• John L Painter


Since getting stage two of my Finnish commemorative tattoos, I have had some good questions asked both about the owl (‘sielulintu’ and homage to my home town) and now sisu, the term used to describe the Finnish ‘spirit’.

Instrumental for me taking some of that spirit to a more personal place was Gary Munkacsi who I mentioned before, who’s craftsmanship and positive spirit he puts into his work comes across in the tattoo work he did for me. The photo here is Gary hard a work.

The concept of sisu can be a bit hard to wrap ones head around or at least it was for me, but over years it has sunk in, very generally it’s a description of how the Finnish people face personal challenges with valor, and stoic determination, and the internal strength and capacity that enables one to move forward when they've reached the end of their mental and physical resources.

Over the years, knowing the meaning of sisu and sielulintu was important to my focus and helping me getting through some tough times.

#tattoo #Finnish #Sisu #Sielulintu


​© 2020 by John L. Painter

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