Top 55 Simple Forearm Tattoo Ideas – [2022 Inspiration Guide]
Perhaps one of the most iconic images from childhood is the image of a sailor with his forearms tattooed. We’ve all seen it and we’ve all noticed the tattoos, but the question is — are you brave enough to get one?
Having a forearm tattoo has great social and personal significance.
It is in a place to be seen. It is in a place to make a statement. And it is in a place that speaks to others about your confidence in yourself.
In the past, sailors were the only people in American society to get cool arm tattoos. Initially, a forearm tattoo started as a record log of sorts, holding a sailor’s identity in case of drowning, but it quickly took on a different meaning. It became a history of what the sailor had seen and where he had visited. It showed his skill, his bravery, and his experience. Forearm tattoos became the mark of a man worth his mettle and proud of it.
Today, you get to choose how to express yourself. Will you go minimalistic tribal, or choose a symbol that means something profound to you?
The only real question is, what do you want the world to know about you?
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1. Triangle Forearm Tattoos
This three-sided can exemplify a number of different meanings depending upon the individual who wears it on his skin. They can be incorporated into larger pieces or are used to isolate a particular narrative that is important to the person willing to put the on display.
These pieces come in all shapes and sizes. The in this section, though, are minimalist and rely on the art of linework — a seemingly simple yet hard-earned craft to master for artists. Some have the appearance of mountains and arrows or utilize other geometric shapes within their form.
A triangle is a , which is often used to refer to a trinity of concepts such as religious themes like the Holy Trinity (the father, the son, and the holy spirit), a parental unit consisting of two parents and a child, and even abstract constructs such as the past, present, and future.
Below is a double triangle , with both triangles facing downward. A triangle facing downward is also the oldest symbol of feminine divinity. Called the chalice, it represents a woman’s womb.
Some designs are specific references to pop cultural influences, such as the Triforce symbol from the popular Nintendo game Legend of Zelda. The Triforce is the golden power or the ultimate power.
Other popular triangle include the Viking valknut, referring to three interlocking triangles. Valknut is an old Norse word that translates roughly to “knot of slain warriors.”
Another popular triangle that you may get on your is the penrose or impossible triangle, which depicts an object that could not physically exist.
2. Simple Circle Tattoos
A circle is another shape that possesses several different connotations and possible symbolic meanings.
The in this section display a popular fad in the world, which is the seclusion of the piece from other pieces on the person’s body for the sake of a single narrative. They vary greatly in comparison to the American Traditional style of tattoos, which relies heavily on constant classical themes and repeated imagery.
Many of these circular are unique and these tell varying tales through the use of multiple styles and techniques.
One utilizes the dotwork style, a technique that requires a to ink multiple dots to create an image, to outline a simple vision of our planet earth.
Another depicts a maze with a person standing at its entrance, applying heavy shading and black ink work to highlight the separate sections.
Because of their size and potential to contain such small images that imply such a bulbous plot line, many of these minimalist pieces of body art are placed just inside the wrist or inner forearm. This size and placement are also popular ideas for people who claim to not really “be into” tattoos; minimalist is the answer!
3. Simple Linework Tattoos
These are incredibly straightforward — so straightforward, in fact, that some of them don’t even have form. Lines are popular choices, again, for those who aren’t exactly into the covered head-to-toe look. These individuals tend to lean toward the geometric precision and simplicity of the minimalist.
Example pieces in this section, some of which are placed on the , are what appear to be lines connecting the stars in a certain constellation, straight lines curving around the inner elbow, and the beauty of seven perfect lines formed into an open rectangle.
What these lines represent varies from one individual to another, but some popular explanations rely on the consistent repetition of parallel lines in our lives; in structures, in art, in science and mathematics, in stories, etc.
The Latin phrases “memento mori” and “memento vivere” make for simple complementary . These roughly translate to “remember that you must die, so remember to live.” This is also among the popular matching among couples.
An example of a is a small and simple outline of a book, which could indicate a love of literature.
The remaining forearm tattoo ideas in this section display a story far less ambiguous but still utilize either a single-standing running line or two parallel lines running side by side. Linework essentially exists in virtually all applications and styles, but because of its stark nature, relies more heavily on accuracy in order to elevate the narrative that is being expressed.
4. Personalized Symbolic Tattoos
You can still get yourself a piece of minimalist work that involves more detail, as well as a dose of a more personalized tone. The pieces in this section can mostly fit just inside the wrist, while slightly larger pieces nestle neatly on the inner or .
Many express a tone that is highly personal, with a meaning that is more difficult to decipher. A geometric style and dark shading remain relevant and amplified due to the negative space surrounding the piece.
Symbolic include triangularly stenciled mountains, which could imply an admiration of nature, and a shark functioning with half steampunk mechanics and half geometric shapes, which could imply many meanings to the wearer.
This is a triquetra , one of the most famous ancient . It represents the three basic elements — air, water, and earth. It could also refer to the infinite cycle of life — birth, life, and death or rebirth. The circle interlaced with the triquetra represents the bond or infinite connections among the three elements. Many other , or their variations, are popular within the community.
Simple calligraphy on the may suffice for some individuals, while a collection of to literally wear your baking passion on your reveals a transparent significance.
You’re right; a . A single rose and its thorns in heavy black ink looks stunning against the pale skin of this .
This looks like a simple series of parallel lines, but a closer look reveals that this amazing shows the stages of a matchstick as it gradually burns and turns to ashes.
The body is a large canvas, and while many people feel the inclination to cover up completely, it is possible for an important story to be told with very little ink, should that align with your personality style.
Did you enjoy these simple forearm tattoos but are looking for more inspiration? Check out the links below for other small and simple tattoo galleries that can help you find your next piece of badass body art.