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Inspirational Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Tattoos

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“I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.” – Martin Luther King Jr. Today is Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, a federal holiday observed on the third Monday in January each year that celebrates and remembers the birthday of America’s most influential nonviolent civil rights activists. Born on January 15th, 1929, Martin Luther King, Jr. would become a figure head of the Civil Rights Movement and noted as one of the greatest American orators to ever live after delivering his famous “I Have a Dream” speech in Washington D.C. In 1964, he received the Nobel Peace Prize for combating racial inequality through nonviolence. Each year we ask ourselves if his dream has been realized, and each year we come to the conclusion that it hasn’t been. People are still judged by the color of their skin instead of the content of their character, and, as many tattoo enthusiasts know, the color itself doesn’t have to be anything in particular. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s emphasis on content of character struck a chord among the listeners of his speech in 1963 and continues to do so today. Despite most of us universally agreeing with King’s main idea, in practice it’s much more difficult to judge everyone by the content of their character than it seems. Unconscious pre-judgements and jumps to conclusions are natural instincts all ...Read More »

Ten Controversial World Religion Day Tattoos

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Some of the most horrifying atrocities the world has ever seen have been brought about by a difference in religious beliefs. It’s a fact atheists are quick to mention whenever the topic is brought up, but it’s also one that doesn’t quite provide the whole story. Religions of all kinds have also brought a message of hope and peace to billions of people around the world, which is what World Religion Day is all about. The holiday was started back in 1950 by the National Spiritual Assembly of the Bahá’ís of the United States. Its purpose is to promote the idea that, at their core, all religions revolve around the messages of peace and harmony, and that they ultimately serve to unify humanity. World Religion Day was quickly recognized by countries the world over. Even in 1950 it was already being celebrated by two cities in Australia. Widespread observance started with radio stations in the 1950s. Today, World Religion Day events are recorded and sometimes televised, with celebrities and highly respected members of society speaking about the importance of the holiday and religious unity. However, despite the occasion, people still wear their religion on their sleeves, making it difficult for anyone to get a religious tattoos without sparking at least a bit of personal controversy. While many people may agree with the general idea of the coexist logo made of various religious symbols, plenty still take offense to it for a variety of reasons. Getting a religious tattoo like the ...Read More »

R.I.P. Tattoos to Remember Those Lost in 2015

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Gone but not Forgotten!! – Tattoos are one of the most endearing ways to remember those we’ve lost and those who’ve had the greatest impact on our lives. The beginning of the year, particularly the first few weeks in January, are often used to reflect on the year that just went by. Websites and YouTube channels have done “Top ___ of 2015” lists and videos as a way to acknowledge and remember the good times we all had throughout the year. While it’s important to remember the fun times, it’s also important to remember the people we’ve lost. Not just for the year, but for the rest of our lives. The world lost a lot of good people in 2015, from beloved movie icons to musical legends. Tattoos are one of the most intimate and sincere means we have of memorializing the memories of people who’ve touched our lives over the years, which is why it’s only fitting we remember some of the people we lost in 2015.   LEMMY from Motorhead Ian “Lemmy” Kilmister passed in late December 2015 of cancer. His impact on many in the tattoo culture and community was so great that hundreds of fans shared their Motorhead/Lemmy tattoos with us on our social media, paying tribute to this fallen hero. We collected a bunch of them here- Wes Craven Even people who aren’t fans of horror films likely recognize Wes Craven’s name. He was the creator of Freddy Kruger and a legendary horror film director who ...Read More »

Food Tattoos to Think About

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Most newbies are told to think about getting something that means a lot to them when getting a tattoo, but not many people think about food. It’s a little odd, isn’t it? We need food to survive, over the course of our lifetime we spend more time eating than doing just about anything else, and the type of food we choose to consume can elicit hour long conversations with spouses and loved ones. Food is important in everyone’s life, even if they’re not a foodie or food connoisseur. The importance of food in our lives is clearly understood on a subconscious level. Idioms, phrases, and various other forms of universal truths and sayings have been tied to food over the centuries. Restaurants and food product manufacturers have left us with a plethora of food-based mascots and imagery that has been seared into our brains along with catchy jiggles and slogans. There’s so much inspiration for food-based tattoo designs that it can be overwhelming to pick one that’s right for you. The ten pictures in the gallery below are a nice starting point for anyone looking to get a food tattoo.  You could go with something a bit zany, like the super cheesy pizza slice, or something realistic like the portrait of a perfect burger. Maybe you want to make a statement, like “Death before Decaf”, or have fun with food-based wordplay like “stud muffin.” Food tattoos are an idea that’s gaining popularity, but they also aren’t considered by the majority ...Read More »

