The Tree of Life is one of those ideas that permeates culture, regardless of its origin. It has reached through multiple cultures, religions, and philosophies, and while it has different meanings in each culture, and different visual representation throughout the entire spectrum, the core concept is unchanging.
The Tree of Life represents the interconnections between all life, and it shows that all knowledge, hope, life, and love came from the same source.
It has many names throughout history, including the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, the Tree of Immortality, and the Cosmic Tree. It is known to represent the largest ideas of human nature, like salvation, oneness, wisdom, abundance, progression, and eternity.
When a tattoo artist creates a Tree of Life, they usually draw the branches and roots of the tree as intertwining circles, which helps allude to the theme of cyclical life and progressive growth. These tattoos are usually deeply spiritual, and they tend to have true meaning to those who get them. The Tree of Life is perhaps the most well-known and easily recognizable symbol on the planet.
It is used in pop culture all the time, and it has many famous iterations, like the Tree of Souls found in the blockbuster movie ‘Avatar’.
1. Black Ink Tree of Life Tattoos
Just as the Tree of Life images are inherently compelling, there is something fundamentally appealing about black work tattoos. The bold lines and stark contrast that is created using this, most limited of color palettes, is perfectly suited to these sacred trees.
Some pieces use ink to create large swaths of black, utilizing unadorned negative space to complete the designs and help the tattoo pop. Other pieces use fine lines and a meticulous application of details to create interesting designs that draw the eye in and reveal an intricacy that is both surprising and visually pleasing. These tattoos are great examples of what is possible with black ink.
2. Forearm Tree Of Life Tattoos
When thinking about a tattoo, it’s absolutely necessary to take proper placement into consideration for a couple reasons. Many people need to consider their family’s attitudes regarding ink, while others work in industries that prohibit visible tattoos. Unless you want to wear long sleeves for the rest of your life, placement is worth thinking about.
That being said, the forearm is becoming a mare popular spot to get ink: these pieces can be easily hidden for weddings and job interviews, but all you have to do is roll up your sleeves to show off some ink. These Tree of Life tattoos demonstrate how thoughtful placement can enhance the overall appeal of a piece.
3. Upper Arm Tree Of Life Tattoos
The upper arm and bicep have been some of the most common places to get ink for decades, and it’s easy to understand why. The upper arm, leading onto the shoulder provides an artist a large canvas to work, and the musculature of the bicep responds quickly to exercise and training.
The back of the arm, on the triceps, is also a spot that is gaining popularity for tattoos. While the wearer won’t see the ink everyday this placement ensures everyone behind you in line at the grocery store will get an eyeful. Tree of Life designs can also be created that perfectly follow the natural lines of the upper arm to create more dynamic and interesting tattoos.
4. Leg Tree Of Life Tattoos
More and more people are choosing to get ink on their legs these days, and for good reason. Some people want to get ink on their legs because it is easier to cover with slacks, while for others their legs are just the next step on their life -long journey to cover their body with ink.
These Tree of Life tattoos placed on the legs also create symbolic significance thanks to the role the legs play as the platform that provides stability to the entire body. This symbolism provides a great opportunity to incorporate roots into the designs, deepening the significance of the piece while creating a more interesting tattoo at the same time.
5. Calf Tree Of Life Tattoos
The calf muscles are some of the more prominent muscles regularly on display in daily life, right behind biceps and forearms. Scientists use calf muscles as an indicator of general health and fitness thanks to the direct correlation between calf diameter and overall muscle density in the rest of the body.
There is also statistical evidence to suggest that women find well-built calves some of the more attractive muscles on a man’s body, so, you might as well decorate them. The tree of Life tattoos are perfect for the calf, thanks to the way the natural shape and lines of the area can be used to enhance these designs.
6. Back Tree Of Life Tattoos
The back has long been a popular place for tattoos for a number of reasons. The first and most obvious of these is that fact that the back provides the single largest canvas on the body; for this reason many people choose to get large, striking designs that encompass the entire back. There is also a symbolic reason for getting back tattoos. Many people choose to get designs on their back that they feel can act as protection by “watching their back”.
7. Chest Tree Of Life Tattoos
The chest is a perfect place to get tattoos. There are few parts of the body that so perfectly convey the importance of an image than the chest, specifically over the heart. Whether it is the name of a loved one, an inspirational quote or a stylized Tree of Life, when an image is placed over the heart there is little doubt about the significance the piece holds for the wearer. Applied in different styles with a variety of techniques, these tattoos demonstrate how appealing these designs look on the chest.
8. Side Tree Of Life Tattoos
Another placement that is gaining popularity uses the sides of the stomach and chest as a canvas that is nearly as large as the back. The large size and variety of different lines created by the rib cage, abdominal muscles and outer pectoral provide a skilled artist with plenty of interesting opportunities to utilize the natural shape of the body.
9. Colorful Tree Of Life Tattoos
At the end of the day, tattoos are about self-expression, and some people want their designs to be as bright and vibrant as their personalities. While the different styles and approaches to color tattoos are as varied and diverse as the artists that employ them, one style has continued to gain popularity.
By using a loose, illustrative approach the effect of watercolors being applied to the body is created, to great effect. Bold, black line work is often incorporated to give the impression of the ink breaking free of the outline and running “off the page”. These tattoos use this, among other strategies, to create one of a kind Tree of Life designs.
10. Dotwork Tree Of Life Tattoos
Another interesting trend in the tattoo world uses a meticulous application of dots to create the variations in tones and shading that produce these interesting designs. These Tree of Life tattoos successfully use this approach to create these stunning pieces that are a testament to the skill and dedication of the artists.
11. Innovative Black Ink Tree of Life Tattoos
The world of tattoos is an ever changing discipline that is constantly challenging what is possible when it comes to permanently applying ink to skin. Thanks to the thousands of talented artists that are endlessly pushing the limits of the art form, the designs grow bigger, bolder and more mind blowing.
These artists take that tradition of innovation and use black ink and a variety of techniques and approaches to create unique tattoos dedicated to these mystical symbols of life. These pieces demonstrate that vivid colors are not necessary to make compelling designs that help redefine the discipline of tattoo art.
Tree of Life Tattoo FAQs
What does the Tree of Life symbolize?
Humans are meaning makers; we are constantly looking for ways to comprehend and incorporate the world around us into a cohesive understanding of the universe. This is how the variety of different rituals and customs that form the basis of human culture developed. While the endless diversity of meaning attached to different symbols is staggering, there are some so deeply entrenched in the human psyche that they pop up in different cultures separated by time and distance.
The Tree of Life is one of these symbols, known as archetypes.
Evidence of this concept has been found in Ancient Egypt as well as featuring prominently in the Celtic traditions of Ireland where it is known as the Crann Bethadh. The Tree of Life is also found in a number of sacred traditions from the Fertile Crescent, in what is now modern day Iraq and Syria. Similar imagery with parallel symbolism can be found in the pre-Colombian cultures in Meso-America and North America hinting at some deeper connection to this concept that permeates human existence.
The Tree of Life, World Tree and Cosmic Tree are all names that describe this same concept. This design represents the interconnected nature of the world, with all the different life on this planet falling under the eaves of this mystical tree. This tree provides a physical representation of the divine nature of all life, from the heights of humanity all the way to the lowliest beetle, we are all one cosmic entity.
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