War Ink emerged out of a need to recognize veterans’ service and sacrifices, and to bridge the divide between the veteran and civilian communities. It is both an exhibit and forum, using tattoos as a springboard for California veterans to share their stories. Stark, beautiful, disturbing and often darkly humorous, these tattoos area visual expression of memories and emotions that can be difficult to discuss openly. And yet, the men and women who volunteered for this project were brave enough to describe the experiences behind their war ink. They tell stories of pride, loss, transformation, despair, resilience and hope.