The Art of the Tat


I am excited to bring a new series to NPC in the off season: The Art Of… I will be researching all kinds of cool Steelers stuff within the realm of Art. After all, I hold advanced degrees in the arts. I wouldn’t be putting my skills to good use if I didn’t try to attack this subject in some way…

Throughout the history of this franchise, there have been a number of iconic pieces of art. From Jimmy Pol’s first Steelers Fight Song in 1973, to statues of The Chief, there is plenty of stuff to check out and explore. I may even review a book or two. My hope is that you find this series interesting and informative in a time when news about football will be at best bland and unexciting. I am sure my colleagues here at NPC will come up with awesome things to talk about during the off season so I am going to steer clear for now.

I want to get you involved. I am asking for submissions of any kind of Steelers related art that you can think of, and if I deem it worthy, it will be included here on NPC. To me (and probably Websters Dictionary, too), “Art” means a lot of things. If you think it’s art, it probably is! I’m thinking music, tattoos, paintings, drawings, graffiti, pottery, poetry, statues, drinking toasts…you name it.

We will start with the tattoo.

It takes a special human being to forever scar their body with a marking that may or may not resemble a player, logo or Steelers cymbal. Getting a tattoo is a big risk. It can be a ton of fun, or it can go horribly wrong. I’ve seen some epic Steelers tattoos and I want to see yours.

Since this is my first post, I will be starting with my own personal favorite Steelers tattoo ever…mine!

As you can see, this tattoo has multiple layers of awesome. I mentioned in a previous post that my father passed away a few years ago on Super Bowl Sunday Feb 1st 2009. He had a heart attack two days before the big game against the Cardinals, and my whole family watched the game from the lobby of the ICU in the hospital. You can read the whole story here. After his passing, I decided it would be appropriate to get my first tattoo, and what better way to commemorate his life than to get a Steelers tat? My dad always joked that if he were to get a tattoo it would be a Superman tat, and since I’ve never known a bigger Steelers fan, putting the two together seemed logical. A friend of mine, tattoo artist Bambi Khan, designed and etched it. She did a magnificent job, as you can see from the pics.

There are the three stars from the logo, it is black and gold, and in the shape of the Superman “S.” She even included a little figure that represents my pop. You can see it in the upper left quadrant. There is double meaning to the Superman logo in that the Steelers have been referred to as “super” since the 1970’s. I’ve got the cover to an SI magazine that reads “Super Steelers.”

This is why doing a segment about art excites me so much. There are countless stories surrounding tattoos, sometimes tear-jerking, and other times hilarious. I want to hear about yours. Why did you get it? What is it of? Were you sober?

Leave your comments in the comment section below, or email me a pic and story of your tat to: I’ll rifle through and find the most worthy tats and include them in the next edition of The Art of The Tat.

Anyone who can show proof that this competition was the straw that broke the camel’s back and is the reason they finally went out and got that Steelers tat, will automatically be included.

Did you know?
The Steelers logo was originally created by US Steel in the 1950’s. The Steelers didn’t include it as their own logo on the helmets until 1962.