Should tattoos hold meaning?

“This piece means so much to me because-”

I’m sure we’ve all heard it a million times over. Most people get tattoos because they want to commemorate a special and/or impactful time in their lives. A permanent reminder such as a name or a portrait or even something as minimal as an inside joke shared with a special person. It needs to mean something because if you get something just because “It looks cool.” you’ll eventually grow to regret this decision.

Now let me present you with a conflicting idea…

Tattoo artists are precisely that; artists. Most people entering a tattoo shop already have what they want in a piece of paper, or an image or even their mind to let the artists design along strict guidelines. But being artists they also have their own designed ideas from which you may choose one (or more) to get inked if you’d like. I follow many tattoo artists on Instagram and the amazing works of art that I see on a daily basis never cease to amaze me. Some sketches I would even get without a second thought simply because I admire the art aspect of it, not because it necessarily means anything to me. And I’m not alone. Thousands, if not millions of people do this as well. And I guess you could say something like: “Well that means something to you because you like the art at much.”

And if that’s the case, are there really tattoos that don’t hold any meaning (Given that you were fully conscious at the time and not on your 20th shot of tequila when you decided it’d be a good idea to get a tattoo)?

Image Citation- Howland, Daniel. White and Gold? Digital image. New York Daily News. N.p., 1 Mar. 15. Web.

If you enjoyed this and would like to hear more on the matter I have a podcast titled “Us Can Do It” on iTunes and SoundCloud with Jose Juan De La Vega and Kathleen Reyes where we discussed this topic along with others on our 8th episode. Feel free to check it out and let us know your thoughts.