ON GETTING INKED
Tattoos, Tats, Body Art. Recently, this form of body modification has become more popular with supermodels sporting ink and major fashion houses, like Chanel, designing high end temporary tattoos. Whilst the temporary versions allow people to experiment without the lifetime commitment, the popularity of permanent ink is on the rise. I personally love the artistry involved in tattooing, having a little collection going myself, so I thought I’d share my experience and some general tips for those of you who may be considering inking your skin.
I got my first tattoo a few years ago. I’d seen a design on tumblr and began to dream about putting it on my body. A few years and some modifications later, I was sitting in a little tattoo studio listening to the buzz of the tattoo machine and trying desperately to keep still. The pain was less than I imagined but it took longer than I expected. An hour later, I was bandaged up and the whole process was over.
Granted, my first tattoo was a small act of rebellion, but nonetheless I’ve always said that you will know if you’re a tattoo person or not. If not, the buzz of the tattoo machine and the atmosphere of a tattoo studio ought to let you know pretty quickly. I had been fascinated by tattoos from my early teens. I had always loved the artistry and hardwork that went into a quality tattoo, the buzz of the machine excited me and it was really only a matter of time before I was sat in the chair getting inked myself.
Of course, there are many more factors in deciding to get a tattoo but loving your design is pretty high up on the list. If you’re not 100% sold on your design, you’ll probably regret it in the not too distant future. My favourite tattoo was designed specifically for me by an artist in Birmingham’s Modern Body Art. That being said you don’t need a custom design for it to be special to you, my first tattoo wasn’t an original design but I was literally obsessed with the image for years, to the point where my friends were thoroughly sick of hearing me talk about it.
Secondly, you have to be 100% happy with the placement. If you’re even considering putting it elsewhere on your body, you should probably go back to the drawing board. Another thing to consider is how visible your tattoo is - do you want something that is really obvious or something that can be easily hidden? It’s also really important to think about future career prospects - boring but very necessary. The majority of mine are not easily visible, which is my personal preference, but it also means I’m less likely to be hindered by them in the future.
Another issue with placement is the pain factor. Now tattoos are obviously not like getting a relaxing massage or stepping into a nice warm bath- it’s not exactly a pleasant experience. Some parts of the body are going to be very painful, whereas some areas are just going to feel a bit annoying and sore. Sometimes you can just shift your design slightly to avoid some of the pain without completely changing your placement. Any area that is particularly bony or where the skin is thin is going to hurt (like a bitch). However, I always tell myself that the pain is a small price to pay in the grand scheme of things.
Tattoos are a very personal thing and if they are your thing, you shouldn’t let anyone put you off. I’ve had so many people ask me, “what about when you’re old and wrinkly?” “What about on your wedding day?” but they way I see it, even if I fall out of love with the tattoo it’s part of the story isn’t it. They’re a reminder of that time in my life, like a visual diary almost. When I look at my tattoos I remember the reasons behind why I got them, I remember where I was when I got them, who I was with and how I felt about my life at that point and I’ll probably smile. Some people like to have their memories in a photo album, I quite like mine inked on my skin.
What are your thoughts on tattoos?