Fish Tattoo

My niece, Danya, looked through her grandmother’s portfolio from RISD and really liked this drawing of three fish in a circle. It’s dated Feb. 4, 1944, so my mother was 19 years old when she drew it, the same age her granddaughter was when she chose it as the inspiration for her tattoo.    

drawing by Mary Hartwell (Mavor), 1944

Mary and her mother, Louise Hartwell, 1944

Danya is my brother Jim’s daughter, the youngest and only girl out of 5 grandchildren. She worked for me for a few summers, putting kits together when I still made them at Wee Folk Studio. She is now a sophomore in college, where she is discovering art history. For her tattoo, Danya traced one of the fish from the drawing and made a black ink copy complete with bubbles. She brought it with her to the tattoo parlor and had the fish tattooed to the inside of her right arm. Now, she has a constant reminder of her grandmother, whom I think would be quite amused at the idea.     

Danya showing her fish tattoo

Danya's tattoo

Danya with her grandmother, 1990

7 thoughts on “Fish Tattoo

  1. I just love all your little embroideries. All your posts, but this one in particular, show how good design is really timeless. Nice story.


  2. Kind of makes you wonder what future generations will do with our art that we leave behind! I love the idea of my granddaughter taking something I’ve done and making it personal for her!

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