I still can't really explain my fascination with this. But part of it:
It makes people more beautiful, I think. To me, anyway. Rather, it makes the beauty I already know they posess more clear, writ upon skin with a heavy hand. Creating beauty is a very noble and appealing thing, and ought to be the goal of more of our actions. Example:
I painted Mibae, 'vanity' upon vix. Vix is sort of bubbly of personality, short, bouncy, giggles more than any sane human who is not a mad scientist bent on world domination should. Mibae means... Hm. Well, literally, it has a character to indicate light/shine/sparkle (derived from the sun-character), and a character representing an eye/show/look. "Look at me! I'm sparkly!" And somehow, it's perfect. I don't personally find vix particularly cute, not because she's ugly(she isn't, at all), just because the 'Look, a twelve year old with breasts!' does very little for me. But the kanji acts as a link between innervix and outervix, makes it easier to see and understand the sparkle of her, makes her breathtakingly lovely.
(And even after the kanji was long worn away - the ink is *very* temporary- there is still a little of it about her; metphorical glitter, that echoes with shiny footsteps in my mind, distant harp music. Sparkle.)
(And yes, I am an etymology-type freak, fond of selecting words for their double meanings, or for meanings that have been long lost. There's an art to it. And I speak Latin, which helps a lot with the double-meaning game in English. Languages are fascinating. Though, for the kanji, I usually have help and just narrow it down after the victim is down to three or four choices)
...And I'm not the only one who thinks so. Four paintings I've done, in kanji designed with the recipient and the meaning of the words in mind. My calligraphy is not great, but it is improving. Two of them, I've done twice. And I think my victims feel it, too, can somehow sense how much the ink becomes them, because, without exception, they all made vague noises about getting the ink tattooed more permanently. Mind you, I don't expect any of them to follow through, but the fact that they did means I got it right, means the ink really conveys *them* and not what I think they are or should be.
That's one hell of an artistic acheivement, and I really want to do it again. Because it's fun, because it makes people beautiful, because it's a communication and a way of telling someone what I think of them (though I doubt anyone understands, but hey), because it is a sort of magic, I suppose.
Saturday, saturday. Hm, I wonder how many of the four I can talk into it?