America's core cultural reference books, professional journals, newspapers and magazines recognize tattooing as a well-established art form that, over the last three decades, has undergone dramatic changes. In the 1970s, artists trained in traditional fine art disciplines began to embrace tattooing and brought with them entirely new sorts of sophisticated imagery and technique. Advances in electric needle machines and pigments provided them with new ranges of color, delicacy of detail and aesthetic possibilities. The physical nature of many local tattooing establishments also changed as increasing numbers of operators adopted
Once a taboo practice largely confined to sailors and street hoodlums, tattooing has evolved into a highly prized fashion product for celebrities and millions of middle-class consumers.
equipment and procedures resembling those of medical clinics -- particularly in areas where tattooing is regulated by government health agencies.
The cultural status of tattooing has steadily evolved from that of an anti-social activity in the 1960s to that of a trendy fashion statement in the 1990s. First adopted and flaunted by influential rock stars like the Rolling Stones in the early 1970s, tattooing had, by the late 1980s, become accepted by ever broader segments of mainstream society. Today, tattoos are routinely seen on rock stars, professional sports figures, ice skating champions, fashion models, movie stars and other public figures who play a significant role in setting the culture's contemporary mores and behavior patterns.
During the last fifteen years, two distinct classes of tattoo business have emerged. The first is the "tattoo parlor" that glories in a sense of urban outlaw culture; advertises itself with garish exterior signage; offers "pictures-off-the-wall" assembly-line service; and often operates with less than optimum sanitary procedures.
The second is the "tattoo art studio" that most frequently features custom, fine art design; the ambiance of an upscale beauty salon; marketing campaigns aimed at middle- and upper middle-class professionals; and "by-appointment" services only. Today's fine art tattoo studio draws the same kind of clientele as a custom jewelry store, fashion boutique, or high-end antique shop.
The market demographics for tattoo services are now skewed heavily toward mainstream customers. Tattooing today is the sixth-fastest-growing retail business in the United States. The single fastest growing demographic group seeking tattoo services is, to the surprise of many, middle-class suburban women.
Tattooing is recognized by government agencies as both an art form and a profession and tattoo-related art work is the subject of museum, gallery and educational institution art shows across the United States.
By Hoag Levins
Tattooing has an integral place in American society. In recent years, there has been a resurgence in the popularity of American traditional tattoos. This classic American tattoo style, also known as Americana style, Traditional or Old School (Old Skool), is on the rebound both in the US and in Europe. Although today’s popular culture places heavy emphasis on contemporary designs and motifs, little attention is given to the history behind the tattoo culture in America.
The Americana style is one of the oldest and most enduring tattoo styles in America today. Its origins date back to the turn of the 19th century, when body ink was mostly sported by criminals, people in the navy or circus and side show freaks. This era gave rise to the American tattoo forefathers.
Although one artist cannot claim credit for single-handedly pioneering the style, a few noteworthy individuals deserve recognition for putting it on the world map. These individuals include Sam O’Reilly (credited with inventing the first tattoo machine), Cap Coleman and Paul Rogers. These men were on the scene and setting the foundations of the style well before tattoo icon Norman Keith Collins, aka Sailor Jerry, began plying his craft.
Undoubtedly, Sailor Jerry contributed a great deal to the tattoo industry during his career. Apart from expanding the tattooist’s pallet by adding new pigments, his analytical approach led to the improvement of the tattooing machine and the introduction of hospital-style sterilization of tattooing equipment.
Over the past few years, tattooists such as Mike Pike, Bert Krak, Dan Higgs and Ed Hardy have remained faithful to the classic American tattoo style leading to its current popularity worldwide.
Unlike the tribal tattooing style characterized by heavy, black outlines and intricate designs, the Americana style is easily distinguished by simple bold and solid lines with few contrasting colors. Common motifs include nautical and religious symbols, daggers, skulls, mermaids, women, flowers, anchors, hearts and eagles among others. These traditional tattoos are now synonymous with simple sophistication and often carry a clear and direct message.
So if you are stumped on which tattoo to get, why not choose an American traditional tattoo design? It is a choice you are sure not to regret.
May 7, 2013
Star Wars Day
may refer to one of two dates or events honoring or involving the Star Wars
May 4May 4 is considered a holiday by Star Wars
fans to celebrate Star Wars
culture, books and honor the films. It is called Star Wars
Day because of the popularity of a common pun spoken on this day. Because the phrase "May the Force be with you" is a famous quote often spoken in the Star Wars
films, fans commonly say "May the fourth be with you" on this day. Current day Star Wars
fans were not the first to introduce the line "May the fourth be with you": when Margaret Thatcher was elected Britain's first female Prime Minister on May 4, 1979, her party placed an advertisement in The London Evening News
that said "May the Fourth Be with You, Maggie. Congratulations."This reading of the line has also been recorded in the UK Parliament's Hansard.
In a 2005 interview on German news TV channel N24, Star Wars
creator George Lucas was asked to say the famous sentence "May the Force be with you." The interpreter simultaneously interpreted the sentence into German as Am 4. Mai sind wir bei Ihnen
("On May 4 we are with you."). This was captured by TV Total
and aired on May 18, 2005.
In 2011, the first organized celebration of Star Wars Day
took place in Toronto, Ontario, Canada at the Toronto Underground Cinema. Produced by Sean Ward & Alice Quinn, festivities included an Original Trilogy Trivia Game Show; a costume contest with celebrity judges; and the web's best tribute films, mash-ups, parodies, and remixes on the big screen. The second annual edition took place on Friday, May 4, 2012.
In 2013, Disney's Hollywood Studios is celebrating the holiday with several Star Wars
events and festivities.
Honoring the day Nao_(robot) created a unique greetings to all Star Wars fans .
May 25The Los Angeles City Council declared May 25, 2007, as Star Wars
Day, in honor of the 1977 release date of Star Wars
. A separate initiative for observing Geek Pride Day on May 25, is based on the Star Wars
connection along with ties to The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy
- "Star Wars Day: How old is old enough for this movie?", Kate Shatzkin, The Baltimore Sun, May 4, 2009
- "Forced" or Not, There's a "Star Wars" Day, by Alysia Gray Painter, NBC, May 4, 2009
- "The Force Is Strong in this One", Quentin Hardy, Forbes, April 30, 2009 – "There's even an annual "Star Wars Day" in May ("May the fourth be with you")."
- "Yes, it's 'Star Wars' Day", by Whitney Matheson, USA Today
- ^ Star Wars day: May the 4th be with you, My Fox Chattanooga, May 4, 2010 Unknown parameter |section= ignored (help).
- ^ Danish National Radio on-line news
- ^ Hansard, Column 786, May 4, 1994, UK Parliament Hansard, Column 784.
- ^ "May the 4th Be with You!". Disney Parks Blog. Retrieved 28 April 2013.
- ^ "NAO greets May the 4th fans by telling Star Wars Story.". Retrieved 4 May 2013.
- ^ Council File Number:07-1368, May 1, 2007, City of Los Angeles – Council File Number:07-1368.