"The first question I ask people is 'What do you want?'"
Jasmine Morrell of Spirited Tattooing Coalition took us through the process and philosophy of getting a tattoo, something they described as an act of freedom and an act of resistance.
"What do you want?" Your tattoo choices tell how you want to be seen in the world. They are signifiers. What do you want to world to know?
"What do you want?" Getting a tattoo is an in-depth experience. It's subcutaneous. And it's important to Jasmine that the experience that people have with them is meaningful and memorable. "People walk away with the experience." they said.
"What do you want?" Jasmine, as a queer trans person of color, calls the experience of self-ownership, as represented by tattoos, vital. "I've had people look at my tattoos and try to take my name away from me."
"What do you want?" Jasmine continued, "claiming your body is for you and you alone... This is for you... You don't have to talk to people about your tattoos. Conversely, having a tattoo is freeing. And it doesn't have to have meaning. It's taking control of your body. Which in itself is a political statement."
"So, what do you want?"