Women and Their Ink

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The Huffington Post featured an article last year entitled “The Secret Lives Of Tattooed Women” where Claire Fallon wrote about the societal climate of women with tattoos, how its viewed by the general public and how having tattoos effects women’s lives. It’s an interesting and well written article, but does it accurately represent its subject matter or is it just one person’s experience? One of the main points of the article pertains to the treatment of women with visible tattoos. Fallon cites Beverly Yuen Thompson, stating “transgressive behavior, like visible tattoos, only encourages unwanted touching,” in order to back up here own personal experience of strangers grabbing her arm to ask if her fake arm tattoos – which she put on as an experiment – were real. Was she approached this way because she was a woman or because she was sporting fake tattoos in an attempt to illicit a response from people? The fact of the matter is that tattoos on women – and men for that matter – are more sociably acceptable than ever before. On average, more women have tattoos than men nowadays. Sure, “women tend to stick to the ‘small, cute and hidden’ tattoos”, but is that really a matter of social acceptability? Visible tattoos are still largely considered taboo in the workplace, and even men trend towards getting hidden tattoos for that very reason. Tattoos can accentuate the feminine form in a way most men can only be jealous of. The women featured below look ...Read More »

Travel Tattoos that Take the World with You


Many of us have adventurous spirits, innate desires to explore as many unique parts of the world as we can. Unfortunately, the financial reality that such travel requires often leaves many of us stuck in place more often than not  – making the few times we actually get to travel significant experiences. Most people choose to use either postcards or souvenirs to remind them of their explorations around the globe, but these reminders are inherently flawed. At best, these items are placed around your home and used as conversation pieces for first time visitors, but before long they become background items your eyes glide over without recognition. At worst, they’re thrown in a box somewhere and forgotten. Travel tattoos are one of the best ways to take your travel experiences with you. Whether it’s a map you use as a checklist – coloring the places you’ve visited as you make your way around Europe or somewhere else – or a postcard-esque rendition of a particular location, a tattoo will last a lot longer and remind you of your times in a faraway place much better than any sort of memorabilia you cart back home. You don’t necessarily have to use travel tattoos for the expressed purpose of remembrance either. Maybe you’re one of the fortunate few living the exploratory life in full and simply want to display your adventurous nature for all to see. Many modern adventurers get tattoos of airplanes and compasses, showing off their preferred method of travel ...Read More »

RIP: Tattoos Honoring Lemmy from Motorhead

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Rock music has played a huge role in the tattoo industry and community, so it’s only fitting we talk about the loss of one of rock’s most influential figureheads – Lemmy Kilmister. Ian Fraser “Lemmy” Kilmister was born in England on December 24th, 1945. After being inspired and influenced by The Beatles, he set out to make his way in the rock industry any way he could. He worked as a roadie for Jimi Hendrix, played in various bands – such as the Rockin’ Vickers and Hawkwind, but what he’ll forever be known for is founding and frontmaning the legendary heavy metal band known as Motörhead. Lemmy founded Motörhead in 1975 and peaked in success during 1980 and 1981 with the band’s iconic smash hit “Ace of Spades” from their UK number 1 live album No Sleep Til’ Hammersmith. He stuck with the band through numerous musician changes and for 22 albums until he died on December 28, 2015 at the age of 70. The 2010 rockumentary Lemmy was produced over three years and consists of a wide variety of interviews that showcase the far reaching impact Lemmy had on lives from all walks of life. Ozzy Osborne, Alice Cooper, Slash, Ice-T, and many other highly respected musicians and creative professionals spoke about Lemmy and his impact on their individual lives and careers. Upon hearing the news of his passing, Dave Grohl – the lead singer for The Foo Fighters, who’s also featured in the 2010 rockumentary – got a ...Read More »

What’s Up Your Sleeve?

