Love is an emotion in which a person feels a strong attachment to another person, place or thing. Love can be felt at varying degrees of intensity, from mild affection to a maddening passion. Love can be expressed through tattoo art in many ways, as text, as a symbol or as an image of the person, place or thing that is loved.
Lovely Tattoos of Love
A “love tattoo” is a tattoo that uses the word “love” or portrays something that is loved, or uses a symbol of love (such as a heart) as its subject. Because of the emotive nature of the tattoo’s subject, text tattoos of the word “love” are often highly decorative and accompanied by adornments such as hearts, curls or stars. “Love” is a short word, which means that it can be tattooed onto small areas of the body such as the fingers or behind the ear. Often a typography tattoo of the word “love” is accompanied by other words such as “life”, “laugh” and love’s opposite emotion, “hate”.
Love comes in many forms. There is the simple love that someone feels for something that they have enjoyed such as a film or a good meal. A stronger form of love is felt for a relationship partner, friends and parents, and children. Love of a religious deity is a very different kind of love to that felt for a sexual partner. In western culture, all of these different kinds of love are described by the same word, “love”, even though these different forms of love often bear no resemblance to one another.
Some cultures have dozens of words for different types of love, unlike English that has only one word for the emotion. The English word “love” relies on adjectives to describe the intensity or type of love being felt, while in other cultures, different forms of love have different words to describe them. For example, “ren” is a Chinese word that means “benevolent love”, and describes a person’s attitudes and behaviors in a relationship rather than an actual emotion. In English, the same emotion is expressed by using the word “love” and the adjective “benevolent” to express a type of love that is accepting, forgiving, protective and adoring.
Tattoos to Fall in Love with
Some scientists believe that love is merely a physical sensation; that a person’s brain releases chemicals in response to the pheromones and other chemical signals of another person, and it is these chemicals that are mistaken for a purely spiritual or emotional sensation. According to this belief, all love is physical and there are no “emotions” that are separate from the body.
Whether or not love is simply a physical sensation or not, this emotion is regularly celebrated around the world. Valentines day falls on the 14th of February. Every year, shops around the world put on a pink and red display of items that symbolize love. Shelves are stuffed with teddy bears, chocolates, flowers and any number of items that have been printed with hearts. These symbols of love can be used in love tattoos as stand alone designs or with the word “love”.
Cupids are baby angels, also known as cherubs, who are associated with love and romance. Like teddy bears and hearts, cupids make an appearance around Valentines day each year. Legend has it that a cupid’s arrows are tipped with a love potion. When shot with a cupid’s arrow, a person will fall madly in love with the first person they see. In tattoos, cupids represent the wonderful sensation of falling in love, because being “shot by cupid’s arrow” means to have fallen in love.
Love has been the subject of stories and songs for centuries. An entire genre in story telling, known as romance, has formed around tales of passion and heartbreak. Song lyrics that have managed to capture the emotion of love in words are especially prized and are sometimes used in tattoo designs to represent an idea or opinion on love.
Love tattoos often sport clean, crisp designs that are appealing to the eye. It’s hard to see a tattoo of the word “love” peeking out from someone’s sleeve without feeling inspired to smile. Love tattoos are among the sweetest symbolic tattoos and are very seldom regretted.