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Just a small-town girl…

Jess, the girl next door with a wild side, grew up in the heart of central Ohio. And, for her, there's no place like home.

You know, a lot of people make fun of Ohio, but it's by far my favorite place in the world.

But Jess isn't your typical girl-next-door. You won’t catch her daydreaming by the window, but you will catch her cruisin the country on her Harley.

Jess with motorcycle overlooking the mountainside
It's so funny seeing people's faces light up when they find out I ride motorcycles.

They look at me like I am some kind of crazy adventurer or thrill seeker, and that's not the case at all.

Her small-town girl persona is more about her being a self-described homebody.

I love being home with my family and my friends. Taking motorcycle trips is like the cherry on top of the cake of traveling for a living. But at the end of the day I'm so excited to just go home.

One of her recent tattoos, done by John Himmelstein at Hart & Huntington Orlando, is a nod to her passion for motorcycles.

I own and ride a Harley Davidson Road Glide, so I got a tattoo mimicking the cartoon character Appa from Avatar. Appa is the Animal Guide for Avatar Aang in the cartoon “Avatar The Last Airbender.” When I came back home to Ohio after living in Florida for the winter months, I knew I would be selling my motorcycle because I purchased a newer Harley Davidson Road Glide. So, the tattoo was really in honor of the Harley that made me fall in love with touring bikes.


As a lone traveler, Jess forged a close bond with the motorcycle that she refers to as “him.” He took her across the country and she wanted a tattoo that paid tribute to their connection and adventures on the open road.

Jess' tattoo

The tattoo design depicts the character Appa, who is inside, breaking the barriers of a tarot card. The card's name is The Guide because the character's name is the spirit guide to the avatar. My bike also feels like my spirit guide, so I got an illustrative tattoo with simple line work and simple hatching for shading, and it's beautiful.

Because Appa is a cartoon character, it doesn't have many realistic qualities, but it does have specific proportions and textures that could make or break it.

John nailed it. It came down to his line work and interpretation, which is exactly how I envisioned the tattoo.

I wanted it to be timeless and realistic but still a cartoon character. He hit the ball out of the park! It was perfect!

I think I cried! I just felt so relieved that I finally had my soul bike on my body. Even though the tattoo itself isn’t a motorcycle, the meaning is profound.

And, with that Jess finally had the closure she needed to sell her beloved motorcycle.

I got so emotional about it. I was finally able to sell that motorcycle because while it’s a machine, all of my memories and all the love I have for that Harley will forever be with me because of that tattoo.

Jess credits the remarkable creativity and stunning artistry of her Appa tattoo to John, a master of the craft. Having been an avid follower of his Instagram, Jess already knew the art would be incredible, but she didn't expect her experience at Hart & Huntington Orlando to be so serene, a vibe she seeks when getting a tattoo.

For me getting a tattoo is a therapeutic process. I really don't like talking. It’s the same as getting a massage. I'm always like, 'Please don't talk to me.' Just let me enjoy the process. I was able to do that because John was so focused and took his time. He was working with the reference a lot, which made me feel really good.

Luckily for Jess, she could slip into serenity even at one of the world's busiest tattoo shops.

I felt like I was in a fish tank! Every time I looked up, hundreds of people were standing outside just watching, looking in, and coming in to check out the merch!

Although she was not entirely surprised by the onlookers. H&H Orlando’s fame preceded itself, even for Jess, long before she was sitting in John's chair.

I actually heard about Hart and Huntington through my very good friend and colleague Blockhead. I come to Florida often. Blockhead and I have done creative work and motorcycle content together. So when I started noticing him going to H&H, I was like, 'Tell me about this because H&H is a really cool-looking place.’

Jess finally got the chance to visit Hart & Huntington Orlando for herself in January of 2023.

It is the coolest shop! I love how fast-paced it is and how it is always busy. I love the merch, the vibe, the motorcycles, you know everything about it! My first impression was. 'Holy crap, this is cool!'

Jess at H&H Orlando

The CityWalk location is impressive in its own right,  but the welcoming atmosphere and energy really caught Jess off guard.

My favorite thing about the shop is how welcome I felt when I walked in.

I just felt the energy! People are genuinely excited to see you and hear your ideas. I think that's probably the most important thing as a customer—feeling like you're not bothering anyone or that your idea isn't stupid.

With Jess's seasoned eye for tattoos and her knack for artistry, her praise for H&H isn't just a compliment—it's a full-throttle endorsement.

I vividly remember getting my first tattoo at 18. I was chomping at the bit because I am an artist. I thought, 'Look at me! Look at me! I am an artist wearing this art!'

Jess laughs, but she very quickly realized that being a tattoo artist meant she’d be drawing for other people, not herself.

So, I went down a completely different route—a more traditional art career–graphic design.

Despite her career taking her on a different artistic journey, Jess is captivated by the storytelling magic of tattoos.

I fell in love with the fact that we are unique human beings who can display the things we are passionate about on our bodies. This revolution came to me in my early 20s and carried into my 30s. I can get some of the most beautiful tattoo work in the world and love it. I can get a tattoo in a dive bar in Tampa and love it just as much because it's about the memory and the story and not so much about being perfect.

Ready to turn your stories into art? Set up your consultation at H&H and get inked!

If you want an up-close look at Jess's tattoo experience at H&H and her motorcycle adventures, check out this YouTube video.