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Visible tattoos hurt job prospects. That’s not an opinion, it’s a fact – one that is constantly reevaluated by research groups and psychology students year after year. In 2015, a 2700 person survey found that 76% of people felt tattoos hurt a job applicant’s chances of landing a position and 42% of those same people felt visible tattoos were inappropriate in the workplace. Yet over 40% of adults between the ages of 18 and 29 have at least one tattoo. Tattoos have been on the rise in popularity for quite a few years now, even though the attitude towards visible tattoos in the workplace still hasn’t changed. The reason we bring this up is because sleeve tattoos are the most common tattoo forms people worry about getting because of how it may impact their potential job prospects later in life. Most other forms of tattoos are easily covered up without having to sacrifice comfortability, but the thought of perpetually wearing long-sleeved attire even during sweltering summer weather often turns people away from getting the sleeve tattoos they so desire. Do Sleeve Tattoos Actually Harm Your Job Prospects? The answer is a little more involved than a simple yes or no. The truth is that it entirely depends on the field you’re planning to build a career in. As long as you’re not expected to appear on camera, people with creative careers can wear and sport whatever tattoos they want. Their work and credibility is almost entirely derived from their portfolio ...Read More »

Painful Tattoos! Let’s Explain How Bad Tattoos Hurt


You’ve probably heard all the horror stories about the pain associated with tattoos. About people fainting, having to quit with a tattoo only partially done or going through dozens of small sessions to get through the process. Despite what you’ve heard, tattoos really aren’t as painful as you may have been led to believe. We’re going to walk you through what makes a tattoo hurt and how you can better manage the pain when getting your first, second or fiftieth tattoo. What Makes a Tattoo Hurt? There are a few factors that determine how much pain you’re going to feel while getting tattooed, but the most important factor is where the tattoo is located. Areas of the body with more nerve endings, which tend to be more sensitive to pain of any kind, are going to be the most painful to get tattooed. This includes most joint areas, such as the armpits and back of the knee, and of course genital regions. The most surprisingly painful region is around the ribs. While it may seem relatively numb, the upper area of your mid-section is made up of soft tissue that is incredibly sensitive – hence people who are ticklish and why poking someone in the side is an especially effective way to get their attention. The first picture in our gallery below, which is made up of particularly painful tattoo examples, is a pain chart that’ll show you the relative pain level of each body region. Beginners should definitely look ...Read More »

Sexy Sternum Tattoos


You don’t need see their faces to know these woman are confident and badass. The sternum, or under boob tattoo is trending with thousands of designs, intricate meanings and a body placement that simply accentuates the natural curves. Sternum tattoos offer a ton of room for artists to work with and act as perfect accessories for a variety of outfits and situations. They perfectly accentuate curves and can be used to show off that figure you worked so hard for when bikini and midriff season come around. As you can see from the gallery below, many women opt to get jewelry-like sternum tattoos for just such occasions. The sternum tattoo is a fairly new and bold choice that is becoming more popular each and every year. The area is highly sensitive, making sternum tattoos among the most uncomfortable to bear through, which is why many women choose designs that aren’t colored in or otherwise require minimal work. But a little pain is most certainly worth the gain, as you can see from the women in our gallery. The sternum is one of the best locations for tattoo artists to design on. It’s a wide, flat canvas on which designs are only limited by the imagination. From quotes written along the under boob area to colossal works of are, the possibilities involved in sternum tattoo designs are truly endless. One of the biggest concerns people have about getting sternum tattoos is the amount of upkeep involved in keeping it looking great ...Read More »

All-American, Patriotic Tattoos


While it’d be easy to say, “There’s nothing more American than tattoos”, the truth is that there’s nothing more human than tattoos. Tattooing is one of the earliest art forms known to man. In 1991, German hikers discovered the remains of a 5,300 year-old mummified man who had 57 tattoos on his body. That being said, there are few things more representative of American patriotism than a tattoo. Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Whatever else your tattoo may mean or stand for, it more than likely represents at least one – if not all – of these things. This means that American patriotic tattoos represent the absolute pinnacle of the American Dream to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Patriotic tattoos are among some of the oldest in America’s history. For a long time the art of tattooing was practically exclusive to sailors and military men, who would often choose to get patriotic tattoos as a symbol of what they were fighting for – a practice that is still continued to this day as characterized by a number of the tattoos featured in the gallery below. Before dog tags became a standard form of identification, many parts of the military recommended troops get tattoos as a form of post mortem identification. To put it simply, tattooing is one of the first and oldest ways American citizens could show their love and support for the country they fought for and adored. Getting a patriotic tattoo is a great ...Read More »

