The insanity of 28mm cleavage tattoos

Right.  So that’s got to be my most attention-grabbing headline ever.  Am I crazy for attempting such a thing?  Turns out yeah.  Pretty much.

In case you’re wondering what I’m referring to, I’ve finally started on my Asuka Kisaragi model.  It’s probably not controversial to say that this miniature is very sexy.  When I sat down to think about how best to paint her, I couldn’t help but feel she’s maybe a bit too sexy.

That could mean a bunch of things, so to clarify: the thing with Asuka is… well… she has extremely bounteous cleavage.  And for some reason she has decided to unzip her leathers between the neck and breastbone so that said cleavage pops out.  This is obviously not a bad thing in and of itself; but I like my models to look a bit like soldiers, since they’re going to be fighting in, you know, a wargame.

The real issue is aesthetic: I’ve looked at a lot of Asukas online, and there seems to be no way to avoid the boobs becoming the focal point of the model.  It’s been designed that way.  But I think she’s sexy enough – and a great model besides – without boobs being her face, as it were.  So how do I tone down the cleavage and bring the rest of the model out?  Well, I have this habit of biting off more than I can chew and trying things beyond my abilities when it comes to miniatures.  So I decided to tattoo her cleavage with ridiculously intricate traditional Japanese designs.

First I did some legitimate research on Yakuza and Bosozuku tattoos, since Asuka is basically a Bosozuku bikie who’s become a soldier.  Then, I did entirely too much “just as legitimate research” looking at pics like this:

From YAKUZA WOMEN on Pinterest.  Not safe for work...

From YAKUZA WOMEN on Pinterest. Not safe for work.

Then I started to paint her, and that’s when it all went horribly wrong.  Infinity models are just so fine and tiny in general, and Asuka’s impressive cleavage is approximately the size of half a grain of raw sushi rice.  The model is so fine that the skin had to be painted first, and then the tattoos added in thin layers.  My first attempt looked like a dirty green stain on her skin.  I had to use alcohol to clean it off.  Oh, and I swear my eyesight is going.  Because my eyes kept unfocusing at the wrong moment, like I had to force them to look and stay focused.

What I learned is basically this: if you’re going to attempt something in this vein, go for the impression of intricate designs rather than actually trying to do them.  The lines of a tattoo in 28mm scale are finer than any brush that exists, and maybe finer than the human eye can see.  So go for outlines (I used a .03mm pen) filled in with thin washes, and a single highlight to make it look like there’s more going on than there actually is.  Oh and bright colours – orange, pale blue – work better than dark ones.

It doesn’t look as good as it did in my head, but you can see it’s meant to be tattoos.  And I think my aim has been achieved: you can tell she has her boobs out, but it might not be the first thing you notice. Depending on how boob-attuned you are I guess.

By the way, I realise I’ve written a few painting articles without any pictures of models!  Sorry.  I’m not much for work in progress shots, because taking decent photos is hard for me, and time-consuming.  So you’ll have to wait a bit to see the finished product, because I’m still working on the bike.  But I’m proud to say that she looks quite different from any Asukas I’ve seen online.

Till next time,


19 thoughts on “The insanity of 28mm cleavage tattoos

  1. Dragons Claw says:

    You big old tease you James

  2. sinsynn says:

    I woulda gone with ‘the awesomeness of cleavage tattoos, ‘ but it’s still the best blog post title of da year.

  3. Dragons Claw says:

    I do I do although I confess to being a bit disappointed linking to the daily mail the worst of the worst of British rags.

    I usually try to avoid even reading the reactionary coded racist headlines of the Immigrants cause cancer type persuasion and there over reaction to anything that might affect property values as if the housing market bubble wasn’t largely responsible for the financial mess we’re in now or that we’ve got a an entire generation priced out of the property market average house price in the UK Is pushing £200k whilst average wages languish south of £25k combining with next to zero inflation over the last 5 years means that the wealth of the country is increasingly concentrated in the hands of the baby boomer generation.

    Sorry for the off topic rant B)

    • beat ronin says:

      Ah, Daily Mail is your evil stupid newspaper? I thought that article seemed like it was written by a borderline illiterate.

      It’s pretty much the same here, which I guess is not a surprise. I feel like at the moment the US is the only country in the English speaking world that has not given into mass insanity about immigrants, layabouts and “youths not working hard enough.” As if working hard for your entire life could buy you a house at today’s prices. Obama is out there trying to make decisions with China that will lead to a better future for earth as a whole, and Tony Abbott and the Canadian dude and your bloke are denying climate change and pretending that it’s the powerless poor people who are ruining everything.

