Students receive tattoos at Holland College – but they can come off

Stephanie Butt gives a student at the Holland College library a henna tattoo on her arm on Sept. 30. Butt is a graphic design student at the college. Jason Ginter photo.

By Jason Ginter

Sept. 30, 2016

A group of students sit in the Holland College library on Sept. 30.

They watch as several receive tattoos of flowers, elephants and other freehand pieces.

Librarian Leslie Holt walks around talking to students and staff who have dropped by.

“Just leave it for 30 minutes, then it will begin to crumble and fall off.”

The tattoos are in fact, henna body tattoos, known as Mehndi in India.

The library hosted the event at noon, offering henna art to students and staff at the college.

Mostly students in the graphic design program did the tattoos, with one future student and one past student participating.

Stephanie Butt was one of the graphic design students. She has only done henna once before, she said.

“It turned out really badly.”

This time around, she’s satisfied with her work, she said.

“When you don’t practise a skill, it decreases.”

Butt was allowed to create her own designs on most of the students, she said.

“It’s all creative freedom. I’ve only done one structured tattoo today. I hope they like their tattoos.”

Brittnay Lanigan is a second-year student who got a tattoo done.

“I really like mine.”

Alysha MacGregor, another graphic design student, did her tattoo, a freehand flower.

“I just told her to do whatever,” said Lanigan.

Lanigan has other tattoos, but she doesn’t think the henna tattoo is one she would keep.

“I don’t want mine to last too long.”

For those who do want their tattoos to last longer, there is an oil that can be put on it later. The library often holds events, but the henna might be coming back, Holt said.

“I think we will bring henna back at some point, it seems to be very popular.”

“The students were just amazing. They could get a lot of money doing this professionally.”

Henna is the “in thing” right now, Holt said.

“They have a few places that do it in Charlottetown.”

The library’s next event will be held Oct. 26, Holt said.

“We’ll be having a medium, a physic, here. She does a show called The Funny Things Dead People Say.”