I have often contemplated being tattooed but never managed to engage with an idea or design enough to commit to such a long-lasting symbol. With this project, I wanted to explore people’s motivation behind their first tattoo, the design and the meaning it holds for them.

Nearly all photographs were shot outside, in natural light, and in a location where I normally encounter the people. The subjects were all friends or colleagues and were asked the same series of questions regarding their tattoo. When and why did they get the tattoo, what meaning it holds to them and what was the inspiration for the design, ending with the question if they could instantly have it removed, would they? To which all answers were a resounding no.

Apart from the subjects name, I chose not to include any other personal information such as age or profession, instead letting the viewer focus on the images and the subjects own words about their tattoo.