By Chelsea Bailey, Assistant Features Editor —
The first annual Literary Ink convention brings the worlds of Harry Potter and tattooing together on March 9-11 at the Doubletree Hotel in downtown Chattanooga.
Organized by Main Line Ink and Griffin Salve, the convention will be “three days of magic bring brought to Chattanooga,” said Jennifer Edge, tattoo artist and co-owner of Main Line Ink.
With a long history with Harry Potter and a sleeve dedicated to the characters from the beloved books, Edge and her team have been working hard for 14 months to bring the wizarding world to the Chattanooga community.
When searching for a theme for the convention to bring people together, there seemed no more natural a fit than Harry Potter
“The big thing about Harry Potter is that it’s about a group coming together to make things happen. I love the way J.K. Rowling showed you how to go through a lot of difficulty,” said Edge. “Her writing and what she did with that series made a lot more people feel like there was a place for them.”
Edge has watched fellow artist develop their own styles, creating a demand for more personalized tattoos, including pop culture-inspired pieces.
“You’ve got a lot more artists that are tattooing instead of folks who are trained how to do flash off the wall, so you’re actually finding artists that are doing their own style of work,” said Edge. “t just opens a lot of doors because artists who are into things like movies and pop culture, and that’s what artists are starting to tattoo.”
Libby Gillies, a UTC senior from Huntsville, Alabama, grew up watching Harry Potter and has considered a tattoo in honor of the series.
“The deathly hallows would be pretty cool,” said Gilles. “Harry Potter has been a big part of people’s lives. I mean I cried in the last movie solely because it was over.”
The market for this type of convention goes far beyond the Chattanooga area, as Edge has watched tickets being sold to patrons from all over the country.
“There are people coming from California, we’ve seen tickets from Pennsylvania, Florida, California, Virginia, Ohio – folks are coming from everywhere,” said Edge.
There is no shortage of activities at this three day Harry Potter extravaganza. Patrons can be tattooed by one of 72 artists flying in, purchase art from vendors across the country, compete in a scavenger hunt for a $500 Main Line Ink gift certificate and more.
For more information about Literary Ink, visit https://www.literaryink.co.