By Celica Cook, SBM Student Life Editor

Virgil Angeles, a 2018 Messiah graduate and current admissions counselor is a big fan of tattoos. In fact, he once planned on becoming a tattoo artist during his early years at Messiah. But, his plans changed, and now his tattoos stand as a permanent reminder for the things in life that are most important to him. This is what he had to say.


So, what tattoos do you have?

“I got my first one a month into being at Messiah. ‘HGA’ stands for ‘His Glory Alone’ which has always been a moto for me. ‘1963’ is when my Mom was born. I dedicated this one to her. The ocean and mountains stand for the idea that our love reaches from the deepest sea, to the highest mountains. The pen is because I’m a huge fan of words, and I see how much meaning and power they have. So, I wanted to have something on me so I could always remind myself that everytime I speak, I can never take it back. I wanted it to be a pen instead of a pencil because that kind of emphasizes how permanent it is.”


When did you first decide to get a tattoo?

“At the time when I was thinking of getting a tattoo, I knew I wanted to be a tattoo artist for a while, but I was going to be the type of tattoo artist that didn’t have any tattoos himself. Then, I came to Messiah, and my older sister was here, and she asked me if I wanted to get one with her. I said, sure. So, we got one together.”


Did you design all of your tattoos yourself?

“ I wanted to make sure that all of the tattoos I got in my life would be designed by myself. Before you see the final design, you would see my sketchbook, and there would be hundreds of different variations of the design. I am particular about what it looks like, the size, the line weights and things like that. I guess that is probably why I majored in art.”


In your opinion, what makes tattoos an important art form?

“It is the only art form where if you did a hundred tattoos, you would have a hundred different pieces of your art walking around simultaneously all around the world. It’s also just a really great way to express yourself.”