What if we all lived in a utopia, where there was no societal strife and everyone was adorned with ornate bodysuits? Watsun Atkinsun gives shape to this idealized version of humanity in his Illuminated Transformations series. In this ongoing project that resembles work by other multimedia artists like Cheyenne Randall, Atkinsun alters photographs of men and women by illustrating blackwork designs all over them with pen and ink. In doing so, he creates an alternate reality in which extensive body art makes the world a more beautiful and spiritually stirring place.
Most of Atkinsun’s make-believe bodysuits are too avant-garde to ever take shape on collectors in our current cultural zeitgeist, but this is also what makes them visionary. They are representative of an enlightened future in which individuals can be more outwardly expressive of their beliefs. “Ultimately, the Illuminated Transformations series is a romantic vision for what tattooing could be in a more utopian society that celebrates ornamental arts of all kinds,” says Atkinsun. “I illustrate this beautiful possibility onto people's bodies to turn them into more stunning creatures.”
To see more of Atkinsun's imaginary masterpieces as well as some of his real-life body art, visit his Instagram and website, where you can also find the remainder of his Illuminated Transformations series. He works at Hollowed Ground Body Art Studio in Portland, ME and travels occasionally as well. He can be reached at email@example.com for consultations.