Saturday, April 16, 2011, was the day I got my first tattoo (!!!)
I’ve always contemplated on getting inked since college. What held me back though was my fickle-minded self in choosing an appropriate design, plus I wasn’t ready. I’ve even pondered on getting skulls inked on me since I had a strange affinity to them in the past. Whew! I’ve also considered a number of floral patterns and fairies to connote something like, the beauty of freedom, as well as favorite quotes from books, and well, maybe a thunderbolt.
Then, I started researching on symbols, and I somehow took on a liking to the ancient alibata or baybayin ones. I know this is a common tattoo design amongst us Filipinos, but despite my Oriental heritage, I take so much pride in being Pinoy, that is why I knew that I wanted my first tattoo to boast of my Filipino roots.
I pretty much had my first tattoo design in mind for a year and a half. I also listed some other tattoo ideas that I wanted for the future. I guess it was all about the proper timing, and getting my parents’ approval because of course, I wouldn’t want them to flip out or anything. My mum actually brought up the topic since, surprisingly, she wanted to be inked as well! And seeing it as an opportunity, I asked her if it would be alright for me to get a tattoo. Her answer? “Why not? It’s art!”
So, here’s my first tattoo! Tadaaaaa!
It’s an amalgamation of the words “Sining” (Art) and “Tapang” (Courage) tattooed on my left wrist. Okay, it was a good thing that the tattoo artist corrected my wording, or else I would’ve ended up with only the words “Sine” and “Tapa” (Movie and Beef!!!) inked on my wrist forever! He’s an alibata expert, so I trust that he knows his stuff.
Emao Clemen stenciling my tattoo
I designed my tattoo in such a way that the words “Sining” and “Tapang” are joined and held together by the “-ng” they both end with. I know that in the past few years, I have been so afraid to pursue my passions because of a number of things. And it is because of this reason that I had these words tattooed on my wrist as a personal reminder to always pursue my passions without fear.
I am still getting used to the fact that I have a tattoo. It’s a great big deal for me, because it’s something I’ve always wanted to have, but I was also afraid to get one. I am also secretly thinking of having more done (hi, mum) , since there are a number of philosophies that I want to have bounded and imprinted on my body. As a matter of fact, I have the designs all mapped out. I don’t want to splurge on the details, but I’m looking forward to having a Hebrew quotation tattooed on my right inner ankle, one of Nietzsche’s philosophies on the side of my body, and a Sak Yant on my back.
Before and After photos
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I think that tattoos are beautiful works of art that speak of one’s unique soul and personality. It’s a reflection of the beliefs you stand for, and the philosophies that guide you in becoming the person you are meant to be. It’s definitely something I will never regret having.