It is easy to get lost in a good tattoo, especially one with a design straight from the deep sea. Aside from being fascinated by the overall look of an angler fish, contemplating the meaning behind each dip of the needle takes time, dedication, and appreciation to bring this inked sea creature to life on the human canvas.
Since the beginning of time, humans have been connected to the sea as a means for survival, joy, and even faith.
Upon the establishment of civilization, the fishing skill was used as a means to distinguish the classes. Essentially, if a person was able to fish, they were viewed as not only skilled, but as a professional able to feed entire nations. Today, that same theory stands true. However and as colonization and tensions between cultures came to light, the fish as a permanent symbol on a person’s skin marked them as being affiliated with the military, specifically the Navy.
Aside from military affiliation, Western cultures tend to use the fish as a symbol for skill and hobbies. Basically, if a person enjoys fishing and is good at it, it is common to embrace this symbol for a tattoo. Being a dominantly Christian portion of the world, this style of art is commonly associated with Jesus Christ because, after all, he was known as the fisher of men.
In African cultures, angler tattoos represent the creation of life and fertility, as many African Gods took the form of a fish when fulfilling their tasks. Because fish are edible and continue to save the world from starvation each day, a multitude of cultures associate angler art as being a symbol for abundance, blessings, healing, and power.
Commonly, these symbols represent ancient knowledge as well simply because a human’s connection to the sea is perhaps one of the oldest relationships of all.