The most noteworthy characteristic of a watercolor tattoo is its lack of overall defined outlining or hard black ink, with imagery taking its inspiration from the impressionistic free-form style and coloring.
Don’t be fooled by the lack of restriction, however; watercolor tattoos are incredibly calculated and meticulously executed by only the most talented of tattoo artists.
While shading is somewhat lighter than a traditional tattoo, watercolor tattoos are every bit as permanent, requiring only minor touch-ups as the years ensue.
Watercolor tattoo designs are striking for their simulated use of brush strokes, paint splatters, and drippings, with flowers, trees, underwater fish, and various wildlife providing popular subject matter. The works of impressionist masters such as Rembrandt and Monet have also been emulated in watercolor tattoo work, as well as personal portraits of loved ones.
Watercolor ink can be found on the forearms, shoulders, and chest area, and generally work well where skin is the smoothest and less prone to hair growth. Pigments may follow a specific tone and scheme or display all the colors of the rainbow.
A relatively new style of tattooing, the watercolor tattoo is a beautifully poetic way to show one’s devotion to the finer–and less easily defined–things in life. Watercolor tattoos are a visually memorable way to making moving art of one’s body, and leave a lasting impression of his own.