Science Ink: Tattoos of the Science Obsessed
Format: HardcoverChange
Price:$24.95+Free shipping with Amazon Prime
Your rating(Clear)Rate this item


There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
VINE VOICEon November 15, 2011
Conflict of interest declaration: I'm on page 223 of this book, so I'm hardly going to give it a bad review, am I? BUT...

In the past I have been severely disappointed by "books of websites". E.g. the Insultingly Stupid Movie Physics website was great fun back when the webmaster was updating it regularly, but the book was badly thrown together and a waste of time for people who've read the website content. Even my favourite webcomics don't have the same sparkle in print. I assumed Science Ink was going to be, like a webcomic compilation, a large thin paperback with not much added value from the editor's online photo album of other people's tattoos which you can find via his blog.

So I was greatly and pleasantly surprised (I think I pre-ordered before the photo of the book was up) to find, on unwrapping this, that it is a beautifully bound hardback with clever cut-outs in the cover that allow colourful photos on the endpapers to tantalise the viewer. The Gothic blackletter used for the word "Ink" on the cover and in the photo headings is a nod to stereotypical tattoo art. The size of this book is a bit larger in the horizontal dimensions but thinner than an average hardback novel, nowhere near as big as a "coffee table" book.

In addition to a normal index, there is also an ingenious "Visual Index" of thumbnail photos so if you can't remember who or what a cool design came from, you can still look for it easily.

Content-wise, I believe there are quite a lot of photos not featured on the website (at least a lot that don't look familiar to me), in addition to all the ones that are online. A lot of the text in this book consists of the tattoo submitters' personal accounts of why they chose their particular designs. However, Zimmer has written mini-essays on the subject of a tattoo where the wearer has not given a long annotation, and his clear and elegant writing also forms chapter introductions. The hilarious Mary Roach (I've read her "Stiff" but have yet to get a hold of the others) provides a short foreword.

In summary, I would recommend this book without reservation to anyone interested in science or tattoos even if I wasn't in it!
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
23 of 24 people found the following review helpful
on January 2, 2012
I am a scientist but I have no tattoos. In fact, I abhor the idea of permanently marking my body with current interests. I have no bumper stickers on my car. My interests and my passions are kept within me to discuss with those I wish to discuss them. Someday my friends and family members might wake up and wonder what the hell possessed them to litter their bodies with ink - just as I expect all those car owners with Ford/Dole bumper stickers to wonder with regret. OK, you get the picture of my attitude. I love science but question tattoos. Nevertheless, I found this book so interesting that my tattoo views changed.

I purchased two copies for in-laws who love tattoos and are covered in them. These two people are dear to me and I support them in their interests even if I find them odd. What I discovered after reading the book on Christmas eve and Christmas day was that there are some incredibly creative people out there permanently marking themselves with their passions. I loved the intricacies of many pieces. Would I get a tattoo? No. Would I recommend the book to those who love tattoos? Yes. In fact, I would recommend the book to anyone who loves science and art. The book is a work of art.

Well, here is the rub. I might consider getting my social security number tattooed on my foot in barcode just for easy posthumous identification. There you have it! I changed.
11 commentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
on November 28, 2011
My caveat to this review is that I have a passion for all things science and tattoos, but I'm not an expert in either.

I pre-ordered this book with reservations because there are many"bad" tattoo books out here. And I thought how could these two co-exist together? Aren't scientists sort of nerdy? Aren't people who have tattoos super cool? However, I was knocked out when I received the book, you will see that both co-exist together very well. And lo and behold scientists are very cool or at least have very cool tattoos.

The book comes in a sturdy hard cover edition that has cut-outs on the front to reveal some of the science tattoos pictured in the book. This is a beautiful book that will last years on the coffee table or a favorite spot on your nightstand to explore again and again.

For the tattoo lovers there are plenty of beautiful and wildly different tattoos from the simple symbol of the null set, the intricate mathematical calculation of the set theory, to a rendition of outer space. If you are in need of ideas for a different kind of tattoo this is the book for you. Most of the tattoos are in color and for the most part the pictures are clear, although some of the tattoos are a bit fuzzy, but this could be a result of old and somewhat fading tattoos. There is also a Visual Index in the back of the book so that you can see thumbnails of all the tattoos along with corresponding page numbers so that you can locate the larger photo and read more information.

For the person who likes science there is a wealth of short and concise essays about the meaning of the tattoos pictured, why the person decided to get the particular ink and more background information about the particular science topic. This is really the heart and soul of the book--the passion behind the reason for getting a tattoo is often as interesting as or maybe even more interesting than the actual tattoo. One of the most intriguing pieces in the book (including a picture) is the copy of the oldest tattoo uncovered so far. The tattoo was on a man who was found in the Alps when the snow cover receded and exposed his body. It is the body of the man (nicknamed Otzi) who died 5400 years ago.

The information presented is just the right balance--enough science to whet your appetite, but not enough information to overwhelm most people especially if you are not particularly geared towards science.

