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Temporary Body Art

Shawn Syse spends her free time coloring people's bodies. She's not using a needle like tattoo artists or even ink. Shawn uses a mixture of crushed dried henna leaves, lemon juice, eucalyptus oil and sometimes a strong dark tea or even coffee. Henna or mehndi is a temporary tattoo with a history that goes back thousands of years. Over 5000 years ago it was used on Egyptian mummies and as a healing medicine in the Middle East.

Shawn and her husband own Mehndi2DyeFor in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The 31 year-old has been a professional henna artist for about four years. At one time she wanted to get a tattoo and found out about henna instead. She became fascinated with the art and began practicing. First it was a hobby and now it's a profession. She did finally get her tattoo - a circle of suns and moons around her ankle.

Most of the couple's work is done at private parties, corporate events and festivals. At any number of festivals Frank and Shawn are up at 7am and off to set up at the festival grounds. "Working at festivals is a lot about educating the general public to the art of mehndi and exactly what it is, how it works, how long it lasts (about two weeks), what's in the paste, and so forth. We spend a good part of the day creating beautiful designs one after the other, many times hours without breaks."

"Typically we are most asked to henna hands, ankles, tops of feet (and soles too), ankles, wrists, lower backs, backs of necks, shoulders and backs. The strangest place I have ever hennaed was the middle of a guy's face, like where your third eye would be or where someone would wear a bindi (the red spot worn by Bramin Hindus,)" explains Shawn. She says the most common tattoo is a toss up between armbands and anklets.

Henna art is usually made from 100 percent natural ingredients and only comes in different shades of brown/mahogany/dark orange. "Any other colored hennas you see on the market today, including black henna, are actually not henna at all but some type of food coloring that will rub off and ruin clothing," warns Shawn. "Some black hennas, which are not henna at all, include toxic chemicals that can cause internal organ damage, burning, blistering and permanent scaring." Her advice is to stay away from black henna and have your designs done by a reputable artist, who you can contact if you have any type of reaction.

The artist doesn't plan on drawing on people for the rest of her life. She's going to culinary school to become a chef. As much as she likes henna the passion to cook is much stronger.

Do you have a favorite artist? Is there a type of art you really love?

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General In The Forums

Fairkss
Explanation: Hoshi was best friends with the moon girl, Sina who secretly loved him but they drifted apart when Hoshi met Dimitre, a Russian boy. He hung out with Dimitre more and they both fell in love with each other. However, Sina was jealous and so she got Cira, the sun girl, who was in love with Dimitre to distract him and hang out with him. Dimitre was too kind to reject her so he just hung out with her. In the shadows, Sina was bullying and threatening Hoshi not to meet with Dimitre because if he did she would hurt Dimitre. One day Hoshi couldn't handle it and so he ran to find Dimitre after school. He saw Dimitre and went towards him only to get hit by a car. Dimitre saw Hoshi lying on the floor and rushed towards him and hugged him while Hoshi slowly died in his arms. Dimitre never got over his death after that point.
reply about 2 hours
Fairkss
There once was a boy named Hoshi. Just like his name his smile was as bright as the stars in the sky. One day he met another boy who's eyes were a mixture of the aqua ocean and green land, Earth. His name was Dimitre and he came from a far away land. They fell hard for each other. Their love stronger than anything in the galaxy. The star left the moon's side to join hands with the earth in their journey of love. But a girl carrying a name that meant the moon felt jealous. Jealous of the stars love for the Earth. She wanted to make it so that Hoshi could never meet Dimitre again, and with the help of another girl with her sun-kissed hair, the star could never see the Earth. The sun would blind the Earth so much that he couldn't see Hoshi who would shine brightly with teary eyes, and then when the sun would go to sleep so did the Earth, and only the stars would feel pain. Months went by and Hoshi's heart only broke harder and harder until a plan popped in his brain. The star, lost and all alone, cut off the wings that allowed him to shine and he fell out of the sky with hot fiery pain. Dimitre saw Hoshi in his hurt and painful state and embraced him. They could finally be together. Only for a brief moment, until Hoshi could feel himself slip into a deep sleep wrapped in Dimitre's arms. The star had gone out, and had left a gaping hole in the Earth's heart that could never be filled.
reply about 2 hours
nqme
nqme posted in Debating:
I appreciate it, but that doesn't help my conscience.  To me, you're practically saying "if one of us dies, that's okay because there are still plenty of other humans all around the world".  I don't put other animals above us, of course, but they still exist.  Anyway, good day.  Enjoy this egg's before  [s:p/1n9v] and after  [s:p/1n7e] because I'm not sure how to say "good day" without sounding sarcastic.
reply about 3 hours
Igiveuponthename
That's because of our own human nature. We often value ourselves more than anyone else. Everybody affects everybody indirectly. People value progress over everything. One day the world will come crashing down, and with this crumbling and twisted society with it. Want to make a difference? Well, it's not too late to start.
reply about 4 hours
Fairkss
Fairkss posted in Say Anything:
I really hate how society is built. I really hate how unaccepting people are and how we have gotten this far due to sacrifices and inflicting pain on others. Why do we do this to our own kind? ​We are just destroying ourselves because we are unable to understand why some people do what they do. Why can't we just accept people for how they are? They're heart and their soul. I know the world can't be perfect but honestly right now the world isn't okay. Of course I'm just a kid so whatever I say won't matter but anyways that's just what has been on my mind lately :)
reply about 4 hours