There is never any shortage of tattoos in Generation X! As a matter of fact, the GenXer’s tattoos are so plentiful, there will be a second day in this series devoted to them.
This Forgotten Generation got noticed by horrifying their success-driven Baby Boomer parents when they came home with tattoos that expressed their deepest feelings and passions–and the feels were NOT perky! There is always a life-changing or world changing message with a Generation Xer’s tattoo. The artistry of their tattoo is important, but it is always secondary to the coolness of their message. These young people came out of college with inked images which had to be camouflaged so they could get a job in mainstream culture, while still fitting into their off-business-hours culture of cool. Now they are the mainstream culture and hire others with tattoos. The generation that oftentimes raised itself, forced the other generations to look at tattoos in a different way.
When Luna popped up with her first tattoo, she caused quite a stir at the Christian summer camp where she worked in July 1991. Her dove represents God’s promise and the heart represents love. She was the subject of many concerned prayers at camp that summer—mostly out of her earshot!
But Luna wasn’t done. She had 25 years to see the trend evolve and in April 2016, at age 46, she got her second tattoo. Inspired by her favorite song lyric by Glenn Frey “So often times it happens that we live our lives in chains and we never even know we have the key.”
She strategically had it positioned on her left foot because in marching band, one always steps out first with their left foot.
“As I step out first thing each day, it reminds me that I can be free from the chains of doubt and insecurities.”
Luna recently said her final good-byes to her dearest friend, Suzanne. In her memory, she had a tattoo of her friend’s initial placed on her hand with a beautiful blue rose.
Or you may have the opposite problem, like my GenX friend, Kathi Lipp: “So when I wanted to get a tattoo, my millennial kids were horrified and basically promised to disown me if I got it.” She remains tattoo-less. If that changes, maybe we can do a follow-up story–because you know when a GenXer gets a tattoo, there is a story!
GenXers are truly the ones who created the Renaissance in the acceptance of tattoos. They broke stereotypes and molds, along with parents’ hearts. They forged new workplace standards just by showing up with their ink exposed. The messages of GenerationXers’ tattoos are as diverse as their loyalties, the causes they support, the passions that burn in their belly, and the hard lessons they have learned. Their ‘inking,’ techniques were improved and the artistic choices and colors were much broader. This was the generation that created and branded the “tramp stamp” http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Tramp+Stamp across the low backs of women. It is said by 2050, the TrampStamp generation will be renamed the GrampStamp generation.
On our next blog post, we will do Tattoos and GenXers Redux! Why? Because GenXers have changed so many trends about tattoos. We will look at a tattoo artist success story from one of the 26 cable shows that specialize in tattoo artistry: Third season Inkmaster winner, Joey Hamilton.
Want to share your tattoo, GenXer? Snap a pic and share your story in the comments below. Know someone who might love this blog post? Please share it!