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Tattoo: An Esoression, An Art, An Outlook

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  • Pages: 5
  • Word count: 1093
  • Category: Body

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            To understand and appreciate the reason why a tattoo has evolved into being:  a means of expression; another form of art; and, another way to look at life in modern times.


A tattoo is a personal choice of an individual that does not have to merit bias and pre-judgment of another person.

I.         A tattoo is the pigmentation of the skin, with ink that is punctured through a needle, as applied on the surface of the skin, which generally becomes permanent.

II         Its history says that:  “the word, tattoo originates from the Tahitian word tattau, which means “to mark” ……….[but] the earliest known evidence of tattooing dates back to markings found on the skin of the Iceman, a mummified human body that dates as far back as 3300 B.C.  More widely recognized are tattoos found on Egyptian and Nubian mummies dating from about 2000 B.C. (“What Are Tattoos And Where Did They Originate”, 2007)

III.      As a means of body modification, a tattoo is acquired by so many different kinds of individuals for so many reasons, for so many purposes, in so many designs in different parts of one body – all through the history of mankind.


  1. There are so many health and safety and psychological and personal considerations that an individual has to evaluate before embarking on acquiring a tattoo.
  2. The psychological part considers that a tattoo is permanent. Whatever an individual decides to tattoo (an art design or a text inscription) on whatever part of his or her body will be there forever.    Of course there is also a method of tattoo removal, but that is another series of considerations and evaluations too.
  3. The personal consideration will look into the economics part of the process. There will be a balance between getting it cheap because of one’s financial resources and compromise on the health and safety aspect – or, getting a tattoo at the right cost for the very well established criteria of the facility and the tattoo shop/artist.
  4. The health factor requires a thorough and honest analysis. A tattoo is considerably a wound – it being a process of puncturing the skin.  An individual must thoroughly consider his allergies, his medical history, his immunizations, his health care facilities/benefits that would give him help in case of unforeseen repercussions of acquiring a tattoo – which will safeguard himself from diseases and infections.
  5. Considering the safety aspect of acquiring a tattoo looks into the facility where the tattoo will be acquired. A certified, licensed tattoo artist must be a premium criteria to consider, together with highly hygienic and well maintained clinic/studio and its equipments and that it meets all the health and government standards.


  1. The procedure of applying a tattoo may be done either manually or through a machine. The needle punctures approximately 3 millimeters into the skin.  It may hurt much or little depending on the physical endurance of an individual.  And of course, it is expected that there will be bleeding that will transpire.
  2. The procedures are as follows: “The tattoo artist will first wash his or her hands with a germicidal soap.  The to-be-tattooed area on your body will be cleaned and disinfected.  The tattoo artist will put on clean, fresh gloves (and possibly a surgical mask).   The tattoo artist will explain the sterilization procedure to you and open up the single-use, sterilized equipment (such as needles, etc.).   Using the tattoo machine (with a sterile, single-use needle attached), the tattoo artist will begin drawing an outline of the tattoo under your skin.  The outline will be cleaned with antiseptic soap and water.  Sterile, thicker needles will be installed on the tattoo machine, and the tattoo artist will start shading the design. After cleaning the area again, color will be injected.  Any blood will be removed by a sterile, disposable cloth or towel.  When finished, the area, now sporting a finished tattoo, will be cleaned once again and a bandage will be applied.”  (Kottenhahn, Van Vranken, 2006)
  3. It is very critical to avoid all possible and unforeseen dangers of infections in acquiring a tattoo that makes after care very important.  The studio/clinic will give instructions and must be diligently followed:  from antiseptics; to antibiotics; to cleansing; to sanitation procedures.


III.      The choice to acquire a tattoo has initially meant to signify distinctiveness and commitment – like, being part of a tribe or a cause, or a group.  The reason for a tattoo has evolved into categorically almost the same meaning, and yet, to a wider scope.

  1. As an art form, it has become a fashion statement. Beginning with the cosmetic purpose (from permanent eyebrows, to lip colours, etc), a tattoo for this purpose, especially a woman, saves her time in putting on make up.  To some teenage girls, it is simply the “call of the times”.
  2. As a total expression or outlook of life, individuals of modern times acquire a tattoo to silently express independence, freedom, being upbeat and unique. It is not really rebellion it is demonstrating an ability to freely choose an act that he stands responsible for.

I.         There is a tattoo and there is a tattoo – which means, there are various ways to look and understand what a tattoo is on an individual basis.  There is really no need to be biased and pre-judge a person because of a tattoo.  Whatever limitations society might impose on individuals that sport a tattoo (like some employment opportunities do not cater to individuals with a tattoo), there is a need to establish detailed criteria.  And of course, not all individuals with a tattoo must be immediately equated with negative impressions.

  1. “Whichever way you look, you will know at least one person with a tattoo. This is no way proves the decadence of modern culture or that people have lost their own judgmental power and have become blind followers of a leader. It is a fact that tattoos have grown massively despite the social stigma it had always attracted in the past. Over the centuries, instead of becoming an extinct practice, tattoos have gained in popularity – which only goes to prove that it has stood the test of time and is here to stay.” (“Psychology and Tattoos”, 2007)


“What Are Tattoos And Where Did They Originate”.  2007.


Kottenhahn, R., MD, Van Vranken, M., MD.  “Tattoos”.  2006.


“Psychology and Tattoos”.  2007.  Tattoo.ology.


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