      Yeah as you can see, I sympathise with your rant. You know, about ten years ago when I regularly read BoLS, the general political attitude was more conservative I’d say. Now gamers seem to be more often than not liberal-leaning. Maybe.

  4. Dragons Claw says:

    The conservative liberal line I tend to play jump rope with I’m socially liberal but economically conservative.

    The climate change debate ceased to be any sort of debate many years ago and have become acts of faith on both side’s I Think this can seen clearly in how anti climate changers are called deniers if that phrase isn’t loaded with religious symbolism. Also the science is no where near as clear as either side would have you believe. Did you notice how global warming became climate change after it inconveniently got cooler for 12 years straight its also been demonstrably hoter and cooler in recorded history. The Romans grew grapes in northern Britain you couldn’t do that today. Man has definitely affected our environment to its detriment and putting shit into the air can’t be good and the developed world has a responsibility to the developing world to help them learn from our mistakes without hampering there economic development but it comes down to me personally that I just don’t like the people on either side of the debate a pox on both their housed

    Also are guy has levied enough green taxes and wasted massive amounts if money on wind farms I’m not sure he’s a denier

    • beat ronin says:

      I have to admit I don’t know much about UK politics, I was mainly talking out of my arse about your PM 😀

      The thing about the climate change science is that how clear it is depends on where you get your science! Personally I think the reason it’s ceased to be a debate is that it’s pretty clear we need to dramatically wind back our industrial approach to nature. I’m not up on the science myself, but the guy I used to share my office with when I was doing my PhD was working on cross-generational responsibility, with an emphasis on climate change issues, and he assured me that the science is unequivocal and that any uncertainty is being generated by scientists and media outlets with vested interests in denial. Take from that what you will, but if an extremely intelligent and fair-minded person in academia trying his best to discover the truth came to that conclusion, well, I find that pretty convincing. Basically my own view is that even if it’s not true, we should be cultivating some fucking discipline and restraint in all aspects of life anyway because decadence and uncontrolled extravagance are bad things.

      Totally with you on the conservative/liberal dichotomy. Frankly I don’t know what other terms to use (“left” and “right” are even more outdated), but most people aren’t one or the other that’s for sure. Like I said, I think people should be disciplined and frugal economically, but I’m liberal socially as well.

  5. Dragons Claw says:

    I actually grew up surrounded by academics my Dad was a college lecturer then the Director of Studies at a Keele university and my mums a social worker who was qualifying whilst I was in my tweens (don’t ask what happened to me both my parents where horrified with most of my life choices but kids gotta rebel I spose).

    Academics are one of the worst examples of group think I’ve ever come across there tends to be a decided left wing lean and what I would characterize as pernicious attitude to any disenters dismissing them as intellectually inferior. Don’t get me wrong I’ve met a lot I really liked but the culture of academia definitely breeds a certain viewpoint re things like climate change, international relations or social agenda. Look at your friends thesis title cross generational responsibility with an emphasis on climate change issues the nature of the debate or lack of is framed in the question.

    I’m nowhere near smart enough to wrap my head round the whole issue but I’m sceptical of anyone that claims any kind of mandate or consensus.

    UK politics is mostly irrelevant nowadays are foreign policy is mostly an extension of the US’s and most legal and economic policy Is dictated from Brussels any laws passed by the British parliament being subject to review by the European courts. Which is another issue I believe but don’t want to be identified with the proponents of. I’m in favour of European integration in fact the sooner we do away with nationalism realise we’re all human beings and set out to explore the stars the better. But the pro-european crowd are the worst the marginalisation of any dissenters when Ireland and Belgium voted no they made them do referendum after referendum until they got it “right”

    • beat ronin says:

      Well, that wasn’t the title. That’s my pocket version of what it was about.

      I think we’ll have to agree to disagree. I mean, I think you’re right about the culture of academia – that’s one of the reasons I dropped out, I felt as though dissenting views were being subtly (or not so subtly) squashed – but really I think that’s a human thing, not an academic thing. Name one area of human interaction where dissent from the prevailing view is given equal consideration with no ridicule or disparagement, covert or overt.

      That’s the paradox of academia as I see it. They have a sort of mandate from the rest of society to seek the truth, but then people feel that there is intellectual skullduggery going on somewhere when they come up with a near consensus. Maybe they all think the same way because it’s groupthink. Or maybe it’s because they’re the only people with the time to actually investigate all the evidence and digest it properly, and come up with the best answer? I mean, virtually all scientists are academics or have been part of formal academia at some point, even if it was just to get their doctorate. So if you discount a scientific consensus because you suspect academic groupthink, where are you? You’re basically calling our culture’s main accepted method of truth-finding invalid. I admit it has weaknesses, but on balance I’d rather believe a scientific/academic consensus on something I don’t know how to investigate for myself than not believe it.

