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Just a basic rundown of some of the more common tattoo styles


Text and music notes tattoo by Ian The Comedian
It’s amazing how powerful and thought-provoking a single word can be. As the saying goes, “A picture is worth a thousand words.” When it comes to Text or word tattoos you have to take into account that the text can't be too small. Too much can also not be good idea. As a guide we would suggest the text be no smaller than 1cm in high* ( *hight of each letter) and you limit the amount of words to about a maximum of 15 words.


line work bunny tattoo by Debay DeLUx
Line work Tattoo Style is just what it says. A from of tattooing based on line as the main focus in the tattoo from minimalist and simple tattoos to the most complex composition but still remaining quite elegant.


Taribal dragon tattoo by Ian The Comedian
Tribal tattoos — i.e. indigenous body art — are the oldest in the world, dating back thousands of years. This style should actually be thought of as multiple styles or more so different traditions of tattooing from aboriginal communities all around the globe. These diverse and beautiful styles are frequently referred to under the umbrella term "tribal," but to the trained eye, Polynesian body art is distinctive from Marquesan or Maori tattoos, just like tattoos on Inupiaq matriarchs' faces are different from those found on Berber women. Though these styles are all unique, they are somewhat similar— almost always done in black with elaborate patterns.


Traditional Eagle tattoo by Ian The Comedian
Traditional tattoo style, classic tattoo style or Western traditional tattoo style, is known for its bold lines, bright colours, and iconic designs like roses, anchors, and gorgeous lady heads. With heavy hitters in the history of Traditional like Sailor Jerry, Don Ed Hardy, Bert Grimm, and Lyle Tuttle.


Neo Traditional tattoo by Ian The Comedian
As the name implies, is an evolution of the traditional style. It features the core properties of its predecessor, like pronounced linework and extremely vibrant colors but it also has an illustrative quality to it. This is because Neo traditional artists are highly influenced by Art Nouveau and Art Deco aesthetics. The main difference between traditional tattoos and neo traditional tattoos is that neo traditional tattoos often have a broader color palette and a broader range of motifs. Pieces done in this style are known for their lush, decorative details as well as the use of natural imagery such as florals and animals.


Illustrative tattoo of a scottish dancer by Ian The Comedian
A large variety of work can be called Illustrative, and that is because there are so many techniques and art movements that inspired it! From etching and engraving, to abstract expressionism, and even fine line calligraphy, this tattoo style is extremely versatile. Many artists who work in this style will blend their own aesthetic with it to create a whole new style of their own...but as long as their tattoos look like they could belong on a piece of paper or a canvas hanging up in gallery, you know it's Illustrative!


Water colour Tattoo by ian The Comedian
It looks like what it sounds like, as if rendered with a brush dabbled in watery pastels. Artists make all sorts of whimsical and poetic pieces using this innovative approach to tattooing.


New School Tattoo of Fran
New school rose to prominence in the weirdness that was the late '80s and early '90s. Featuring a highly animated aesthetic that takes after popular entertainment from that period in pop culture history. The style is cartoonish and wacky, featuring caricatures and other exaggerated figures.


Oriental Tattoo of Koi Carp and cherry Blossoms with waves by Ian The Comedian
The traditional Oriental tattooing aka Irezumi, originated during the Edo period (1603-1868) alongside ukiyo-e — woodblock prints that were hugely popular among the merchant class at the time. Because of this, the icons found in this time-tested genre of body art come from the country's age-old folklore, featuring tattooed heroes from the Suikoden and mythological creatures like dragons, kirins, and phoenixes. In short, every tattoo done in this style tells a story about Japans rich past, and beyond their dramatic smoke and wave filled appearance, this is what makes Irezumi masterpieces so powerful.


Chicano Tattoo angel drinking by Ian The Comedian
Chicano style has so much cultural influence that it has gone on to influence other styles as well. Steeped in the history of things such as the Mexican Revolution, Los Angeles low-riders and Pachuco culture. Born behind bars, the aesthetic evolved from artists in prison who used what few materials they had to beautifully capture what they loved and missed on the outside. Usually fine line, black and grey, and wrapped up in the Chicano culture, this genre of tattooing is absolutely enthralling.


Thanos tattoo,, marvel tattoo, the snap, by Ian The Comedian
Comic books found true artistic expression for the first time in the Pop Art movement, which appropriated commercial objects such as product labels, magazine ads and comics for the purpose of fine art. It's as much part of the modern culture now as TV or Film.


Realism Tattoo of Clint Eastwood cowboy by Ian The Comedian
Though classic realism has been a part of the fine art since as far back as the Renaissance, it only found its way to the world of tattoos recently, cropping up around the latter half of the 20th century. Since then, this new tattoo style has become increasingly refined and extremely popular. As it now stands, you can find jaw-dropping colour and black and grey portraits of pretty much any celebrity you can think of as well as realistic depictions of nature and just about anything else imaginable, even the surreal.


Pin up Tattoo Gil Elvgren tattoo by Ian The Comedian
The term pinup is mainly used to refer to women who are very beautiful, very attractive and those that men would be very happy to pin them to their walls. Their first time to become popular was back in 1890s.


Trash Polka style tattoo Gil Elvgren pin up by Ian The Comedian
The characteristics of Trash Polka tattoos can be a combination of naturalistic, surrealistic, photorealistic motifs with graphic, lettering and calligraphic elements in mainly black & red.