Those irreplaceable moments in life are remembered by tattoos

It strikes me that I write down this blog. “My story is told by my tattoo” This is a sentence often said by tattooed people.

But one day when I saw my big and small tattoos in the mirror, I suddenly thought that if one day I die or my memory is missing, it is a pity that these stories are buried. It is here that I carefully write down my tattoo story.

It’s the externalization of the intense spiritual conflict in my heart rather than a story.

I now that there are often questions like “what’s the  reasons that you tattoo?” I am invited to answer them. In my opinion, it is because every inner change is only one moment in life. It is irreplaceable and worth recording.

Speaking of “meaning”, the question that whether a tattoo has to be meaningful has always been controversial among tattoo lovers, which is one of the reasons that prompted me to write this article.

As the revolution of Chopin, the moonlight of Beethoven, the source of the power of art to shock people is not only the exquisiteness of the work itself but also because the real artwork is the continuation of the author and even the human spirit.

As long as you are a person who likes tattoos, no matter you are the old tattoo lover who likes to get a dragon tattoo on the left arm and a tiger tattoo on the right arm, or a new tattoo lover without any tattoos, you must be willing to treat tattoos as art.

Both the totems of the tribe warriors in the Stone Age and the traditional Japanese tattoos, like all other artworks, which bear the soul of the human being and are endowed with eternal vitality.

Tattoos do not have to be meaningful, but meaningful tattoos are not just two or three drops of ink on your body.

Therefore, one of the reasons why I write down my tattoo story is to record it, the second is to share my personal experience so that new lovers can take fewer detours; third, this text is also for outsiders, I hope that after reading it It can make everyone have a different understanding of the art of tattoos.

Life is like a dream, rot grass become a firefly

[Firefly-left forearm]

tattooed men

As the name suggests, it is moth + grass, as for the reason will be explained later.

The tattoo is inspired by the game the naughty dog ​​studio “The Last of Us“. It is based on the tattoo of the heroine Ellie’s arm.

the last of us

The background of the game is 20 years after the end of humans caused by Cordyceps infection.

Similar to traditional zombie outbreak works, most humans in the world have become terrible infected persons. A few survivors have established militarily managed survivor camps, and social resources are monopolized by warlords.

Survivors under the high-pressure rule are miserable. To survive, they have to become military running dogs, or do murder and set fire, smuggling, and robbery. The order of human civilization has long ceased to exist.

The heroine Ellie is a 14-year-old girl born after the end of the age. Both her parents are members of the fireflies, a resistance group dedicated to reorganizing the government to restore national order.

Ellie, who lost her parents and grew up against the tissues since she was a child, but she is also not an ordinary girl. She is regarded as the hope of human beings by the fireflies because she has been infected with bacteria but has not mutated. To send Allie away to develop a vaccine, the firefighting leader who was surrounded by the military had to entrust Ellie to the smuggler Joel. The story happened when the two returned to the Firefly headquarters with the fate of humanity.

The last of us, as the title of the god in 2013, although the story background is very cliche? but still has become one of the best games in history due to its unique interactive experience and a strong sense of substitution.

When the player controls the character to play the game, the character is no longer a “tool man” for customs clearance, but a human with flesh and blood. Ellie is such a character with a very prominent personality.

the last of us

When it comes to the tattoo on Ellie ’s arm, the naughty dog ​​official has not given a clear explanation, but the wit players have made a reasonable guess: the large area of ​​the leaves comes from ferns, and the cordyceps that cause the end of the world belongs to the spore creature and is a symbol of Ellie as the last hope of mankind; the giant moth is a symbol of the firefly organization. The moth has been a totem of courage since ancient times.

As for why some people got such a tattoo on his body, the first of course is the heartfelt love for Ellie.

Whenever I control Ellie in the game, I will always unconsciously think of the Clementine of the Walking Dead series, Arya Stark in A Song of Ice and Fire, and even Eloi in the Horizon. I have liked such roles.

These seemingly weak little girls from different time and space have the same personality of love and hatred, and can always burst out amazing power with a weak body at a critical time.

In the last days, the human order was replaced by the law of the jungle. The strong man bullied the weak, and the weak wanted to survive and could only bully the weaker.

Although Allie was born in the last days, she still has a conscience, will help the weak, and will not be afraid of the strong. At the end of the story, she is willing to sacrifice herself in exchange for a vaccine to save humanity.

In the eyes of players like me, the real hope of mankind is not a vaccine, but the tenacity represented by ferns on Ellie, the courage represented by moths, and the determination to resist the end times like Ellie, after all, if you lose these spirits, what is the meaning of survival?