      Re: the EU, yeah, it’s really frustrating when you have a good reason for thinking something but the other people who often think it are idiots! Do I go with the idiots or change my mind?

  6. Dragons Claw says:

    I reserve the right to be inconsistent on how I deal with that question sometimes the idiots piss me off enough to send me the opposite way from sheer bloody mindedness sometimes the issues important enough to me to ignore the idiots.

    I may have come off a bit harsh on academics I’m not the greatest writer I write exactly as I talk and forget I can’t soften a line with a smile or other body language and I tend to talk quickly much quicker than I type. I wasn’t knocking research and I’m a big believer in evidence based practice which is impossible without academics its more how they colectify in opinions outside there respective fields socio-politically a lot of which I think stems from the close links between education and other public sector state dependant organisations

    • beat ronin says:

      Hey Joe no worries at all. I think you’re right, academics do tend to have similar political beliefs to one another in my experience – especially young ones. And you are certainly right that they often forget that being an expert in one field doesn’t mean you understand everything. My partner used to work in a lab (she’s not a scientist), and she would often come home raging at how arrogant the scientists were about pretty much everything, in their field or not. I particularly remember her telling me of a couple of them ranting that the police had no idea where to place speed traps and if only they asked them, they could tell them how to do their job much more efficiently. It reminded me of Sheldon Cooper. To just presume that your PhD in plant phenomics makes you better at policing than the police force! Of course people in general are like this, but I find academics and scientists are especially prone to assuming an air of infallibility on all topics. I know I’ve done it before.

      That said, what my friend was doing was not pronouncing on a political issue outside his field: he was writing a thesis in ethics and policy, in a very critical intellectual environment, and taking all care to come out with the honest truth as far as he could see it. In other words, doing (social) science. I was there: there’s no way the people in that department would let someone get away with making unjustified claims. For one thing it reflects badly on the department, which has a very good reputation internationally.

      I have the problem of idiots when it comes to Southern Cross tattoos. I don’t have any tattoos (heh, sort of back to the topic of the post!), but if I did I often think a Southern Cross would be good. It’s the major constellation associated with the sky in Australia, and I think is nice aesthetically and symbolically. Too bad it’s been co-opted by borderline white supremacists. It’s our version of the confederate flag but I wish it wasn’t 😦

  7. Dragons Claw says:

    It’s strange I don’t associate Australia with white supremacist although my image of Australia was formed mostly from Neighbours & Home and Away those shows were massive in the UK in the late 80’s and early 90’s Kylie Minogue is an adopted national treasure over here. I’m assuming your immigration issues eminates from Asia? Cause there’s some real comic fodder to be had with a white supremacist and an aborigine of the “go home” “we were here first ” “well we didn’t want to come anyway” lines

    Ours is currently from eastern Europe with Romania and Latvia joining the EU but we have this perverse cycle over here we have good economic periods no one wants to scrub toilet so we get a load of immigrants to come over to do them the economy tanks and we blame them for taking all the jobs 😦 wtf we did it to the afro carribeans in the 50’s sub continental India in the 60’s and 70’s the Greeks and cypriots in the 80’s philipino’s in the 90’s. And on and on but the send em all home brigade never distinguish between economic migration illegal immigration and asylum seekers and with our colonial history and various foreign misadventures in the 20th century our moral commitments are huge.

    No tats here either distinguishing marks would have been a big liability with some of the work I did in northern Ireland

    • beat ronin says:

      It’s Arabs and Africans that they hate at the moment. There has been some real violence between bogans (by which I mean Ned Kelly idolizing, Southern Cross tattooed white Australians, most likely descended from English and Irish convicts), and Lebanese migrants in recent years. There’s also been an influx of people fleeing wars in Africa, some of whom are not what you’d call nice people. And some really terrible incidents of white or indiginous girls being sexually assaulted by gangs of African or Middle Eastern youths. So there’s actually quite a bit of tension when I think about it.

      But yeah. Before the muslims and Africans came, there were Asian migrants (Viets and Chinese mostly), and before that Greeks and Italians, and before that when my mum was a girl the Catholics and the Protestants used to fight. Probably just human nature for a certain proportion of the population.

      The aboriginal people are in a position similar to native Americans from what I can gather. Many of them live isolated on tribal land in the north and west, and the ones in the cities are often extremely disadvantaged and indistinguishable from junkies in the street. They have a lot of problems with health and access to equal advantages. And many of them are still very angry that we ever came here.

