Posts tagged tattoos
Posts tagged tattoos
Hard at work or hardly working?
Seth Graham, buffalo ny. @Hiddendoorways
So I’m looking at my tattoos and I start thinking. I think they look cool. But an onlooker might think they are gross, odd, cool, interesting… Any number of opinions. But if you are a person who examines things with opinion set aside you could make observations.
One could observe that my tattoos, for example are comprised of less words and more images. There are a lot of animals. Two patterns emerge.
If an observer could not read English, the small phrases and letters would not be readable. Perhaps interpreted as text or letters, but it is possible the observer could confuse lines of complicated and ornate text with designs or another kind of visual pattern if say, this observation is being done by a person who has never seen the language in the tattoo in print or is unaware the letters are in fact letters at all. Suddenly even written record of the meaning is lost.
Then I wonder what would happen if someone were to see my tattoos from an even more removed vantage point. Someone who is unaware of why tattoos are done in western culture And doesn’t know that on a lot of the planet, I’d venture to say most, tattooing is something done for aesthetics freely. For example, if I want a tattoo of a duck because I like ducks I may have a tattoo of a duck. If I can afford one I buy it, if I can apply it I do, I trade for it… Basically if you want a tattoo of something in this world you can just get it. You don’t need to earn a tattoo, unless you subscribe to a reason to; you can obtain one just because. Now consider this:
If a person could look at me and not know the reason I am tattooed or context, not know the meanings of my word tattoos, or that the letters are even letters, not know that I am able to just get one whenever of whatever at my discretion in this society and that the content of the tattoos is comprised of my interests opinions and other personal aesthetic, and not anything else, if a person could see my tattoos from that point of view what would they think?
Their opinions may come from different angles but if they can notice the patterns they could infer. They could speculate why I have a horse head on my hand. But they couldn’t know why or if it was significant or if I had it applied because I liked horses or just liked the picture. They could speculate all sorts of erroneous ideas about societal reasoning and ideas of meaning to me or others.
They could literally invent reasons and do what humans tend to so so well and find patterns that don’t exist. They could over analyze and obscure simple concepts into a tapestry of misinformation. My whole identity would be different. Perhaps I’d be important, dangerous, loathsome, or any of the other things tattoos made the people of past civilizations. Then I realized some things:
One: if the world of humans ends and we all die forever, and some of us mummify or fossilize we are going to confuse the fuck out of the next sentient being with an iq over 70 that lands here and decides to dig. Like really blow their minds, granted they understand skin and that the marks were applied (hopefully if they can travel through deep space the latter is not an issue). They’ll see these upright apes, some tattoo less and others covered fully in markings of all types. Representations of things, animals, places, words, everything we get tattooed all for the interpretation. It’s gonna be nuts. Get ready year 3943.
Two: this weed is bomb
Three: over thinking.
It’s Seth’s online tattooing portfolio. Check it out, ya’ll.
Seth Graham tattooer shirts, $15 in person or $20 shipped within the US. Screen printed on various colors, SM-XL. Message me for one.
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