The tattooed men in Rhys’ life: December


December: Colin Rigley, photographer, cat herder, senior staff writer at New Times

Our second photo shoot, featuring Colin clad in short shorts and a wife beater, felt completely different from the first shoot with Ryan. In the first place, we weren’t in public. I had asked all my Facebook friends if any of them had access to a sexy fainting couch and my buddy Mary Meserve-Miller almost instantly messaged me a photo of her own leopard print fainting couch, which was perfect for Colin’s shoot.

Also, Colin was a lot more nervous than Ryan, and incredibly embarrassed by what we were about to do. He’s much more comfortable behind the camera than lounging provocatively on a leopard print fainting couch in shorts he usually reserves for a silly Halloween costume.

Colin has three different sets of tattoos: a blue infinite symbol near his collarbone, symbols from The Standard Model of particle physics on his forearm, and a sleeve with a heart at the top and rose of Sharon flowers and vines trailing down from it. The latter part was done by Jillian Wefald of Traditional Tattoo in San Luis Obispo (who also did my tattoo), and is incredibly vibrant. I knew that it would photograph well.

Colin had to set up the tripod and camera, instruct me on the finer points of making sure the camera was focused on his face in each shot, and then hitting the shutter. I tried to stay out of his way during the set-up phase, then struggled to make sure his face remained in focus, while offering instructions like “purse your lips,” “your arm is blocking your face,” and “try kicking your feet in the air for this one.” It was tense and we were both impatient to be done, but ultimately we were both pleased with the results. I didn’t envy him the task of having to edit his own photo, but he decided to have fun with it. When we noticed there was a photograph in the background, Colin decided to Photoshop Rhys’ face into the image as a nice little Easter egg.


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