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People like to use the term “ruin” or “sin” when the topic of tattoos comes up. They can think of tattoos as unprofessional or “going against religion.” In reality, it’s a permanent ink that goes on your body and stays with you. Unfortunately, professional settings ask people to cover up their tattoos, and sometimes, they can’t control that rule. However, as the years go by, more and more jobs have been accepting tattoos, and it’s become normalized to have them, which is a good sign. Moreover, one common concept in all aspects of getting a tattoo is that it’s a form of art. Different reasonings can impact someone’s decisions, but it’s art in the idea of expression. 

Decisions are personal for each individual that is getting a tattoo. Some get it because it’s fun, and they enjoy it without the tattoo having much meaning. For example, the user in this TikTok put his tattoo there because he used to draw it with eyeliner when he was younger. But he put it there just for fun. Some get tattoos that reflect their love for a type of media, like movies, tv shows, fandoms, etc. Personally, many of my friends got them from tv shows they love. 

But some people get tattoos that reflect their life journeys. I will use my experience as an example. A year ago, a quote changed my perspective on my life: “You Define You.” For five months, I wrote in my journal why I wanted a tattoo of that quote and why that quote meant so much to me. As a side note, I wanted to make sure this was something I wanted and that I was fully aware it would be permanent on my body. But I know others who get it without having a five-month-long consideration, and I think it’s cool. I finally got my tattoo in April of 2022 and was really happy about my decision. Every time I look at my tattoo, I’m reminded of how I should continue with life from that quote. Some individuals get tattoos for much deeper meanings. For example, this TikTok explains the different types of tattoos and how it represents each aspect of someone going through something that impacted their life and how they came out strong on the other side. Overall, Tattoos are forms of art that people put on their bodies to paint their best selves. The best versions of themselves are what they think is best, not what others perceive. Tattoos have been viewed as negative for many years, but that only makes assumptions about others based on their tattoos. I am glad that they are now being normalized as a form of art and not a condition of negativity.

Rose O'Connor

Emmanuel '24

I am class of 2024 at Emmanuel College. I major in Communication and Media studies. I have an art commissions account where I provide clients with their requested art.