LOS ANGELES, UNITED STATES (REUTERS) - Tattoo artist Nate Siggard inks audio soundwaves onto people's skin, allowing them to listen to a favorite piece of music or a loved one's voice any time via a smartphone app.
He came up with the concept of audible body art after some of his friends requested tattoos of the audio waveform of an Elton John song.
"As they were leaving after their appointment, my girlfriend Juliana suggested, wouldn't it be cool if we could play that sound back? And I realised that I could actually make that possible. So I built an example for them to prove that it would work and once I realised that it did, I had the tattoo myself and so I tattooed Juliana saying 'I love you' and our daughter on my leg," said Siggard.
Soundwave Tattoos work with a companion smartphone app.
People record or upload a memorable piece of audio and the app generates a waveform image that can be taken to a trained tattoo artist to be permanently inked on the body.
After the tattoo is done, a photograph of it is uploaded to the app, to be matched to the audio file.
"We're using image recognition inside the app to notice when it's looking at the tattoo and it plays the sound of the tattoo back on top of itself," said Siggard.
Siggard's friend Josh Gallner recently lost his father to cancer.
He requested a Soundwave Tattoo as a permanent reminder of his dad's advice on surviving.
Siggard says the app will be ready for release in June 2017 and licensed artist will be operating in locations around the world, bringing a new dimension to tattoos.