Hello, my name is Alexandra and I have tattoos.
I talked about my first tattoo (here), and have said that, personally, I’ll only get tats that are meaningful to me. So, why the eff would I get a tattoo of the scorch mark from Howl’s Moving Castle?
This is from the movie by Hayao Miyazaki, not the book by Diana Wynne Jones. Surprisingly, I prefer the movie to the book. The scorch mark is a curse to Howl from the Witch of the Waste in the form of a note in Sophie’s pocket (P.S. this is not a spoiler). It means ‘you who swallowed a falling star, oh heartless man, your heart shall soon belong to me’. Howl then erases the mark, since it can’t be good for the table.
There’s a lot behind this one, so buckle the fuckle up.
First of all, my love for Studio Ghibli, and particularly, the work of Hayao Miyazaki. This work is unprecedented, hand drawn, at double the frame rate animation needs to be. Miyazaki, not formally trained in art whatsoever, has made a career out of drawing and creating beautiful stories with his talent. And what I like particularly is using his talent to do what he likes, to show what he’s interested in, and to explore his passions. For example, this man interested in airplanes and passionate about pollution/destroying nature often surrounds his stories with flying of some form with a theme of anti-pollution and pro-nature.
It speaks to me.
Howl’s Moving Castle is also my favorite Miyazaki film. The theme of finding your inner beauty resonates with someone like me. I would like to get more Ghibli/Miyazaki tats in the future, so we’ll see.
Now, the scorch mark. Of all the symbolism in the movie, why this one? To me (which is probably not the intention, but I run with it) it means that others see only what they want to see. Now for the spoiler: Howl is heartless because he gave his heart to a fallen star (not a demon) to save its life. Calcifer lived because Howl was kind and gave him his heart. Perhaps everyone perceives you as evil, heartless, selfish when in reality you’re kind, selfless, and maybe a little afraid. Two things out of the scorch mark: no one will know the true you until they get to know you, and be kind.
This is a longer explanation than my first tattoo, made even longer if you don’t know the movie. What I really need is a five word explanation to my tats. If anyone has any suggestions, let me know.