From the proud astrological sign of Leo to Aslan, the fabled ruler of Narnia, the lion is the king of both man and fellow beast, a symbol of courage and regal bearing.
In African belief the lion represents self control and discipline, while medieval Europeans held the lion as one with royalty, often even keeping them as courtly pets.
A creature of astonishing beauty and force, the lion’s endangerment in recent years has rendered it a king truly in danger of losing his kingdom.
The ancient Romans often used the symbol of the lion to express their love, while ancient Egyptians carved great statues of two lions with their backs touching in representation of eternal balance. Alternately, the lion can be used to represent one’s Christian and Islamic beliefs.
Not all lion tattoos require a stylized or cartoon depiction; many prefer a realistic representation of this sacred animal. Survivors of physical trauma may choose to tattoo the figure of a lion over previous scars or injuries, a mark of triumph over adversity. Others opt for a life-like rendering to raise awareness for this endangered species. And some will tattoo the lion’s profile directly over their heart, a declaration of the true “lion heart.”
Regardless of where and how you wear your lion tattoo, there’s no denying the unwavering courage and morals of the man who aligns himself with this king of kings.
This realistic lion tattoo shows great ferocity and strength. Done in black and gray, this finely-inked lion’s head almost appears to be approaching the viewer as it comes off this man’s arm mid-roar. The intricate detail of this mighty cat can be seen by simply taking a close look at its features. The intense makeup of its mouth, particularly in terms of its individually shaped and formed teeth, is one significant instance of this detail. Another is the great animal’s whiskers which have been applied in a sort of wispy, almost tangled format. This gives them a greater sense of realism, something these lion tattoos are all about.
Seen on this man’s arm is a realistic tattoo of a lion that appears to be utterly infuriated. Such feelings are reflected in this king of the jungle’s intense facial expression as it opens its large, furious mouth to let out a roar that would surely intimidate any other species. While it is unclear exactly what this particular lion is meant to symbolize, there are many possibilities. There is one in particular that could be considered, particularly if this creature’s facial expression is taken more as a show of strength and less as a declaration of anger. This symbolism is that of recovery. Perhaps, for example, the wearer of this tattoo has gone through some great difficulty or set of obstacles in life and is now using the great lion to show his strength. This could be the case, but there are also many other possible explanations. Regardless, this lion definitely makes its appearance known.
This lion tattoo is just as realistic as those before it, but is different in one major way. This lion, as one might notice, is not roaring and does not look particularly threatening at all. Instead, this mighty ruler of the animal kingdom tatted in black and gray appears serene and content. This lion still retains an air of strength and dominance, however, even in this seemingly-peaceful state. This lion tattoo could have any number of different meanings. It is worth mentioning, however, that some realistic lion tattoos are inked out of admiration for this great animal and, more specifically, to draw awareness to the threats the species has faced and continues to face.
Here is a realistic lion tattoo that depicts the lion as calm and majestic. It is a beautiful piece with a significant amount of attention and care given to the great beast’s lush coat and mane. This king looks to be in a serene and satisfied state of mind. The peaceful look on the lion’s face might seem fitting as a tattoo for someone who is hopeful about the future, or perhaps one who is having their tattoo done as a reminder to stay hopeful amidst adversity. As stated in this article’s introduction, some people pick lion tattoos as their chosen way of covering up physical trauma or other scars. These are all excellent reasons to choose the great lion as one’s next tattoo.
This realistic lion tattoo jumps off this man’s skin in a way that can only be understood by seeing it for one’s self. It is composed of light levels of gray shading and soft but detailed application of strong facial features and a flowing mane. Surrounding the head of this great lion are a series of geometric shapes that almost seem to be absorbing it. These shapes are outlined by a network of white lines and the the shapes themselves (mostly hexagons of various sizes) are mostly black. In these ways, the lion is both jumping off of the man’s skin in one way, yet also sinking into the geometric patterns underneath it. This is undoubtedly an interesting and, to those who may not have seen anything like it before, fascinating effect.
This realistic depiction of the mighty lion contains many of the same valuable attributes as those listed previously. It is tattooed with great attention to even the smallest facial details.This includes aspects such as the hair under its chin, the awareness in its eyes and even its wrinkles. It is truly a beautiful portrayal of this majestic animal. One thing that this realistic lion tattoo has that those that have come before it in this list do not, however, is a strong touch of color. With these wonderfully added shades of brown and yellow, this big, mighty cat looks as if he is staring out into the sunset with great wisdom and prowess. While the other lion tattoos look incredible in just black and gray, this one in many ways looks especially realistic and captivating. This is truly a badass tattoo.
Here is a tattoo truly fit for a king. What better way to honor the great lion than with a well done tattoo of the animal fitted with a strong representation of his place of royalty in the animal kingdom: a great big crown. This tattoo is a splendid, noble representation of the lion. The crown upon his head is particularly realistic looking, almost as if it were a photograph.
This realistic lion tattoo is a glorious way to honor a truly incredible animal and it fits quite snugly on this man’s lower arm. The idea of having a lion on this particular part of the body could be considered to be quite thoughtful and creative in some ways as here on this wrist the kingliness of the great lion is shown to all of those who shake hands with or otherwise see this man’s lower arm. When it is on a different area of a man’s body such as the chest, it is certainly still terrific but it is not able to be seen by as many other people.
If you enjoyed these realistic depictions of lion ink but are looking for more eclectic inspiration, click on the links to more galleries and content featuring the King of the Jungle:
- Lion Neck Tattoo Ideas
- Top 83 Lion Tattoo Ideas
- Neo Traditional Lion Tattoo Ideas
- Lion Leg Tattoo Ideas
- Geometric Lion Tattoos