A friend's friend owns a tattoo parlor, and with the weird suggestions that hit him everyday, he fully admit that life is indeed full of surprises. Now with folks who tattoo the American stars and stripes on their body, that is cool… but when one of my fellow countrymen decided to mark his biceps with the "Ashoka Chakra", which is emblem of our nation… it was pretty obvious that things has crossed a line from cool to the bizarre.
Somehow common sense prevailed, and he was convinced to turn that image into a more acceptable 'tiger' as the marks from the prior tattoo would fall in line with this one!
Anyways, as slick as all this is, one must remember that the tattoo ink used is permanent, although, you can find those girlie/ kiddy tattoos that are temporary ones, and which defeat the purpose of getting a tattoo in the first place.
The Rise and Fall of Tattooing
Tattooing has been around for ages. The aborigines in different parts of the world from Polynesia to Africa and to Europe wore tattoos, and was considered normal.
With the advent of Christianity, these aborigines were converted to Western beliefs and their way of life, and thus the practice of tattooing which was considered a taboo according to most Westerners at the time, began to fade away after centuries and centuries of tradition.
Ironically, it was Janis Joplin with tattoos of a wristlet and a small heart of her left breast who staged a renaissance of sorts in order to restore the art of tattoing to its former glory.
Tattoos of today
Although, tattooing has taken a few decades (and now the world has one more thing to thank Joplin for!) to take the world by storm, it has never looked back… with almost every conceivable color on God's green earth being put to use.
These tattoos, can be made of any shape and size, as long as it means something to the person, however, there are boundaries (in the aforementioned example) that one does not cross. Coolness has everything to do with it, of course…
Personally speaking, I find these tribal tattoos real slick but can live to see others riddled with butterflies, hearts, barbed wire and other conventional tattoos that are out in full force today.
Now when it comes to the process involved in getting a tattoo, the ink used in early times were directly sourced from nature along with the hazards involved but in today's world, things have changed alright.
The selection one has in colors and shades are remarkable as there are several dyes and pigments used these days that range from inorganic compounds such as titanium dioxide and iron oxide to carbon black among several other compounds such as azo dyes and dyes made from ash.
Since most tattoo artists mix their own pigments with a carrier (while ensuring that all safety precaution are maintained, without a doubt, there is no tattoo ink that can be regarded as the best.
As for me, getting a tattoo is not necessarily is a problem, but what I'm waiting for is that perfect symbol that describes me and that will never change even when I'm 75… and as for the 'emblem of our nation', it is indeed where it should be and not on the body of an overzealous tattoo freak.