Three hours into getting his beloved town tattooed across his back, Scott Jeffery said the pain overtook the pleasure of having QUEANBEYAN emblazoned across his back.
The proud owner of the now-famous tattoo wasn’t even born in Queanbeyan, but after living there on and off for about 25 years, he says his love for the town is more than skin deep.
“I’m a pretty patriotic kind of bloke,” Scott tells Region Media. “I wanted this tattoo to be big because Queanbeyan is my blood and now it’s on my back.
“I just love Queanbeyan, and the people I’ve grown up with here is what resonates most with me. It’s a close-knit community and we’ve had some pretty big parties over the years,” said Scott, who turned 39 this week.
His children were also born in Queanbeyan, so the tattoo holds sentimental value, too.
But after the marathon four-hour sitting, Scott said his mates were waiting for him at the pub to see his latest tattoo, and their reaction was well worth it.
“I had the boys at the Royal Hotel asking where I was, and after about three hours, it was starting to hurt, so I was asking Mikey (the tattooist from Deep Image Tattooing) how many letters he had left.
“I would never have heard the end of it if I hadn’t had it done in one sitting, and obviously, we needed to get this one right.
“Their reaction was priceless. Some were giving me a bit of stick about it, but they’re mainly the Canberra boys, but the others were loving it and having a good laugh,” he says.
Scott says that after the tattoo image was shared in a few public forums, he noticed the comments were beginning to blow up.
“Some of the comments were pretty negative, but you’ve got to expect that. At the end of the day, it’s all for a bit of fun,” he said.
Scott said he wanted to show his Queanbeyan pride in more ways than just having the town’s postcode of 2620 tattooed on his hand. Tattooist Mikey Keyes, who owns Deep Image Tattooing in the town, said he’s had plenty of people show their pride with the postcode tattoo, but “this was next level. It’s pretty out there,” Mikey said.
Scott’s pride also extends to having large tattoos of Australian icons such as notorious criminal Mark ‘Chopper’ Read, former Prime Minister Bob Hawke and Steve Irwin.
“I’ve got one of Chopper Read on my leg and Steve Irwin holding a crocodile. There’s one of Hawkey with a schooner glass, and I’ve also Marilyn Monroe and Madonna there too.”
But Scott, the owner of scaffolding business Straight Up Scaffolding, is still a mum’s boy at heart and said his mother’s reaction didn’t surprise him.
“I showed my mum and said, ‘what do you reckon?’ She just shook her head and said, ‘son, it’s your body but not in a million years did I think you’d get that done’.
“Nothing surprises my mum anymore,” he says.
Scott said he even had a tattooist from Tuggeranong tell him he’d created a bit of cross-town tattoo rivalry.
“This guy said he’d probably have to get Tuggeranong tattooed on his forehead to try and outdo me,” he laughs.
But Scott said he’s not done yet and has plans and space on his body for at least another two tattoos dedicated to a couple of iconic Queanbeyan buildings.
“Next year, I’m going to get the Top Pub and the Royal Hotel tattooed on me,” he says.
“You think that having Queanbeyan on your back is commitment, wait until you see what I do next.”