When you feel deeply about a person, situation, or belief, it’s natural to want to create a lasting work of art that represents your emotions. A tattoo is a great way to show off your pride as a member of the armed forces or to mark a significant triumph in your life. Of course, there are many other reasons to consider a tattoo:
- Remember, pay tribute to, and honor a loved one
- Make a fashion, political, or belief statement
- Represent membership in a close-knit group
- Show healing after trauma, such as covering up a scar
There are many unique reasons to get a tattoo, and the images, words, or symbols chosen often have deep meaning for those who wear them. If you’re considering getting a tattoo, remember that it will be permanent. Avoid results that you regret by thinking carefully about the design you want before committing to the ink.
Why Do You Want the Tattoo?
One of the first recommended steps for choosing a tattoo is to think about your personal reason for the tattoo. Don’t rush into this. Some tattoo artists recommend waiting as long as a year to make sure you really love the idea and want to stick with it. The risk is that you might love a specific design or symbol today but lose interest in a few months. Think about how much you loved certain cartoon figures or heroes during your childhood years; unless those feelings have stuck with you, you’d probably regret having a turtle shell inked all over your back.
Consider Your Job and Community
Next, consider how well your chosen symbol, image, or saying will fit with your current lifestyle. If you work in a bank or some other office job, you’ll probably want to avoid skulls and other aggressive symbols where patrons are likely to see them. Although attitudes toward tattoos are beginning to change, there’s still a long way to go before your body art is accepted in many professional settings.
What Do You Want To Say?
Narrow down your options. When you know what you want to say and you’re comfortable with the idea of owning that tattoo for the rest of your life, it’s time to make the decision. If you decide you want to honor your fellow Marines, you’ll choose something bold and place it near to your heart. If you’ve won a personal battle, you may not need an image quite as obvious; in this case, you may choose something smaller but impactful. A greek symbol of strength, for example, can be just as impactful to you when placed on your upper shoulder or on the inside of your wrist. If you’re struggling to come up with ideas, check out a website of tattoos or the book of examples at the tattoo parlor.
Consult With an Artist
Plan a consultation with the tattoo artist before your actual appointment. The artist can help you decide whether the symbol you’ve chosen is the actual greek symbol of strength or a fake drawn up by an anonymous internet author. The artist can tell if it’s possible to complete the image you have in mind and help you determine the best placement for the art.
It’s Finally Time to Commit
After your research and planning, it’s finally time to get inked! There’s one last thing to bear in mind, however, and that is the fact that getting a tattoo hurts. Fortunately, there are plenty of people walking around as proof that you’ll survive, and you might just want to return for more after your first experience. Some tips for helping you stick through the pain are to use relaxation and deep breathing or bring music to distract yourself. It’s also a good idea to avoid sensitive areas of the body for your first tattoo. By giving yourself time to fully commit to a tattoo, you can end up with lasting, impactful results.