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Tattoo Or Not To Tattoo... The

2633 words - 11 pages

Tattoo or not to Tattoo: An informative guide to the history, selection, care, and removal of skin art.Tattoo or not to Tattoo Tattoos or skin art as it is commonly called, seems to be the latest fashion trend today. Everywhere you look someone else is getting inked, be it could be the college student, the young mom next door, or the executive in his business suit. The history, selection, safety , and care along with some removal methods are not always obvious nor is a non-permanent alternative. All these things and more will be revealed in a few short moments. The history of skin arts beginnings are some what unclear. Some people like tattoo artist Erik Reime think that it goes back to biblical times, in fact it could be conceived that GOD created the first tattoo when he put "the mark upon Cain" (3). For others it originated n Egypt or as V. Wageman reviews in Victoria Lautmans book The New Tattoo the first tattoo may have come about when "some stone age klutz fell down near a hearth[and] found charcoal embedded in his flesh"(8). through out history we can see that tattoos have served a variety of purposes. They have been the distinguishing mark of a slave or a ruler, they were and still are used in prisons and more recently have become a means of personal expression. In the eighteenth century Capt. James Cook brought back to England some tattooed South Sea islanders. Cooks seamen were among the first westerners to have full body tattoos. From there tattoos progressed to the US where slaves were branded with their owners name or some other distinguishing mark. In a web page written and maintained by Robert Birkins we can see how skin art was also used in the prison camps of the former soviet union where a complex language was developed using tattoos as symbols. Such languages have been studied by specialists in hopes of cutting crime rates in the USSR. Some examples of prison tattoos are: Insert From there we progress to modern day, where skin art has become an avenue of self expression. In our generation the tattoo is seen more as who you are than as a political statement or "brand". Tattoo's today are about experiences, feelings, and a permanent sense of self-worth and pride. The selection of your skin art is as important as the selection of the artist that applies it and of the care that will later be needed to keep it beautiful. One should always be sure that the design is something that you have a love or passion for, whether you decide on "flash" (ready made artwork that is usually found on the salon walls or in their portfolios) or have an original design, the art you have applied will be with you always and like it or not the artwork you pick will determine the way some people view you. The traditional way to have a tattoo is of course with needles and ink. There is nothing like the pure and natural adrenaline rush that occurs when you sit in the tattoo artists chair and listen while the high pitched...

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