All ink tells a story

Tattoos are a creative way many people, especially on Seward County Community College campus, decide to express themselves. The stories behind the tattoos can be meaningful, sweet and personal. 

Crusader news asked the students at SCCC why they have their tattoos and if they regret them. 

Evelyn Salazar, a nursing major from Liberal, has a tattoo on her ankle in a skull design. She got this tattoo two weeks ago for her birthday. 

Evelyn Salazar, nursing major from Liberal, poses with her ankle to show her skull tattoo with a straw hat on, a symbol from the anime show “One Piece.” (Megan Berg)

The story behind the skull is that Salazar and her sister use to watch an anime show called “One Piece” growing up together which is what the tattoo is inspired by. The tattoo is a symbol of the cartoon. 

This was a sort of sister bonding tattoo as her sister also got a tattoo at the same time, and it was both their first. They don’t match, but both of the ink designs relate to the show. 

Salazar admitted that when she first got the tattoo, she immediately regretted it. It was the realization that this art was gonna stay on her forever.

 “But it’s just a tattoo. It’s not anything bad. It’s gonna be a memory of something I went through when I was younger. So I don’t think I’ll regret it in the future or get it removed,” Salazar said. 

Tanya Jance, a nursing major from Plains, got an airplane tattoo in November 2020. It was her first tattoo, and the artist had warned her that getting a tattoo on her side above her ribs would be quite painful especially for it being her first. 

Lifting up the side of her shirt, Tanya Jance, a nursing major from Plains, reveals a paper airplane tattoo. The art is similar to an album cover by Owl City. (Megan Berg )

When asked about the pain though, Jance said, “It’s not half as painful as what they warn you it will be. It was uncomfortable as they had to keep the skin tight but not very painful.” 

Her inspiration for the tattoo was from one of the artists she use to listen to named Owl City. The art on her ribs is a paper airplane similar to the cover art on one of Owl City’s albums. Jance said she just really liked the music artist and paper airplanes so she got a tattoo of it. 

She would for sure not ever get her tattoo removed. Right after Jance got it for about a month she thought “what did I do” and regretted it. Now she feels it symbolizes a time in her life where music was her escape. 

“It’s more than just words,” is a phrase Audra Langly, an American Sign Language major from Rolla, got tattooed across her side above her ribs when she was 16. The reason behind the ink is related to her major. 

Langly said she chose those words, “… because there’s a lot of discrimination and struggles the deaf community and to come through in order to be seen as equals.” 

She had started taking American Sign Language interpretation classes during the

summer of her sophomore year and started reading into the culture and the history behind it. Her tattoo is a tribute to the deaf community and a reminder of why she is pursuing her major. 

Michelle Wahl, a nursing major from Satanta, got her tattoo when she was 20. The design is a rose with a flame on top and is placed on the back of her neck. 

She got her tattoo as a personal reminder to herself, as the tattoo is the symbol of a sexual assault survivor. She shares the same tattoo with the musical artist Lady Gaga. 

Wahl said she had never regretted it nor will ever get it removed. “I love it, every single day.” 

Harvin Ibarguen, a student from Cali, Valle Del Cauca, showcases his half sleeve on his left arm. Ibarguen a self-taught tattoo artist started his half sleeve with the goal of covering up an unfavored music note-inspired tattoo.

People get tattoos on dares, for fun, as memories or as reminders; but every tattoo has a story behind it even if the design is not significant.