ShaneRealz

The ole spider webs

56 posts in this topic

What do you think the modern day stigma for these on the elbows are these days?

Jailhouse/racist or classic tattoo design?

cvportagee likes this

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still jailhouse/racist but slowly making its way to classic tattoo design. The more people that get it, the faster the attitude toward it will change.

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When I think of classic tattoo design this pic comes to mind. I have a web on my arm, but have not done any jail time in my adult life. But if someone was thinking about starting shit with me and didn't because of my tattoo I wouldn't be offended.

jade1955, Dude, Kev and 5 others like this

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still jailhouse/racist but slowly making its way to classic tattoo design. The more people that get it, the faster the attitude toward it will change.

Never heard of these being racist...is there some history behind this? Not doubting you just curious.

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It came up as an Aryian tattoo for killing a minority on a lot of the searches I did myself. I'm not in America and have never done time there so thats why I'm asking?

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When I think of classic tattoo design this pic comes to mind. I have a web on my arm, but have not done any jail time in my adult life. But if someone was thinking about starting shit with me and didn't because of my tattoo I wouldn't be offended.

That picture is the first thing I thought of.

And I've never heard of them being a racist thing, but there's a lot of shit I don't know/never heard of, so that doesn't really count for much of anything.

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I've heard of it being a racist thing, but I have also heard plenty of times that it was a myth. And, I have seen it on at least one very brown dude.

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I'm considering an elbow web myself at the moment, so i'd definitely lean more towards the "classic tattoo design" side!

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From what i can gather, the racist piece is kind of by association. It is a classic prison tattoo, and prison tattoos are associated with prison gangs, and prison gangs are associated with racism.

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Webs have nothing whatever to do with the Brand, or with ANY racist organization inside. They are strictly a mark of doing a bit. I've seen 'em on cons of all colors.

It's probably just an old-time attitude, but whenever I see a college kid with a web tattooed on his elbow, all I can think of is "best to ALWAYS keep a few C-notes tucked in your wallet just in case"!

Personally, I think it's lame and dangerous to start trying to use symbology owned by a group of people who earned it the hard way...they tend to get a little testy about it at times.

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From what i can gather, the racist piece is kind of by association. It is a classic prison tattoo, and prison tattoos are associated with prison gangs, and prison gangs are associated with racism.

What people freeside call "racism", cons call survival. It's easy to be all welcoming and inclusive when you aren't being threatened with extortion, rape, and death on an hourly basis. Cons join cliques because of that, not because they are "racist".

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I can't find a picture of it cause I'm on my phone, but I believe Lyle Tuttle has web's on both of his elbows. I think this image is older than its current prison associations but do you really wanna be explaining all this to the group of guys asking where you did time and what for?

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Right, and the OP's question was about public perception. So I commented on what I feel the public perception is.

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It always just struck me as the obvious/classic thing to get on an elbow - long before I knew anything about tattooing really :confused:

I've seen a fair few people getting roses recently, but it's a pretty awkward spot to place things really, isn't it?

Kev likes this

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I think if I was moving to my elbows (or knees) I'd have my upper arms or legs covered ie use the web as filler. I'd also put a big freaking spider or girl head in it, but that's me.

I don't get this "tattoo the most awkward spot" thing when people have large swaths of empty space that could be easily tattooed.

Gato Negro, hogg, bongsau and 1 other like this

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@Kev I got my knee done because I know what I want on them and want to fit stuff around them rather than leaving them and being influenced by what fits at the time.

I feel a bit differently about elbows, they're just a bit of a shit spot for anything I think - that skin's all shit and wrinkly anyway, at least with a knee there's some proper flat-ish surface area.

Kev and InkedMumma like this

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I can't find a picture of it cause I'm on my phone, but I believe Lyle Tuttle has web's on both of his elbows. I think this image is older than its current prison associations but do you really wanna be explaining all this to the group of guys asking where you did time and what for?

I do believe he did, but the connotation of doing time goes back long before Lyle was a dirty thought in his daddy's head! Spiderwebs, brick walls, towers, empty clock faces, bars, all that type of thing, they've been around as convict tattoos for way longer than any of us have. When I was a shorty, there was an old guy in the 'hood, must have been in his eighties, and he was pretty well covered in jailhouse. He had done time in the old Joliet back in the twenties...lots of time. Bad, bad, bad place...spend ten or twenty years there, and mark yourself as a dues-paying member, you might be inclined to do something anti-social to a kid wearing what you view as a badge of honor.

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[MENTION=1196]...I feel a bit differently about elbows, they're just a bit of a shit spot for anything I think - that skin's all shit and wrinkly anyway, at least with a knee there's some proper flat-ish surface area.

I get pretty bad ingrown hairs on my elbows, so that would be my biggest concern.

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When I think of classic tattoo design this pic comes to mind. I have a web on my arm, but have not done any jail time in my adult life. But if someone was thinking about starting shit with me and didn't because of my tattoo I wouldn't be offended.

Bob Shaw is the man.

kylegrey likes this

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Bob Shaw is the man.

I believe his flash is without equal , I recently found this online

Bob Shaw

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Before I knew anything about Lyle Tuttle or tattoo culture in general, I always saw (still do!) spider web tats as mandatory for skinheads (either on the elbow or shoulder) and I was explained it stemed from jail tats and that it had gotten popular amongst the skinhead populace as a way of saying we are all in a way 'prisoners' in society. Just a theory.

Of course all of this means zip to your average ironic hipster client. I saw one of these the other day with some very visible russian prison tats (taken straight off the books, cyrillic script and all) and I'm sure that won't fly too well with certain people. Too bad.

Never heard the racist thing though.

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I want a spider web tattooed on my elbow but this is the only tattoo my girlfirend pleaded with me not to get because of its links to skin heads in the uk. I didn't give the meaning any thought just wanted it because i thought it was a cool tradtional design that fitted the space well. I then asked my friends what they thought the meaning was and there replies, done bird (time in prison) rasist and skin head.

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Webs have nothing whatever to do with the Brand, or with ANY racist organization inside. They are strictly a mark of doing a bit. I've seen 'em on cons of all colors.

It's probably just an old-time attitude, but whenever I see a college kid with a web tattooed on his elbow, all I can think of is "best to ALWAYS keep a few C-notes tucked in your wallet just in case"!

Personally, I think it's lame and dangerous to start trying to use symbology owned by a group of people who earned it the hard way...they tend to get a little testy about it at times.

- - - Updated - - -

What people freeside call "racism", cons call survival. It's easy to be all welcoming and inclusive when you aren't being threatened with extortion, rape, and death on an hourly basis. Cons join cliques because of that, not because they are "racist".

i udnerstand this, but spider webs are seriously one of my favorite images. i want to cap my shoulders with them, as well as get them on my knees with something in the middle. i'm the furthest thing from a con, but fuck it. they look so damn awesome.

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i udnerstand this, but spider webs are seriously one of my favorite images. i want to cap my shoulders with them, as well as get them on my knees with something in the middle. i'm the furthest thing from a con, but fuck it. they look so damn awesome.

Hey, I'm old, so I've got old-skool (did I just piss someone off with that k?) about things...times have changed so much in the last few decades, and so much has found it's way into the popular culture, that I doubt work like that would cause you any hassle.

Unless you do it with a machine made from a tape-player and a bic pen, and use india ink!!!

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I know nothing about prison or tattoo tradition, but I have alway thought the webs were prison tattoos.

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