Why I Choose A BAPE Character As My first Tattoo


A friend of mines recently asked me a question about a tattoo that I recently got a few weeks ago, and I have decided to talk about it and its meaning on my platform. My tattoo is of the latest conversion of the BAPE character of Kid Cudi. It wasn’t my original idea of what I wanted my first tattoo to be, it was something that I decided closer to the actual date of getting it and I will explain why. I wanted to get a tattoo for a very long time. I knew that whatever it would end up being, it couldn’t be some cute meaningless tattoo of some dolphin or some catchy phrase like, “Life goes on” or some shit like that. I knew that it would have to mean EVERYTHING to me.

When I first dabbled on the idea of a tattoo, I was going through different ideas of how I wanted to show an appreciation and tribute to Michael Jackson. His death shifted me in more ways than one and I thought a reminder of that would keep me on that track. Along with the idea of a tribute to Prince, it became more of a novelty idea than something that I wanted as a permanent reminder of my journey in life. As some people may know or not, I spend almost four years in a homeless shelter with my son, Michael. Those were some of the hardest times of my life. I felt like giving up on my dreams so many times because of the people that were there were so uninspiring and literal dream killers. They often made me feel guilty of wanting to pursue my career while doing what was needed in order to get out of that situation. During that time, when I thought my life could not get any worse, this musician that I used to listen to so heavily all those years ago, was going through his own personal battle with hell. So getting back in touch with his music and him as an artist, it took my mind off of the odds that was building up against me. It gave me the push to keep going.

So fast forward to two years later, I got my first apartment, I met his friend Dotdagenius, I saw him in concert (three times) and I finally received the acknowledgment from him personally, I knew that I was moving in the direction that I am supposed to move in life. So the idea of the tattoo came from a video that he posted of a new chain that he had made for himself by fame Jeweler Ben Baller. Ben Baller has made priceless jewelry pieces for every celebrity that you can think of. Now the correlation of the necklace and my tattoo may fall on blind eyes and deaf ears for those who aren’t huge fans of his work, so allow me to explain. In the very beginning of Kid Cudi’s career, he wore a lot of flashy jewelry. However, once he started to become more disinterested with the ostentatious side of the entertainment industry, he started to wear chains less and less. To see him work towards building himself to the man that he once was with a lot of maturity and strength that he has obtained over the years, meant a lot to a lot of fans including myself.


So during the process of getting the tattoo, I asked a friend of mines Christian (also a Cudder fan) to come with me while I got the ink work finally done. I admit I was nervous as hell. I didn’t know if I would go through with it or if I would chicken out in the last minute. But the one thing that I kept telling myself as I felt myself clamming up with anticipation was, it couldn’t be worse than labor pains. And trust me, it wasn’t. There is no way of preparing yourself for getting a tattoo. Between looking up pain comparisons to how to take care of a tattoo afterward, I was so overwhelmed with information that I at this point, I just wanted to get it done. People have asked me about the pain factor of getting the tattoo. Yes, it does sting and yes it does burn, however, it is not unbearable.

I will say that getting the tattoo definitely gave me a sense of freedom, having a strict parent in the household has made me felt stifled in my creativity. So back to the conversation that I had with my friend. I explained to him the purpose of me getting this particular tattoo. This tattoo shows me strength. It shows me the image of a man who walked away from the brink of death and changed his perspective of life. I have seen so many fans get tattoos, of “Reborn”, a song from his collaborative album with Kanye West, Kids See Ghosts. I have also seen people get “Keep moving forward”, also a  line from the track. But I wanted to get something that has the same meaning but original. Every time I look down at my wrist, I see change, I see rebirth, I see a goal of reaching both internal and external happiness. I see the finish line and a light at the end of the tunnel.

So I hope that gives people some type of perspective about not only my tattoo but thoughts of what type of tattoos that they will like to get in the future. Of course, this is a permanent decision and you should pick something you know that you can live with and be proud of. If you got this far, thanks for reading.

Happy tattooing.