The practice of inking one’s flesh is as old as time itself. For some, a simple splash of color will do, an easily recognizable symbol or innocuous message.
Others, however, prefer to be as bold and personal as possible; to them a tattoo tells a story – their story – and must be worn like a badge of honor and individuality.
Because tattoos are permanent personal statements, more or less a movable museum of the flesh, few are inclined to err on the safe side and go with the status quo.
Each region of the body holds its own unique appeal to certain ink designs, from the neck down to the last toe. However, that doesn’t mean placement is the only way gentlemen are getting creative these days.
The truth is, tattoos have taken a turn from traditional and gone far into the realms of Picasso, Van Gogh, Warhol and beyond. Many of the notably talented styles you’ll find below could easily be displayed at an art gallery.
When it comes to unusual ink, some follow a more subtle route, while others stand out in their one-of-a-kind uniqueness. Designs such as abstract portraits make you question the true meaning, while geometric sailing ships might just make you wonder in an artistic state of awe.
From the neck down there is no limit to the striking and unusual motifs one can employ with the help of a skilled, outside-the-box tattoo artist. There is the option of a biomechanical design, which eludes to the bearer being more machine than man, or a full under-the-skin anatomical blueprint showing off the underlying veins, tendons, and bones; both design choices depict an alternate side of the human body.
Full-scale renderings of graphic novel, film, and literary scenes tell stories that perhaps form a unique parallel to your own, be it Moby Dick or the Dark Knight, while some may opt for hypnotic abstract patterns instead. A variety of beautifully depicted religious emblems ranging from fallen angels to Ganesha leave a poignant impression of one’s inner, as well as aesthetic, richness.