In Ink Spot, Amy Price stops strangers in Dallas to shoot, and learn about, their body art.
Alyssa Mitz, 22-year-old champion FlowRider, competitive surfer and valet manager, carries with her a canvas of tattoos mostly related to the sport she learned on the Texas coast as a little girl. Mitz displays an aqua-blue wave and bright burnt-orange sun on her half sleeve, and says the Polynesian waves stand for endless waves -- her ideal set.
"[It] doesn't really have a meaning, it's just a piece of art I've worked on since I was 14, it was something I always wanted," she says. She wants to eventually have the ocean theme travel down her arm and include sharks, jellyfish and coral.
On her left shoulder is a black, Polynesian tribal turtle. In the middle of the turtle's back is another continuation of her love for the "endless wave." The turtle also has hooks for fins. "The idea actually came from my amazing girlfriend, who also had a turtle on her back," she says. "The turtle means a lot to the both of us, and what it stands for, I guess you could say, brings us together."
Her lower calf is decorated with a traditional koi fish amidst a wave she got when she turned 18. Mitz said all her tattoos (with the exception of one) have the same theme: water. "Art for life and I'm OK to live by that," she says. "If I were to tell you a meaning I'd be lying to you."
Then there are the nautical star tattoos on the back of her arms. "That's what I like to call 'drunk and 17,'" Mitz says. She got those to mimic her brother's star tattoos and thought it was a good idea at the time. At the time.
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She says her love for surfing came from a trip to Galveston with her Dad when she was 8. Once she conquered getting up on her board, she was hooked. She started learning the FlowRider and quickly began competing. DFW Surf sends her across the country to compete in national competitions.