A Form Of Coping: Hurricane Katrina Tattoos
For comfort and solace after hurricane, some have inked - very personal hurricane Katrina tattoos!
Aside from their aesthetic values tattoos have deeply personal and symbolic significance for those that get them. While some get a tattoo simply for the artistic expression others get tattoos to help them recover from tragedy, move forward in life and overcome difficult times. Hurricane Katrina tattoos are such a personal tattoo.
Hurricane Katrina is ranked as one of America's deadliest hurricanes and for the days Katrina ravaged the country it caused $105 billion in damages and took the lives of an estimated 1245 people, though the actual number of lives lost could be upwards of 1800!! The devastation and effects of Katrina are still felt a decade on and while many have come to terms with the effects and loss others have struggled and to this day are yet to overcome the event.
Katrina caused most destruction in New Orleans and across the Gulf Coast and for a number of people Hurricane Katrina tattoos have taken inspiration from their home city and state. Many people had to leave their homes and were uncertain of when they'd return or whether they could at all, and as tributes to where they left they got tattoos. The tattoos primarily took the form of a Fleur-de-lis, a symbol adopted post-Katrina by the people of New Orleans as a memorial and cultural emblem of the city.
“By having the tattoo and constantly telling and retelling the stories and experiences that led to that tattoo, they probably relive and remember those times on a day-to-day basis.”
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Other Hurricane Katrina tattoos were inspired by the wildlife of New Orleans such as the craw-fish, while some took inspiration from the actual events like the 'X' painted onto the roofs of buildings sheltering those in need of rescue.
The tattoos inspired by the events of Hurricane Katrina are a permanent memorial to those lost and the damage caused. They are also a way of telling the story of the survivors and their journey in overcoming trauma and moving forward.