Inspired by the game, he decided to use the moth + fern combination as a tattoo material and was constantly reminding himself to be courageous in all things. When all attempts failed, he did not give up hope.

The last of us is a game that subverts the previous cognition because the second part of the last of us is said to be exclusive to the play station,

Fat baby hug carp

Oniwaka—Right Arm】

carp tattoo

As the name suggests, it is the help of ghosts.

It is based on Japanese folk legend “Oniwaka kills carp”. It is a story that Benkei (also called Oniwaka) with an ugly appearance who is regarded as a monster by folks and kills the big carp in the river.

carp tattoo

Because the fat doll in the picture looks like a colleague of mine, when someone asks me about the meaning of this tattoo, I usually say it is to commemorate the precious friendship between me and SHR (name of my colleague).

tattoo sleeve

However, as a matter of fact, as the first and the only Japanese traditional work in my body, its birth process is tortuous.

Like many Japanese-style lovers, the first time when I was attracted by Japanese-style tattoos is when I saw Miyamoto Musashi, a whole-body work carved by a Taiwan tattoo artist.

I believe that most fans will be impressed by the delicate and delicate matte color and magnificent composition design when they see this work for the first time and the shock when I first saw it is completely beyond words. The work far exceeds my knowledge of tattoos at the time.

It was also from that time that I decided to make up all the history and culture of Japanese tattoos from beginning to end.

traditional Janese Tattoo

The traditional tattooing technique of Japan came from China across the ocean in the Tang and Song Dynasties and reached its peak in the Edo period.

Most of the traditional Japanese tattoos are based on the paintings of a warrior, beauty, and soldiers, especially warrior.

Investigating its roots also comes from the “Romance of Three Kingdoms” and “Water Margin” in the four famous Chinese books that flowed into Japan during the Edo period.

The ukiyo-e painter at that time carried out a series of creations based on the heroic hero of the novel, and the most outstanding representative was the artist of ghost talent-Utagawa Kuniyoshi.

carp tattoo

The vivid tattoo designed by Utagawa’s has given generations of tattooists endless creative inspiration for hundreds of years. It can even be said that without Gechuan Guofang, there will be no traditional Japanese tattoos that we see now. Utagawa is to Ukiyoe, it is just like  Shakespeare to English literature.

After doing some homework, I started to look for Ukiyo-e materials suitable for my tattoo. The first thing I stared at was the famous “The Great Wave of Kanagawa“.

wave tattoo

Although I know that this picture is often tattooed by people, as the first Ukiyo-e painting I saw, I still decided to design it as an armband, and it is similar to the Japanese-style small one with a small circle width of about 5CM. The armbands are different, and I decided to make them bigger.

Japanese tattoo

So how big is it? It’s very impulsive to think of such a big one directly, but after all, it is my love, and it is a decision after doing enough homework, so I won’t regret it.

As for the consequences, it ’s a waste of putting such a soft pattern on the extremely visually strong part of the arm, so don’t learn it if you are inexperienced in this practice. You had better listen to the advice of the tattoo artist and know more about it.

After that, the question is how to connect. If you get a tattoo, you still want to get more tattoos, only 0 times and countless times.

However, after spending more than ten hours to browse thousands of Ukiyo-e paintings, I still found nothing. No one picture makes me feel compelled by others. They are always not such perfect.

Even I once gave up the idea of ​​continuing to do the Ukiyo-e style on my arm. I wanted to do other styles. But now I’m glad that I didn’t put it into action.

Because it didn’t take long for me to find the picture I need at a tattoo artist’s studio, which is different from the common version of Oniwaka killing the carp with a knife.

traditional Japanese Tattoo

The character in the painting is called Oniwaka who is also known as Musashibō Benkei. After he grew up, he served the legendary hero Minamoto no Yoshitsune year after year. In the end, he died to protect Minamoto in a battle.

Musashibō Benkei is often regarded as a symbol of the ultimate spirit of Bushido. As far as I am concerned, Oniwaka, who fights monsters bigger than himself, is just like Ellie in The Last of Us. Although they are still young, they are a well-deserved warrior. The entire right arm tattoo was completed six times in total, nearly 30 hours, which lasted four months.

Although we always say that the hero of the Dragon Slaughter will eventually become an evil dragon, and the teenagers who kill the carp will sacrifice himself, as I said at the beginning, the spirit of the warriors in the story will always be continued in some form, and the goal will be firm. Fighting, you and I are all warriors.

Calf tattoo


As the name suggests, it is “chaos”.

