Tat-Tuesday: Students' tattoos express family, ties personal stories

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Photo Credit: Melanie Westfall | Daily Texan Staff

Editor’s note: Tat-Tuesday is a weekly series that features students around campus and their tattoos.

Yasmeen Dahiya 
Public relations junior Yasmeen Dahiya always knew she would get tattoos, but she wanted her first one to have deep significance. 

“I’m the first grandchild on both sides of my family,” Dahiya said. “I got my grandparents to write out ‘I love my granddaughter’ in their three different languages. It starts off with Hindi, then it’s Urdu, and then it’s Gaelic.”

Dahiya’s tattoo not only reminds her of her grandparent’s love, but also her unique heritage. 

“My parents are kind of Americanized and my grandparents are the ones that were actually born in those countries and moved here,” Dahiya said. “They’re the biggest connection that I have to that part of myself. My grandparents were an important part of my life and where I get my sense of culture from. I wanted to represent that.”

Michael Barber
History senior Michael Barber thrives off concepts of asymmetry and opposites. The tattoo covering his upper arm is a representation of that.

“I call it my tattoo of contradictions,” Barber said. “The unity between two opposing things, between black and white. The change between the two.”

Before he got his first tattoo, Barber was opposed to the idea. After playing around with the concept, he now sports multiple tattoos. Barber said they hold a personal significance to him.

“It’s kind of attached meaning after the fact,” Barber said. “It’s less about the actual design itself than what I’m reminded of when I look at it, its meaning to [me].”

Barber also said he’s not worried about the stigma attached to tattoos.

“I abandoned respectability and threw it to the wayside, because I know I’m not going to be at an office job,” Barber. “Or at least it’s not where I’m going to end up happy anyways. I’m committed to being covered at some point and I’m just gradually working up to that.”

Trevor Seaks
When Trevor Seaks was studying abroad in South Korea and the possibility of getting a tattoo arose, he jumped on it. Seaks knew it was illegal in the country, but felt it was a once in a lifetime opportunity.  

“It just seemed like a good place to get it done,” Seaks said. “I just got it through someone who knew somebody, and it was just like a regular tattoo shop. It wasn’t really sketchy or anything.”

The large shoulder piece took 30 hours to finish, but Seaks said it was worth it.

“I’ve always liked dragons my whole entire life,” Seaks said. “I want lots of tattoos and it filled up the space nicely. I think everyone should get a tattoo and get more of them.”