As a person who has tattoos, I can identify with the authors regarding the meaning behind a person's reason for getting a certain tattoo. It was refreshing to read about the passion and see the beauty of the tattoos. If I have any criticism of the book is that I wanted more....more pictures, more personal stories and at certain times more of the science behind what the tattoo represented.

I would highly recommend this book to anyone interested in science and/or tattoos.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on March 8, 2012
I bought this book after hearing Mr. Zimmer speak on Science Friday, and haven't regretted it one bit. It's not just that so many of the tattoos are beautiful and creative, it's the stories about why they were chosen and the meaning they had for people who got them.

The book was actually a very inspiring book about science, too. Every one of these people felt deeply enough about at least one aspect of science that they wanted to wear it on their body forever. The text often used their own words to explain the scientific or personal significance of whatever symbol or equation or formula they'd chosen to use. Those words were often eloquent and powerful, written by people who knew their subject and who were passionate about it.

I also enjoyed the text written by Zimmer. He was informed and clear, and covered the subject without either oversimplifying or using confusing jargon. It was a nice balance, giving the reader a glimpse into the vast world behind each piece of art.

The book is more than just a collection of pictures, though the pictures themselves are worth the price. I felt that the book truly showed how passionate these people were about science and about their tattoos.
22 commentsWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on January 11, 2012
Science Ink may have been the least expensive gift under the Christmas tree but it turned out to be the best. The amazing cut-out cover drew everyone's attention, and the beautifully photographed tattoos kept it. Everyone wanted to look at it and soon started reading the explanations of the scientific tattoos that particularly interested them. No one in my large family has a tattoo, but everyone from middle-school to advanced age periodically spent time reading the book throughout the holiday week. It prompted many conversations, both artistic and scientific, aided by the photographic index at the back that allows one to quickly find a tattoo or topic of interest. An informative book that captures the continued interest of even a reluctant reader is a true find!
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on December 31, 2012
Honestly, there are blogs these days that probably do a better job of corralling these sorts of images, with pictures of better quality. I would buy this again, but I'm not a huge fan.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on January 5, 2012
Overall I really like this book. It has great pictures and interesting stories to go along with them.
There are, however a few mistakes that I noticed:
In the story about Dr. Datta's DNA tattoo, Zimmer writes that GGA codes for Glutamate, when in fact GGA codes for Glycine and does not match the picture showing GAA, which does code for Glutamate. The picture shows a sequence of GAG-GAA-GAG-GAA while the text writes that the sequence is GAG-GGA-GAG-GGA.

In addition, the bases are labeled in the image as Green=G, Amber=A, "Tomato" (red)=T, Cyan (blue)= C. This code makes sense for the GAG-GAA-GAG that codes for the initials EEE. However, the picture shows red (T) pairing with green (G)and blue (C) pairing with yellow (A). Anyone who has taken a high school biology class can tell you that this pairing is incorrect. Not sure if this one is a mistake on the part of Dr. Datta or on Zimmer.

This does not necessarily take away from the interesting story or the beauty of the artwork, but is something that should be editing before publishing (especially when catering to an audience of science geeks!)
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on January 18, 2012
Wahh! Book of the year! These tats are beautifully photographed, set in a stylish, nicely formatted hard cover book. Matte pages bring the ink edges to life. Beyond interesting.

The book is diverse, loads of science-made-lovely (p. 32!), dinosaurs, bugs (p. 124!), trees, animals, humanity...and an entire section in homage to Darwin.

Personal favorites? The portrait of the endangered orangutan, as the owner of the tattoo says it is "a reminder for when they become extinct." Also, a geographical cross section of rock types that is a wrap-around tat, chemistry chic, alloy and, the "orange developing into an Alien face-grabber (p.160)." P.S. Particle man, I'm in love!

5 stars, easy. Bonus info: pictorial index.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on November 30, 2012
I bought this for a christmas gift for the man friend. We are both into tattoos and science.
It is really neat to check out, and cool to actually sit down and read. Some of the tattoos could have been a better quality for being published, but I suppose that the subject matter makes it a hard topic to cover!

Overall, its pretty cool, like I said, just got to be into that kind of thing!
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on May 23, 2013
I am disappointed with the picture quality of this book. As a person who loves beautiful ink, I was hoping for some high quality beautiful art. The facts associated with the tattoos are interesting, but overall I am disappointed.
0CommentWas this review helpful to you?YesNoSending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
     
 
Customers who viewed this also viewed
The Word Made Flesh: Literary Tattoos from Bookworms Worldwide
The Word Made Flesh: Literary Tattoos from Bookworms Worldwide by Justin Taylor (Paperback - October 12, 2010)
$11.98

My Planet: Finding Humor in the Oddest Places
My Planet: Finding Humor in the Oddest Places by Mary Roach (Paperback - April 4, 2013)
$13.49

Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex
Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex by Mary Roach (Paperback - April 6, 2009)
$13.74
 
     

Send us feedback

How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you?
Let us know here.