The meaning of this tattoo is probably the most difficult to explain among all my tattoos. I believe that your small head in front of the screen is full of big question marks, and people around you don’t understand why they should pick these two words.

My initial understanding of these two characters can be traced back to the third “The lost symbol” in the trilogy of Dan Brown’s reasoning novels I read in middle school.

Compared with the two famous predecessors Da Vinci Code, Angels and Devil, this one is not inferior in both narrative and writing, but the only thing that I remember is a repetitive Latin proverb: Ordo ab chaos” which means order comes from chaos.”

At that time, I was in the most intense period of thinking in my teens and I was instantly hit by this short sentence.

When a person awakens to self-consciousness, it is often accompanied by repeated and painful doubts and interrogations. I believe that more than one person, like me, has spent this long struggle in quite a long life.

As a teenager, I just rebelled instinctively, against everyone and everything around me, and myself, but I fell into a more chaotic and disorderly vortex time and time again and couldn’t find a way out.

Today, I still believe that the essence of the universe should be chaotic, otherwise why the history of human beings is full of wars and ruins, and the so-called civilization and order are always broken.

When Nietzsche cried and cried while holding the whipped and abused mule, his disappointment in the chaotic nature of human depravity was probably far greater than mercy and mercy. Even when the wise philosopher faces rational and animal choices, his choices are no different from yours.

There is no second god in the world. The name of this god is death; there is only one order in the universe, and its name is chaos.

Thinking about or deconstructing chaos is as futile as seeking longevity, and if you want to establish order, you must go through the chaos.

I think this is probably why this sentence can be rooted in my heart. As the years grow, it becomes more profound and I finally decided to engrave it on my body.

When designing the manuscript, my only requirement for the tattoo artist is to have a symmetrical composition, and to bury a small forbidding “ordo ab chaos” for order in chaos.

[Sunflower and cat-thighs]

Cat tattoos

As the name suggests, it is a sunflower + cat.

[Little Birds-Inside the Arm]

bird tattoo

As the name suggests, it is a birdie.

The two are put together mainly because the meaning of the two tattoos is similar. All to commemorate very important friends.

I got the bird tattoo is when I was joking with my friend and both of us used an animal to describe each other, no matter what the other party chose, they would have that animal tattooed on the body.

The words Seven Sundays under the wing are the hard work of daily work, how I hope that every day of the week is a beautiful Sunday!

Sunflower’s cat is inspired by the series works of  “Tattooed Cat” by Japanese tattoo artist Horitomo.

Because my friend is a cat lover, he has a litter of Garfield in his family and has done a lot of tattoos at the same time, so there is a cat with the tattoo in the theme.

As the most important friend in my school days, she helped me unconditionally more than once when I was isolated and helpless. Therefore, when she was depressed, I wanted to encourage her in this way, so she had a sunflower background design, I hope she will be the girl who shines all over.

forearm tattoo

【Useful tips】

5 suggestions for new tattoo lovers:

  1. About the manuscript

The first reason is that no matter how many times I have said, there will always be some tattoo lovers reaching out and asking for a manuscript.

The reason is very simple. If you reach out to the tattoo artist, the manuscripts are done hardly by the tattooist. What is the difference between copying a tattoo design and robbing others?

If you reach out to tattoo lovers, after reading this article, you will find that their tattoo materials are not blown by the wind, which requires a lot of time and energy.

2. About choosing a tattoo artist

Look at the works! Look at the works! Look at the works! I know that it’s impulsive choice to get a tattoo for the first time for quite a lot of tattoo lovers. So this is the second important tip.

For a new tattoo lover, choosing a good tattoo artist is far more important than choosing a good picture.

The reason is simple. A tattoo artist who is responsible for his work will not accept the customer’s request to destroy the skin even though you give him money.

Therefore, finding the right tattoo artist will greatly reduce the risk of skin damage, as well as a series of additional costs of regret-covering-modification-washing tattoos.

3. About pattern selection

You should often browse excellent tattoo works to improve your aesthetics; communicate with tattoo artists and listen to suggestions from professionals; learn more about the culture behind different tattoo styles and improve your knowledge to make unique tattoos because you have your ideas.

4. About the price

The principle of one cent for one cent is also applicable to the tattoo industry. Under the premise of achieving the standards of the tattoo artist, according to your economic situation, getting the best tattoos.

5. About maintenance

Each tattoo artist will have different maintenance suggestions, but the following items that no drinking, bathing, or watering (sea, river, lake, swimming pool) for a week after tattooing. These are universal, as long as you are a normal human, please strictly follow them cherish skin and cherish life.

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