      It’s funny, my brother lived in the UK and he said he was once talking to a guy at the pub who said “it’s terrible what you people did to the Aborigines.” My bro just looked at him and said “what do you mean us people? You people did it!” It was very rare before the 1950s to meet a white Australian who didn’t identify as a displaced English or Irish person in a foreign land, even if they were three or more generations Australian. People are funny.

  8. Dragons Claw says:

    The world gets smaller every day I suppose your tensions arn’t dissimilar to ours we had a spate of white girls being sexually assaulted by gangs of pakistani men the real stink of that though was they were targeting young girls in care homes supposedly under the protection of the state but being pakistani it played out by feeding into the Islamophobia.

    • beat ronin says:

      Islamophobia is right. Our racists seem to be less concerned that they’re stealing jobs, and more that they’re destroying our culture. People seem genuinely afraid that they’re under siege by evil foreigners who want to take over Australia and squeeze the white people out. I sometimes see Aussie flag bumper stickers that say: “speak English or fuck off.”

  9. Dragons Claw says:

    Well that gets us to some really interesting territory on the whole assimilation integration debate there’s a bit of a back lash going on against the multi cultural model at the moment and although you get a lot of silly noise from the far right I think it’s something that needs to be discussed.

    We’ve moved through several models in the UK firstly we expected a high level of assimilation speak English and tolerance of other cultures. Then some time in mid 90’s the idea started to reach prominence that just being tolerant wasn’t enough and infact anything short of complete acceptance was somehow intrinsically racist. With this went a sort of hand ringing about forcing our cultural norms including around language on to immigrants. this kind of coalesced when Blair came to power in 98 and an industry sprung up to enforce this multi cultural model led strongly by quangos (quasi autonomous non government organisations) and the right wing press gots lots of mileage out of black disabled lesbian inclusion officer’s position in local councils usually with a ridiculously high salary.

    We are now starting to see significant issues infact in some areas English has become 3rd or 4th spoken and a lot of mileage is made out of polyglot ghettos.

    This is one of the big stories running round at the moment this is from the Telegraph a right of centre paper I read to offset the left lean of the BBC my other main source of news. The backlash has all been around teaching britishness in schools the only problem being no one’s entirely sure what britishness is.

    The point is that we want a plural society but how do you integrate communities who don’t and to what level do we expect newcomers tobfit into our culture its a balancing act to be sure

    • beat ronin says:

      Definitely an important discussion. Australia has never had enough affluent intellectuals to drive a general wave of tolerance, so we never had that. I remember in the 90s and early 2000s though, British people on game sites and forums would often mention that the UK was going mad with political correctness. It seems to have eased off now come to think of it.

      I don’t have the answers, but I guess my general opinion is pretty middle of the road on this issue. Of course I feel a pull to protect my culture, such as it is, from dilution. I think that’s only human. But I also think foreign-speakers and people who aren’t assimilating are probably just having trouble, rather than making trouble. It’s a lot to expect of someone, and it’s probably beyond a lot of people to ever assimilate into a foreign land. It’s something that is often only achievable by children, so in that sense the greatest “weapon” for assimilating arrivals and preserving a host culture is the school system. So long as the kids are all in together and speaking English I guess it’ll still be Australia, just a slightly different Australia.

      I’ve also been thinking of deliberately reading media outside my comfort zone to offset bias. Good idea. When your choices are reading something you already agree with, or reading something guaranteed to make you angry… well neither of those are very helpful.

      PS that article was a bit of a worry given what I just said about schools!

  10. Dragons Claw says:

    It’s always worth stepping out of your comfort zone especially with the media. It becomes all to easy to stay comfortable and slip into the mindset that every reasonable person has an outlook similar to yours and that opinions outside that comfort zone are somehow unreasonable and a bit crazy. There are intelligent well meaning people on both sides of any debate.

    For all the noise that gets made on the fringes it seems to me that the majority of people in the English speaking world are centrists separated by very small degrees very few people think that government can fix everything or that capitalism should be left completely unregulated. I don’t mind the Telegraph the writings usually pretty decent and it’s not too far out there they’ve also been at the forefront of most of the good investigative journalism in the country over the last ten years it was them that broke the MP’s expenses scandal a few years back stay well clear of the comments section of any editorial though you will not find a more wretched hive of scum and villainy 😉

    The political correctness gone mad thing was probably fair comment at the time as I said it became an industry with all the associated lobbying and self propagation that entails and coming alongside the largest economic expansion in history it grew beyond its usefulness. A lot of criticism was levelled against the Blair government that it was creating a client state benefits and governmental jobs grew massively during these years.

    Tolerance is the key to all of it though if you want to have a plural society you have to be able to tolerate positions you find abhorrent cause to stay true to your own views you can’t accept everything.

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