The Poughkeepsie Cover Tattoo Artist

The very favorite part of my Poughkeepsie cover is the tattoo on Blake's arm in the picture. It was created by an insanely talented artist, Shannon Lumetta. We also happen to be super close friends. Like I would fart in front of her. A lot.

I begged her for an interview and she let me have it ;) Now I'm sharing it with you!

Debra: So, you designed the tattoo on Blake's arm, I've heard many times that it is elegant and haunting. What was your process in creating it?

Shannon: Oh, thank you so much. Honestly, I still feel like it's a little rough around the edges, and an actual tattoo artist could probably do wonders with it. 

So, explaining my creative process is kinda like trying to understand the existence of Justin Bieber: futile and hopelessly depressing. Okay, maybe not that bad. For the tatt, you'd already given me the content, so I Google Image searched the elements for visual inspiration and then went to town in Illustrator.  

Debra: I'm trying to get up the guts to actually get the tattoo, do you have any? Can you tell the class what they mean to you?

Shannon: I think I'd like to get the tatt, too, but I'm not sure where I'd put it yet.

I do have tatts; four, but technically one is a coverup, so I've been on the table five times. ;) And yeah, I totally want MORE.

The first tattoo I got was an ugly butterfly on my hip by an artist that was obviously an apprentice (I knew how to make great decisions in college! "Hey, Shalu, I'm going to get a tattoo. Wanna go?" "No money." "I'll pay." "OK."). It ended up looking like a bruised molar. Good times. Now, that is covered up by a swirl of waves (inspired by Hokusai's The Great Wave, which is a favorite of mine)(see above). I also felt like water is fluid, as is almost anything else in life, so you'd better learn to go with the flow. Life stops for no one, so get moving or get out of the way, right? I know, I'm so profound. I want to continue that tattoo across my back eventually. Maybe for my 70th birthday, I can afford it. 

Debra: What are you working on now? Writing? Art? Both?

Shannon: I'm still trying to complete a couple of fanfic stories so that I could focus more on my novel that is languishing in edits. Plus, I have another book idea that needs the room to flourish. Yeah, there ain't enough time in the day.

If life were kinder, or fair, I'd have the opportunity to get back to a little photography. The old-school kind (with FILM!). I have a Minolta SLR that's a little older than I am (borrowed from my aunt) that I'd really like to take oot & aboot one day, just shooting whatever strikes. Someday.

I know you are extremely creative and talented, what kind of services do you offer the world? 
Sarcasm. And general awesomeness. LOL. I also give great massages. Happy endings cost more than you can afford. 

Can you show us some of your favorite pieces of art you have created (pictures, etc.) 

I have a couple, I suppose, but one of my favorites was kind of an accident. It's not incredible by any means, but it was a self-portrait from my first photography class, using a pinhole camera. I called it "Don't Scream" eventually, but ... well, it is what it is. :)

I'm also really proud of the would-be Poughkeepsie cover I created. (Before I was picked up by my publisher, I went to Shannon for a cover, after I was signed, their cover artists created the current Poughkeepsie cover using Shannon's artwork, just wanted to put her cover here fro anyone that was looking for an artist, to see her work)

Tell me your favorite movie, song, color, amusement park ride and snack food.

Movie: I love movies. So many. It's beyond impossible to pick one. Random "I could watch this a million times and still not be sick of it" flick: Scary Movie. Random artsy-ish flick I think is brilliant: Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind.

Song: I live in music. It can be the reason for my mood. So to have one favorite? Asinine. Radiohead is my favorite band, though — 90% of their catalog is my favorite. One fave: "Talk Show Host." (P.S. Thom Yorke and Johnny Greenwood: geniuses).

Amusement park ride: The Raptor (Cedar Point, Sandusky, OH). Also, that super-slow chair that takes you up & down stairs if you have trouble? Stair lifts, Google tells me their called. I swear I'm getting one of those should I have a house with stairs one day. My great-grandparents' house had one & I remember thinking it was the best thing ever. I'm lazy enough that I would use it when I'm just tired or bored or want some time to read a book. Forget elevators and escalators.

Snack food: A heaping spoonful of peanut butter with a little pool of Hershey's chocolate sauce in it. Seriously, I hollow it out with my tongue (I know, talent) and fill it with the Hersheys. Best. Thing. Ever.

So I know what you're thinking, "Can I get me some Shannon genius?" Well you are in luck because here is a link to her web page:

If you need a cover or art, she's you're girl. 
and thanks Shannon, you know I'm a huge fan of yours. 

XO ~Debra


  1. This was an awesome interview, Debra & Shannon! I had commented to Debra previously how the tattoo was a very clever design. I love how it means so much to many people after the story is read.

  2. You should know that the proper way learn how to tattoo is to get a traditional apprenticeship, and if you try to get hired at a download here



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