There is a sense of universality of the tattoo.
Tattoos are found everywhere in the world among different races, cultures and people who follow different sets of beliefs and attitudes. The tattoo has been used probably even before other tools were invented to allow people to interact. And it was not originally used or intended as a form of art, let alone body art paint.
Historically, tattoos were used in tribal communities to denote or signify an aspect of life. It meant that a certain level or phase in one’s life had been reached like attaining puberty or adolescence or engagement in marriage.
The tattoo also announced a variety of other events usually about positive and desirable accomplishments like achieving freedom from slavery or becoming a noble, lord or chieftain or other elevated status. They also indicated victory in battle against other tribes or in some friendly competition involving physical strength.
We can probably say that early tribal communities utilized the tattoo more as a medium of communication through symbolism than as an art form if at all.
Additionally the early tribal communities might have found the tattoo useful to support their language requirements and the imagery created by the tattoo improved their ability to convey thoughts among themselves and other communities as well.
Today there are as many different kinds of tattoo designs as there are people who can visualize them. Tattoo artists can easily create forms that evoke amazing artistic talent and it is just a surprise why they haven’t been recognized in the same category as regular artists.
Did Salvador Dali paint any of his masterpieces on the human body? I doubt it. But a look at current trends in tattoo artistry can make Dali’s works seem like child’s play.
As well, tattoo ink can now be easily applied on and removed from the skin if the idea is for a temporary fashion statement. Angelina Jolie and Dwayne Johnson do this every time.
The flower tattoo is the more exquisite and gentle expression of the tattoo so much that it takes away the connotation of the tattoo as the exclusive property of convicted felons and prisoners in the penitentiary and rehabilitation facilities.
The designs of the flower tattoo are breathtaking as the human skin mysteriously morphs into a natural canvass in living color as life is infused into the images thanks to these incredible tattoo artists.
The cosmetic make-up is basically a tattoo in form and substance the only difference is that it is not involved in facial make-up in the usual sense. It may refer to changes in color and shade of portions of the body like lips, eyelids and brows. The cosmetic make-up can make one refreshingly young and beautiful and not appear to having had a “make-up” or “make-over” on themselves.
The traumatic tattoo is a no-brainer and refers to discoloration of skin pigmentation whether permanent or temporary as a result of abrasive contact with hard objects like asphalt in a road accident resulting in injury.
Another type is the medical tattoo. Like the traumatic tattoo the medical tattoo is another type of skin discoloration that may result from medical procedures that impact on skin color. The traumatic and medical tattoos can hardly be classified for the purpose of body art.
In any event, the tattoo has come around to make a clear statement: that it is not the exclusive attribute of persons living an undeserving and low-quality life whatever this statement may mean. And that it is not a symbol of immorality and irresponsibility either. It is a very high expression of an art form using the human body itself as the canvass for its own expression.