Here is the final SKETCH of a commissioned tattoo design for a client with two children. You may be interested in some of the design details and the symbolism that went into it.
Here's what I explained in my latest note to her:
Size & Placement: I have made this for the left shoulder, as you requested. The place where it curves sharply should go near the top of your shoulder, so the design above it curves over the top of your shoulder toward your back. the part below the curve comes down your arm. I like it larger rather than smaller. Too small and the tattooist will lose the detail. Also, you don't want it to look like a little patch. Between seven and nine inches tall seems to look the best. That's up to you, though. I will send you more than one size for you to try out. I suggest you photocopy or print it in each size, cut around the edge and hold it against your shoulder to see exactly how you want it before you have it done.
Density: This sketch is not filled in black yet. That comes next. I actually like it delicate like this, so I will also send you the line drawing version (Outlined in black but not filled in.) You may like the delicacy of it. Or not.
The symbolism: The two vines, while intertwined with each other, run parallel at the shoulder, like two stripes (your badge of honor as a mother.) The Ivy vine is unbroken and the five leaves are all open and front=forward. The pumpkin vines are slightly more delicate and are broken up. At the beginning of each is a blossom which is drooping or faded (It was a hard beginning for you.) Then the vines produce strong, open flowers.
Today I will be making the final drawing. I will post it tomorrow. Stay tuned.