Tattoo… me?????

I love tattoos. I don’t have any tattoos, but I love them. Really. I think that a lot of people have the most gorgeous tattoos. I really admire the way that they use their bodies as canvases for creative works of art. Tattooing is nothing new. People have gotten tattoos since prehistoric times. It was done all over the world: in Europe, Alaska, the Andes, China, Sudan, Russia, Siberia, the Philippines, and many more places. In ancient China, however, tattooing was frowned upon as a barbaric practice. The Chinese weren’t alone in thinking that tattooing was barbaric. Many years later, when Christian missionaries went to Samoa, they tried to stamp out a tradition of very elaborate tattoos (that were applied in five sessions over ten days) because that tradition was “barbaric.” There is now a resurgence of interest in tattooing in Samoa.

So what about tattoos in more recent times? Well, about 50 years ago, tattoos were mostly for sailors and convicts. In fact, tattoos for sailors went back to the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. For an American sailor, sporting a tattoo was both a means of self-expression and a way for that sailor to be identified in case he should be lost at sea or impressed by the British Navy. Those tattoos were fairly plain. I was first made aware of tattoos when I was a small child, watching cartoons. My favorite cartoon character, Popeye, the Sailor Man, had an anchor tattooed on his forearm.

These day, tattoos can be very elaborate works of art. They can be colorful pictures or words or the name of a loved one. There have been refinements in the quality of tattoo inks, and many tattoo artists now have a good deal of training in the fine arts. Attitudes about tattooing have changed. It is now considered an acceptable form of self-expression.

Although I love to see tattoos on other people, I myself am completely untattooed. I don’t see myself having a tattoo. But, if I were to have a tattoo, I would think that it would be fun to have one of my own paintings tattooed on a part of my body that I could… um… admire. That cancels out my back and my rear end. It would be an unusual way for me to advertise my artwork but, well, who knows? Maybe tattoo ads would become popular. Just try not to tattoo an image of a business that is likely to go belly up. You’ll soon find yourself saddled with the name of a dead business for ever and ever and ever. That could be annoying.

A dramatic flower, such as this orangey-brownish sunflower, would make a lovely tattoo. It is an enduring image, as opposed to a name of a business that could go bankrupt or the name of a significant other (you’re not going to enjoy the name of the former true love being part of your body for ever and ever when the romance dies). Anyway, if you choose to get a tattoo, enjoy it and remember to follow the directions of your tattoo artist to avoid risk of infection at the site of the new tattoo.

For more information about the history of tattoos, check out the website within the parentheses: (history of tattoos)

Today’s question: Do you have tattoos? What kinds of images do you have? If you don’t have a tattoo, would you get one and what sort of tattoo would you choose?

3 thoughts on “Tattoo… me?????”

  1. I don't have a tattoo – I don't even have pierced ears. I once wrote a blog post about tattoos, and a woman who had tattoos of Dr. Seuss characters on her arms and legs. That would be the highest form of happiness for an author, I think – to have his or her characters tattooed on someone.

  2. Well, my religion forbids the permanent tattoo. Which probably shades my impressions of same.
    I also watch how those folks who had tattoos inserted into their dermis years ago now "sport" the most grotesque remains of the idea.

  3. yes i have a tattoo 🙂 a sentence on my left upperarm saying "choose to be me"
    guess the words tell you, what it means to me. long struggle of finding myself and being myself. and yes i would love to have more tattoos.
    one should be a heartline with the name of my son included

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