was just something that was stuck in my head," explained Craft.
Nick wanted to pay a special tribute to his sister Jessika.
"Everywhere that she went growing up, I went there with her," said Craft.
The siblings shared a special bond throughout their childhood and into their adult years.
"I was a coach for her for Special Olympics," said Craft. "Anywhere, we went to amusement park I was right there."
Craft and his family didn't take any day for granted because they didn't know how many they would get with Jessika. Despite dozens of surgeries, being partially paralyzed and mentally handicapped, Jessika found purpose and a reason to smile.
Craft said his sister introduced him to his now wife in high school and showed him a whole different perspective on life.
This past May Jessika spent her last day with her mom in Georgia. The two had moved to the southern state together.
After the funeral, Craft got an idea for a tattoo.
"I had this image stuck in my head that she just got up out of her chair and she was walking to the gates."
Craft decided that's how he wanted to remember his sister, walking.
He said he went to different shops trying to get them to understand his idea. But with just a few pictures in hand, only Primm was able to put together what Craft had in mind.
Right now the tattoo, that features a silhouette of a woman walking toward the gates of heaven and leaving behind a wheelchair, is halfway done. But even incomplete it's impacting people all over the country.
Primm posted a picture of the tattoo to her Facebook page. The post now has over 30,000 shares and comments continually pour in.
"When it hit 1,000 I was surprised," said Primm. "People all the way out in Virginia, Ohio [and] Maryland, I see them stretched out that far that are reacting to it," said Craft.
"I think that it just speaks to a lot of people in general," said Primm. Who hasn't lost a loved one? Who doesn't have hope that they're in a better place and they're free from pain and whatever limitations they had in life?"
There's still about three hours of work left on the tattoo, but Craft said he's happy his permanent memorial will carry on his sister's legacy.
"She would love it," said Craft.
Craft's next appointment is in a few weeks, and Primm said she will post a final picture.