The History of the Mom and Heart Tattoo

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These tattoos are one of the most personal ways to express the love you have for your mother and the gratitude you feel towards her. Apart from giving birth to a child, mothers nurture, protect and make sacrifices for their children throughout their lives. This natural attachment is felt by everyone, regardless of nationality, race, status or religion, and some people make the highly personal decision to ink it permanently on their body as a permanent reminder of gratitude. These tattoos vary greatly in design and style, and sometimes are tattooed with other meaningful symbols to add to the aesthetics. The most common Mom-Heart tattoo incorporates some sort of symbol (normally a heart design),with the words, Mom, Mum, or Mother written on a ribbon across the heart. Other symbols this tattoo design may accompany depends on the personal experience of the one getting the tattoo and what they find meaningful. The most common choices are diamonds, pearls, wings and fire. Some even choose to go with butterflies or work their mothers’ favorite flowers into the tattoo design. The History of the Mother and Heart Tattoo It’s believed the first person to tattoo his mother’s name across the chest was an old Irish Sailor. He started this cherished tattooed design with a heart and saber, as well as the memory of a sailor’s song that he sung, “Kissed me darling mother”. This classic heart and mom banner is now, perhaps the most famous and widely loved tribute tattoo. Honor your Mom When ...Read More »

10 Colorful Rockabilly Tattoos

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Are you like a little bit of country and rock ‘n’ roll? Then you’re probably already quite familiar with all things rockabilly, even if you don’t recognize the term. Rockabilly, the musical genre tag that denotes the early 50’s style of rock-and-rock, has transcended music to encompass an entire art form and lifestyle. Rockabilly tattoos represent the old timey swinging musical stylings found in music by legendary artists like Elvis Presley and famed featured films like Greased Lightning. The name comes from a combination of rock ‘n’ roll and hillbilly, the latter of which was often used to reference country music back in the 1940s and 50s when the rock ‘n’ roll genre first began to form. Largely originating from the southern regions of the United States, the first rock ‘n’ roll artists were strongly influenced by country music, and thus the rockabilly genre was formed. Rockabilly was used as the soundtrack for rebellious youth spirit during its early years, like many musical genres before and after its inception. It’s survived throughout the years as a characteristic of a time period long passed but not forgotten, where slicked back hair and bow tied hairbands were in fashion among the young men and women of the time. As you can see in our gallery below, many rockabilly tattoos seek to capture this classic look and often mix it with various other common tattoo themes and elements. From milkshakes to microphones, the plethora of iconic imagery that captures the rockabilly time period ...Read More »

10 Steampunk Tattoos to be Inspired By


The retro-futuristic Victorian setting that characterizes the steampunk style is the primed to inspire creative and unique tattoo designs. The sci-fi art style involved in all things steampunk related is incredibly detailed and vivid, making for exquisite works of art that anyone engrossed in the romantic retro-Victorian era can appreciate and find appealing. Steampunk was born from the scientific romance novels of the 19th century by famous writers of the time, such as Jules Verne, H.G. Wells and Mary Shelley. The term first appeared in the 1980s, drawing inspiration for the cyberpunk genre that was being popularized around the same time too. Over the past 30+ years the steampunk science fiction subgenre has steadily grown in popularity, particularly for the gear-based retro-futuristic art it inspires. As characterized by many of the steampunk designs featured in the gallery below, mixing traditional symbols like the eye and heart with a steampunk theme can make for some incredibly unique and creative one-of-a-kind tattoos. The theme gives tattoo designs a very eclectic feel, representing multiple interests and facets of one’s personality all at once. Steampunk tattoo designs can also create fascinating illusions, transforming human body parts into mechanized prosthetics that’s sure to stun many passersby as you go about your daily routine. The full arm sleeve design featured below is a perfect example of what can be accomplished with the steampunk aesthetic. Are you looking for a tattoo that represents your love of all things science fiction? Have a passion for all things steampunk? ...Read More »

What are Trash Polka Tattoos?

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With tattoos becoming more popular each year, it’s only natural that designs would begin to change and evolve. As more people get tattoos, it becomes increasingly likely that two or more people will wind up with the same design. For many, that’s simply unacceptable, which is where designs like Trash Polka tattoos come into play. The Trash Polka tattoo art style originates from the Buena Vista Tattoo Club in Würzburg, Germany. Tattoo artists Simone Pfaff and Volko Merschky are credited as the originators of the style, calling it a blend of “realism and trash; the nature and the abstract; technology and humanity; past, present, and future; opposites that they are trying to urge into a creative dance to harmony and rhythm in tune with the body.” The two distinct aspects every Trash Polka tattoo features are its chaotic blend of real and abstract imagery, which often utilizes words or writing of some kind, and its sole use of red and black ink. Trash Polka tattoos are made to attract attention and appear fresh, bringing up concerns that they may not hold up well on their own over time. Although the style is so new that there’s no way of knowing just how much touch-up work may be required to keep its stark appearance over the years. It may be difficult to find an artist who can mimic the Trash Polka style if you’re unable to fly to Germany and have it done by Pfaff or Merschky. The purposeful chaotic style ...Read More »