In 2016, the World Health Organization declared the Zika virus a global public health emergency, leading to a worldwide ban on travel to the region.
But in Puerto Rico, the Zika outbreak was still rampant.
Since then, local and international media have chronicled the health issues caused by the virus, which have led to more than 100 deaths and thousands of infected patients.
But what if there were a way to get a tattoo on your body without having to worry about how to get tested for the virus?
Tattoo artist Daniel Boudreaux, who created a tattoo for his wife, says he thought about the idea while watching the latest episode of the TV show The Good Place.
Boudis was inspired by a story from the show about an African man who was diagnosed with Ebola and wanted to make a tattoo to show his support for his country.
“There was this guy who was like, ‘If I had Ebola, I would want a tattoo,'” Boudes says.
“I’m like, I can’t believe this is happening, but I guess it’s what we want to do.”
Boudreux says the idea for the tattoo came from a photo of a man with the disease in Senegal.
“When I saw this photo, I was like ‘that’s me,'” he says.
The tattoo came to Boudres life in 2016 when he visited Senegal.
He decided to do a tattoo with his wife to show support for their country.
The ink on his body is water based.
Baudres says he wanted to show how simple it was to make water based ink, and that the idea was a way for him to show that the process is not so complicated.
“I love this idea,” he says, “because we’re all going to die in this disease, and we all need this, and you’re just going to have to get the tattoo.
We’re all on this journey together.”
Boodreaux says he had a tattoo artist do a “punch-card” design of a tattoo, but he decided to add a different shape and a different color to make it look like the Ebola virus.
“They just drew out the color and cut it out,” he explains.
“And it’s just so cute.”
In the photo, Bouds wife and his wife’s family are in the background, while the family’s two children are standing in front of him.
“It was like a painting, like, a big painting, where they’re just kind of sitting there,” Boud said.
He says the family is the inspiration for the design.
“You don’t need to get your hands dirty to make the tattoo,” he adds.
Bouds says he used a spray can of acrylic paint, then he and his friends painted the image on the back of his neck.
They then went to the local tattoo parlor, where he was able to get tattooed.
“There was just no way I could have done it without them,” he said.
“The pain and the sweat and the blood were all just gone, just in a few minutes.”
Bettreaux’s tattoo was finished and ready for the world to see, and it was quickly sold out.
But not everyone was so lucky.
“We had people come in with all kinds of problems, all kinds,” Boodreaus says.
His wife had a rash, and Boud was rushed to the hospital, where the infection was discovered.
“It was almost like a nightmare,” he remembers.
“He’s just standing there, and the doctors are saying ‘we have to call your family.’
But it was all right.
It was all okay.”
The tattoo artist has since taken his tattoo out of Senegal and returned to the U.S. to continue making art.
“That’s just what I wanted,” he recalls.
“To continue making things for people.”Read more: