Maya Zink '21 is an art and design major and business scholar. She has known since age that she wanted to pursue a career as a tattoo artist.

While the tattoo industry is often met with stereotypes, Zink's story showcases how a liberal arts education paired with a love for drawing offers an unconventional avenue into the art of tattooing.

The road to becoming a tattoo artist takes grit and perseverance. A tattoo artist generally must complete a two-year apprenticeship prior to receiving their license. Zink's journey is only just beginning at the Bananafish Tattoo Parlour in New Albany, Ind., where she is an apprentice, but her Hanover experience has equipped her with the skills to succeed.

Along with Zink, Hanover College students and staff share their tattoos and the stories behind them. Zink reveals that tattoos are not always about storytelling. For some, tattoos are a tribute to a lost loved one, a connection to people or places, or a form of expression that reveals a closer look at a person's identity. Explore their stories in the gallery below.

Inked: Exploring identity, expression through tattoos