Ink it through

Skyler Black

Oh man, it’s an opinionated outlook on getting tattoos. This should be totally original and not cliche at all! I’m here to tell the world how getting tattoos has sincerely changed my life. Not in that corny life changing way like buying a blender so you can eat everything in smoothie form. But in a real way. In an emotional and intellectual way.

Getting a tattoo isn’t the same as just buying something nice for yourself because it’s “treat yo’ self” day. Getting a tattoo is an emotional commitment to a piece of art that will be on your body for the rest of your life, in most cases. I have received four wonderful works of art on my body in my short time on this earth and each one represents something important to my life. While I strongly believe that you can do whatever you want to with your body, tattoos need – I’ll say it again, need – to be thought out clearly and for a good amount of time. I cannot tell you how many tattoos that I have seen on people that mean something that doesn’t pertain to them anymore. I’m not just talking about names of ex lovers but I’m talking about flags, bands, words, the list is endless.

Over the last four years, I have spent upwards of $600 for people that I barely know to permanently ink images onto my body. I was only 18 when I received my first tattoo. Now, as a 22-year-old college student, with four tattoos, I can say that I have no regrets getting them. The process of getting a quality tattoo is longer than most would expect. You have to come up with an idea, find the right artist for you, make an appointment and finally sit through the experience for around one hour.

Recently, I received another tattoo on my calf which took three hours. This tattoo was something that I had been thinking about for around six months and had been looking for an artist that I could trust for another two weeks. So I’ll say it again, it is necessary to think the tattoo through. There is a massive difference between a “good” tattoo artist and a “professional” tattoo artist. Any tattoo, no matter how well thought out it is, can be bad if the artist is bad.

Before I got any of my tattoos, I was not the type of person that would even think of getting something permanently etched into my body. I was closed minded to the “ink lyfe” and was terrified of marking myself. But as time went on, I found that I could make an emotional connection with tattoos. This mark that lasts a lifetime with a major connection to your body and soul. That can display what you can’t really say in words.

Tattoos have profoundly impacted my life and have added something important to it. These additions to my body aren’t just things that I think look good, but things that mean something to me. That represent something important that has happened in my life or my view of life itself. In my not so humble opinion, tattoos are an extension of yourself. They bring out the inner beliefs, thoughts, and loves of the wearer. Ink can be used as a form of expression just as well as painting, writing, singing and dancing. But if you ever think about getting tattoo, please for your future think it through.

Originally published on Reflector Community