Traditional Tattoo Design Information

Traditional designs are using heavy black outlines with minimal color and a lot of black shades. So, they are usually darker in appearance and the color choice is limited to simple colors such as average blue, green, red and yellow. Colors are used in blocks with very few details. Also, they are being styled in such a standard way that everything they portray appears as a two-dimensional shape, without any three-dimensional depth.

Traditional designs usually lack a lot of complicity since they were done years ago with less advanced equipment and the tattoos were made fast at lower prices. Many traditional tattoo designs are portraying military and nautical motives and themes, as navy and army men were the primary tattoo clients. This traditional style preserved its popularity throughout the years, thanks to its historical significance, clearly readable simplicity and traditional American roots.

In order to make real traditional designs, tattoo artists have to work with a set of rules which will make their tattoos really traditional. These rules mostly apply on certain motives and themes and how these could be colored or drawn. For their basis traditional artists are using the work of respected and well known pioneers of this style, such as Sailor Jerry Collins, Don Ed Hardy and Lyle Tuttle. That is why a large number of traditional designs are being taken directly or interpreted from the sheets of tattoo designs prepared for mass replication, widely known as “flash”.

Those collectors who would like to get a real and fully “traditional” custom tattoo should be aware of the strict guidelines these tattoo designs imply. It is therefore wise that you choose a tattoo artist that is familiar with these guidelines and can give you the traditional tattoo with a twist of yourself or the artist. If they do not pay heed about this aspect of traditional tattoo designs, a person may end up with a “knock off” or “untrue” traditional tattoo, which will be discerned by all the people knowledgeable in the art of tattooing. Of course, this may not be important to you at all.

One of the newer aspects of traditional tattoo designs is the neo-traditional design, a design that has become more popular in the past few years. The neo-traditional tattoo is made by combining the rules of the traditional tattoos and some modern techniques and tools. This usually results in an original yet advanced tattoo. To give an example, a tattoo performed in a neo-traditional style, may still have simplified shapes and fat black outlines and characteristic for the traditional practice, while also introducing much broader color palette and some unusual, modern theme or motive. The neo-traditional tattoo designs are great for those people that like the traditional designs but would like something more original.

What Makes A Tribal Tattoo Design Distinctive?

Tribal tattoos are extremely popular, but the truth is that the term covers a wide range of designs. Their origins, as the name suggests, can be seen in artwork and tattoos of tribes from the past. However, nowadays tribal tats have taken on their own distinctive look in the Western world.

Defining Characteristics of Tribal Tattoos

Tribal designs are generally bold, black lines that are formed in a number of different abstract shapes. They are made of various symbols depending on the tastes of the wearer, and some symbols may carry a deeper spiritual meaning than others. But there are no rules – tribal tats may also be colored or feature detailed shading: they’re no longer limited to black.

Types of Tribal Tat Designs

Aside from the more modern designs described above, you may also see the following types of design:

Celtic Tattoos: Celtic tattoo designs may be considered tribal in their own right, though many of the traditional bold tribal tattoos are now incorporating elements of Celtic artwork, such as detailed knots.

Historic Tribal Designs: Modern tribal designs may have their history in real life tribes of the past, but the artwork has certainly changed. Historic tribal tat designs will actually be based on a specific tribe, such as the Aztec or Maori people. These may look completely different from the tribal tattoos of today. Many people choose these kind of tattoos to represent a close bond they may share with that particular tribe.

Other Images: In themselves, tribal designs are abstract. However, they are now being used as a creative way to fill in the body of more recognizable images, such as those of animals, stars and so on.

The truth is that inspiration for tribal tattoos can come from anywhere. Whether you want to show off your cultural roots by replicating a type of tribal tat from the past, or simply prefer the bold statement that a modern tribal designs can make, more and more tattoo artists are now specializing in this kind of tattoo design.