Tattoo Art Styles

5 Types of Tattooing Techniques

Before you head to the tattoo shop, spend some time going over popular types of tattoo art styles to ensure you pick a tattoo design that fits your personal preferences and taste. While you may not know which tattoo style you fancy, the more you explore art techniques you're bound to see a bit of pattern in your interests.

From dragons and Asian tattoos that are rich in heritage and culture, tattoos have a certain look and history about them that can place them into distinct categories.

Treat your body like you would any other form of fine art and be sure you explore all different art styles and interpretations before you make a permanent mark. While tribal and old school tattoos are some of the more popular forms, black and gray portraits tattoos are a timeless choice if you like fine details.

Refresh your art knowledge and find your true tattoo style, and you'll be one step ahead in designing the perfect tattoo.

Once you've narrowed down your art style, you can begin to find an artist who specializes in that type of tattooing. From there you can explore design ideas to further enhance your body piece and enrich its meaning.

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Fine line black and grey

Fine line black and gray tattoos originated in the Chicano communities of East LA during the 1970s. The use of a single-needle created fine lines with smooth and subtle shading in varied shades of black and gray. Once infamous amongst prison mates, today these artsy sketches include roses, memorial and portrait pieces.

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image cc micael tattoo@Flickr. image cc micaeltattoo@flickr

For the hardcore sci-fi or industrial types, biomechanical tattoos are a tough choice. Paired with ripped apart flesh or robotic parts, these types of tattoos look best when placed on muscled parts of the body. Think of your legs, arms, or even a neck tattoo, and then get inspired by fantastical machinery for a tattoo design. You may choose to draw the design yourself or shop around for a skilled biomechanical tattoo artist.

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Show off your blossoming beauty. Image Cc Courtesy Mytat_2s @ Flickr

Loved throughout the world for their colorful and graceful beauty and designs, Asian tattoos include language symbols to full body art depictions of koi fish, cherry blossom tattoos and dragon and tiger tattoos. Geisha women are yet another popular tattoo design if you want to honor the pin-ups of the Eastern world.

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Image CC micael tattoo@Flickr. Image cc micael tattoo@Flickr

Depicting rich culture and meaning from Native American history, tribal tattoos became a very popular armband piece in the 1990s and lost much of their significance in the process. True tribal tattoos tattooing practices are often considered rites of passage and may involve monks, blessings, and more painful hand-poked tattooing methods. Rich in spiritual meaning, tribal tattoos mark one part of life to the next.

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Traditional Old School

image cc nuvia carballo. image cc nuvia carballo

Traditional and old school tattoos are often used interchangeably and their designs include eagle tattoos, pin-up girls, ships, and anchors. From memorial pieces to love and glory tattoos, one of the most popular artists that specialized in creating this type of tattoo style is Norman Keith Collins, also known as Sailor Jerry. You can read more about Sailor Jerry and explore the history of old school tattoos here.