Native Americans have sported tattoos for centuries. Native American tattoos not only look amazing, they are also symbolic of certain ideals. The following write-up provides information on these tattoos.
Nothing catches the eye better than a really good tattoo on a well-toned body. It instantly becomes a fashion statement with a deep impact. But those of us who think of tattoos as merely a striking fashion statement need to realize what tattoos are really all about. Tattoos aren’t just a fascinating form of art. They delve deeper into the traditions and culture of the civilizations that came into existence centuries ago.
Tattoos weren’t just created for their aesthetic appeal, but symbolized different aspects of the person they were created on. Tattoos were used for various purposes: as a mark of identification of a particular tribe, to signify the rank of an individual in a tribe, to bestow praise for accomplishment or achievement and sometimes even in hope of attaining special powers. Tattoos of animals and mythical creatures, especially, were made in order to obtain the characteristics and powers of that creature.
Native Americans have been using tattoos for centuries, which were created for a number of reasons. For example: after a war had been won, the victors often got tattoos signifying victory. Many Native American tribes were known by their distinct, unique tattoos. There were different markings that distinguished tribes and the regions they were from. Some Native Americans, especially those from the northwestern parts of South America, used tattoos to distinguish and recognize a woman’s village.
Alaskan tribes used tattoos to mark the killing of an enemy. Many Native American tribes believed that tattoos held mystical or spiritual powers and passed it on to the wearer. Both men and women from the Lakota Indian tribe got such tattoos, without which their ancestors would deny them entry into the afterlife.
How the Tattoos Were Drawn
Great skill was required in creating these tattoos. The Native Americans would use tools such as sharpened fish bones, turtle shells, or rocks as needles to carve the tattoo into the flesh. The area would then be filled with soot or natural dyes as pigment to stain the wound. The process of creating tattoos with crudely sharpened natural objects must have been a painful one, to say the least, and to resist the pain of tattooing for a long time was looked upon with awe and admiration. There were specific individuals within a tribe who were trained in the art of tattooing. The experienced artisans created the tattoo with carefully applied strokes.
Tattoos in Today’s Society
Nowadays, many people opt to identify themselves with Native American tattoos of their tribes. This is true for people with Native American heritage as well as those who just know of the culture and admire the legacy. If you are looking to get a tattoo in order to display your proud heritage, I would suggest deep research before going under the needle. Many people are unaware of their tribe’s true insignia and as a result, end up getting symbols related to an entirely different tribe indelibly inked on their body. However, there need not be traces of Native American blood in you to get a tribal tattoo done.
If you aren’t particularly concerned about what the tattoo represents, you have quite a huge platter to choose from. Tribal art forms have grown quite a reputation in today’s society and these tattoos are often a popular request for many tattoo artists. Native American Gods, mythical figures, animals, instruments, musicians, and feathers are among the most popular designs being replicated today.
If you’re looking for an authentic Native American tattoo, have the tattoo designed by an artist trained in the art and with a knowledge of Native American tribes. Before choosing a design, it is advisable to browse the vast collection of designs available online. There are thousands of galleries where you can get a wide variety of tattoo samples and find the one that suits you best.