Hands up, how many of you out there have one of those Chinese symbol tattoos? Let’s be honest here. If however, you are not the proud owner of some form of ridiculous, yet highly philosophical, kinda mystical-looking thing protruding from your lower backside, in the shape of a Chinese symbol tattoo, you’re probably not old enough to know the joy of the good old days of Saturday morning’s KTV Power Edition or the “landline telephone”. But fear ye not youngness’, for you too are included in some or other kind of Tattoo Fads.
The fact is that there has always been some style of tattoo, happily accompanying its fleshy hosts through the ages. And as far as I can tell, there always will be. I like to think of it as a more accurate form of carbon dating if you’d like. It is however rather peculiar to note just how salmon-like we “individualists” are when it comes to our choice of tattoos. A very wise young man and I believe it was Bart Simpson, once said that when saying that are all special, we are merely just using a kinder way of saying that no one in fact is. Now please don’t get me wrong. I am not saying that we are all mindless robots with no minds of our own. No, no. I am simply saying that sometimes, we can be mindless robots. I say this because as both a tattoo aficionado and shop owner, I have seen come and go the various tattoo trends over the years and so started to question their purpose and craze in the industry, not to mention my own! Am I an artist? Or am I a photocopy machine? Luckily our shop is now on such a level where we can choose the art we want to do. In defence of the current social tattoo trend, I must admit that they can be and in fact are almost always a bit more challenging and for what it’s worth, artistic than their Chinese predecessors.
But how about we change this somewhat negative and yes, the sometimes slightly snobbish paradigm we have created? If we are truly artists, should we not ask ourselves, just how amazing we can make this dissolving, disintegrating feather tattoo, rather than loathe the design? As an artist, is it not at all important that someone has chosen YOU, to engrave a thought or belief, no matter how absurd or utterly pointless, into their flesh? It is after all a very personal experience is it not? And who are we to say that the phrase we are tattooing is all bullshit? It’s Interesting to note that the choice of tattoo hardly differs between a twenty-year-old girl and a fifty-year-old woman.
As for our so-called individualism? Well, we are all special. Just as special as the guy in the cubicle next to yours, also trying to fit into that extra small pair of skinny jeans. But hey, I suppose that we are all just individualists of the current age and culture, even though that culture happened a mere sixty-three years ago?
Sailors, geckos, Chinese symbols, star signs, feathers and watercolour roses, even the old’ tribal. I guess at the end of the day, they tell the story of the time we lived in, the way we thought and the stupid things we do when drunk. Thus, do not hide the ancient philosophy obtruding out from your butt crack, but rather embrace it! Not only show it but share your but- crack- power with the rest of the world. And when you’re done? Come see us. We’ll fix it up in a jiffy.