In recent years, chest tattoos have risen in popularity. Usually, the subject matter for these pieces is very personal. Near and often over the heart, pieces will display the deep feelings or beliefs of the wearer.
Memorial tattoos are common on the chest, as is religious imagery. Large sections of scripture and literature go well on the chest and can be accompanied by other images as well.
The chest also provides a large, consistent surface of skin allowing for larger pieces. While these complex tattoos are the more traditional art seen on the chest, smaller pieces have become more popular as tattoos have spread to the broader population. An example of this can be seen with memorial chest tattoos. The themes are similar, but feature small dates instead of full scale portraits or iconography.
Some of the popularity of chest tattoos can be attributed to the obvious physical appeal of highlighting an area of the body that is worthy of showing off, making the well-defined natural lines even more prominent.
A constant concern for any tattoo wearer is placement and how it will affect their professional wardrobe. It is very easy to cover up a chest tattoo, leaving it to only be exposed in specific situations.
One caveat to chest tattoos, the skin is very sensitive and these tattoos rank among the most painful.