How has tattooing become popularized?
In France, 29% of people under 35 have tattoos (or have already tattooed) compared to only 14% of people over 35 years old. Women are more likely to have tattoos than men: 20% compared to 16%.
In 2018, a survey by Ifop showed that one in five people in France (both men and women, all social classes alike) had or had previously had a tattoo. Last November, the Paris Tattoo Astronomy Gathering brought together over 500 tattoo artists from around the world, there are also some high-quality sponsors in the tattoo industry, including tattoo machine, tattoo accessories, etc. Attracting 15,000 people.
If its success is undeniable, this practice cannot be simplified to fashion, as it goes back to prehistoric times. Depending on the era and culture, tattoos can be a sign of belonging to a group, an aesthetic or symbolic choice. [...] In Western societies, until the 1990s, this mainly consisted of a male and homosexual-oriented pop culture meant to affirm macho energy. It has since democratized.
Why are tattoos often invisible?
Because of the choice of tattooers to conceal them in more discreet places (67%), that is to say, certain parts of the body that make the tattoo easily hide under clothes but also show in their leisure time: arms, thighs, chest and back. However, more visible areas are becoming increasingly popular, as tattoo artist Tin-Tin says: "Today, we see some people just tattooing their hands, fingers, inner wrists or necks, and faces when there is no more room elsewhere!
Are there any tattoos for private parts?
Only 4% of tattooed people are in private parts that are never exposed in public.
Is getting a tattoo a new radical act?
On the occasion of World Animal Day on October 4, environmental non-governmental organization Sea Shepherd invited the public to get tattoos in honor of species that have gone extinct. The double take thinking emerges: while we, on average, come across 10,000 people in our lifetime, tattoos can break the impasse between two people… and start the conversation on the fate of extinct species. Radical tattoos have always been around, according to artist Tin-Tin, but with celebrities bringing them to the fore, they do become more visible.
What are the current tattoo styles?
These are large, single designs that usually decorate the entire limb and feature muted tones of black and vibrant hues of red, yellow, green. Koi fishes, dragons, and mythological figures from Japanese folklore are the signature motifs.
The aim of this art movement is to depict life as it is. This demands a great level of detail, linework, and shading to be technically accurate. Watches and pocket watches are the trend of the moment!
Simple shapes, single-tone fine lines, and delicate styling: minimalist tattoos are easy to conceal and often encourage an optimism of 'no regrets', with geometric shapes, stars, plants, or everyday objects being popular.
Why do we get tattoos?
There is an idea of enhancing and beautifying one’s appearance, “correcting” a physical image that one finds imperfect. Tattoos have made it possible to “create new skin” in order to accommodate this body. It is a personal rite of passage and holds strong symbolic significance. Therefore, some of my interviewees said they felt much more identified with their new image. Intervening in one's skin, that fabric by which we are identified (gender, age etc.), changes our relationship with the world and becomes another person in the eyes of the others.
Do we ever regret getting tattoos?
Yes, when one is young, impulsively: the logo of a favorite band, a graphic imagined by high school friends, a memory related to a love story... Tattoos are specifically tied to a certain moment in our history, and as time passes, our thoughts will reassess and rewrite them in different ways. We are not the same person when we are 18 or 40! Perhaps there is no symbol in our lifespan that cannot be unmade - except for the attachments to parents or children (with their names inked).