I have tattoos myself, so perhaps I am a bit biased, but why do so many people point to the wider acceptance of tattoos as something to be critical of? The most frequent thing I hear is that I will regret them when I'm old, 'they'll look so weird when your skin ages.' Well, my skin itself will look weirder when it ages (should I cut off all my skin? Live out my twilight years as a living skeleton or something?) so I'm none too concerned about that. Also, I'm so excited because I envision myself and friends as a bunch of grannies all tatted up, and that frankly sounds AWESOME to me. I've written about body art a lot -- a few years back I wrote a little thing on DRG when I was considering whether or not to get one (ahh, youth) and more recently I talked to some girls for Teen Vogue about what it was like for them to get inked, but I wanted to highlight people I admire who have gotten tattoos. Some modern day, but more often those who got them before the body art renaissance (due to this blog's nature as a RETRO-oriented entity).
I wanted to start with Janis Joplin because she was one of the first super-influential celebrities to advocate tattoos, and also because her ink is so in-keeping with her personal style (i.e. it's BEAUTIFUL and ENVY-INDUCING).
A few looks at Janis's beautiful Florentine bracelet design
Of her ink, Janis has been quoted as saying, "I wanted some decoration. See, the one on my wrist is for everybody; the one on my tit is for me and my friends. Just a little treat for the boys, like icing on the cake." Though Janis only spoke of two tattoos -- a Florentine bracelet design (which, according to this nifty article, is also a symbol of female liberation) on her left wrist and a heart on her left breast -- according to her autopsy report (which I feel really shady about reading, but stumbled upon while doing fact-checking for this post), she had a third design: a small flower near her right heel.
Only a few glimpses of her small heart design were ever captured in a photo
A rare shot capturing two of Janis's tattoos
What do you think of Janis's tattoos? Are there any other fab retro icons with enviable ink?