When most people think of fashion, they think of the clothing we wear, the bags we carry, and the accessories we use to enhance these things. We think of the physical objects that define our personal style, that are infinitely interchangeable. However, something that arguably says more about someone’s personality than the clothing they wear is a tattoo; or, in many cases, a collection of them.
The concept that tattoos can have personal meanings or enhance someone’s personality is not foreign. Many people have ink that signifies hardships, memories or places.
Still, tattoos are so much more than symbols; they define someone’s style more than any article of clothing or piece of jewelry could. With clothing and accessories, we have the option to change, evolve and grow as time goes on. If something isn’t quite right, we have the option to switch it out for something else. We can get rid of a coat if it’s damaged or doesn’t fit. We can return a pair of pants if we don’t like them after taking them home. Tattoos are quite the opposite.
Tattoos are permanent, and carry a larger significance than anything physical. They cannot be removed as we mature, which is why the decision to mark one’s body permanently says more about a person than anything else.
A tattoo can make something as simple as a white t-shirt seem special, because it gives insight to the person wearing it. It allows the world to see the hardships that the wearer has experienced, favorite pieces of artwork that the wearer values, and overall personality.
Even a collection of random tattoos with no deeper story shows spontaneity and boldness. It shows confidence in who that person is, and a bravery to be different. A beautifully illustrated, self-designed piece shows creativity and pride in one’s abilities as a designer or artist. A symbol of a place shows attachment and love. Tattoos do not always have to be deep to make a statement.
No matter what, tattoos will always speak louder than the clothing we wear.
Descriptions by Model:
Cole’s tattoos are small in scale, but large in meaning. They clearly identify him as a lover of both the ocean and the mountains and show where his heart belongs.
Haley’s shoulder tattoo was designed by a team consisting of herself, a colleague and the artist. It shows creativity, collaboration and appreciation of effort.
Morgan said himself that not all of his tattoos have a specific meaning, and this speaks to his boldness and creative personality. He lightheartedly asked why all tattoos have to have a deeper meaning. Not many people I know could pull off a tattoo of their logo on their bicep, especially one that isn’t 100% accurate, but for him, it is perfectly fitting. Every time I see him, I see more ink, and in turn, more of him.
Terrance’s tattoos are a work in progress and speak of the things he values. They blend his love for creativity, music, and passion, and speak to the success he has had with these three things. His tattoos never seem to finish changing and growing, just like Terrance as an artist. He has a vision for all of them, just as he does his music and his life.
Written and Creative directed by Madison Mallard
Photographed by Patrick Meynard
Modelled by: Cole Mason, Tamara Castilla, Haley Sipsock, Morgan Lewis, Terrance Boston