Sign up below to get the latest from Creative Bloq, plus exclusive special offers, direct to your inbox! Creative Bloq is part of Future plc, an international media group and leading digital publisher. While most tattoo artists today use tattoo machines, all of Horimyo’s art work is applied by his own hands. Tattoos have become very popular and it’s nice to see other people that have the same interest.
When not working up a storm in the office, Sammy runs her own music blog and writes for the likes of Drowned in Sound and The 405.
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In recent years, many younger Japanese people have begun embracing tattoos as fashion statements, like people do in many western countries. He also took time to tell us about why he strongly believes in traditional Japanese tattoo and the power of art made by hand. She also thinks that Buffy the Vampire Slayer is probably the best television series ever created. However, there remains a group of traditional Japanese tattoo artists who look at body art as something more than fashion – something spiritual and deeply personal. Especially as a creative - you want something cool that reflects your personality and (perhaps) taste in digital design and artwork.
Houston Patton With over a decade's worth of experience, tattoo artist Houston Patton produces incredible body art designsTattoo artist Houston Patton's designs take concept body art to a whole new level. Patton and creative director Dagny Fox are co-founders of tattoo company Thieves of Tower, which has a breathtaking portfolio of body art. Using landscape and infrastructure for inspiration on the majority of their designs, the pair produce intricate inkings, often using body parts as part of their unique artwork.
Sasha Unisex Sasha Unisex creates gorgeous geometric animal portraits and moreCombining precise shapes and bold, in-your-face colours, these tattoos are quite simply a thing of beauty.
The geometric aspect makes them triumph over the usual tattoo offerings, with Sasha Unisex's creations proving a hit across the world. Petersburg, it seems Sasha is booked up for months in advance with just about every tattoo lover wanting a piece of her art on their body – who can blame them? Kim Rense Rense's tattoos are often inspired by folkloreKim Rense is a tattoo artist based in The Hague, Holland. With a traditional style, Rense manages to put a modern spin on this incredibly detailed, black and white efforts. Inspired by fairy tales and folklore, the designs are magnificent; attention to detail is a real winner here.
Sam Ricketts Ricketts' style flourishes over a range of designsSteadily gaining Instagram followers, Sam Ricketts is a Swindon based artist who's colourful creations have earned him plenty of fans. From full body pieces to smaller, palm-sized executions, his unqiue style is flawless throughout any and all. Opening a new studio in January, we have no doubt his appointment slots will be sought after.
Harriet Tattoo This apprentice shows off her talentsAlthough Harriet is working as an apprentice for Shorditch London based studio Good Times Tattoo, her illustrative, nature-inspired style is already showing tonnes of promise. From her Wind and the Willows tributes to her adorable bunny rabbits, they're an absolute delight to look at.
Jon Boy Jon Boy has tattooed a whole bunch of celebritiesWhen it comes to simplicity, Jon Boy is king.
Based in New York City, he's tattooed the likes of the Kardashians as well as a whole host of other celebrities. Whilst his work mostly consists of quotes and simple line work, it's easy to see why celebs are flocking to his studio.
Esme Loasby Esme enjoys working on big, colourful piecesBased in Northampton, England, Esme Loasby is a resident artist at Alternative Art. She enjoys working on big exciting, colourful projects, with lots of her pieces featuring animals, clocks, fairy-tale characters and floral patterns.
Kenji Alucky There's no denying that stippling tattoo art is absolutely breath-takingTattoo artist Kenji Alucky specialises in the stippling method.
This is where the tattoo design is made by inscribing countless tiny black dots onto the skin to produce something truly remarkable.
Combining an array of influences, his work is spectacularly intricate – producing awe-inspiring patterns and imagery.
Facu Ontivero Facu Ontivero works both as a graphic designer and a tattoo artistWorking as both a graphic designer and tattoo artist, Argentinian creative Facu Ontivero creates gorgeous designs that feature animals, geometric shapes and beautiful pattern work. Paul Booth American artist Paul Booth began his own sign making shop at the age of 15 and subsequently learned airbrushing and Repo work. He's since become one of the most sought-after tattoo artists on the metal scene, working for bands such as Slipknot, Mudvayne, Slayer, Pantera, Soulfly, Lamb of God, and Sepultura. Dmitriy Samohin Hailing from Odessa, Ukraine, Dmitriy Samohin is a master of bold, realistic pieces with incredibly intracate detail. A self-taught artist, he's been in the business for more than 10 years and his workshops are much sought-after at tattoo conventions. Bill Baker Bill Baker is renowned for his large-scale tattoosBill Baker has been tattooing for over 30 years and is the co-owner of Pearl Harbor Gift Shop in Toronto.
Over his career Baker has produced beautiful large-scale tattoos, making them work in his own innovative manner.
Above is a truly stunning piece, influenced by Japanese tattoo art, of a koi surrounded by waves and flowers.
Matt Houston Matt Houston brings his own unique style to traditional tattoo artMatt Houston is a tattoo artist originating from London currently working at Gastown Tattoo Parlor in Vancouver, Canada.
One of our favourite pieces is shown above – a wolf wearing a feathered headdress whilst spitting blood. Jean Le Roux Jean Le Roux takes an original approach to animal and portrait-based tattoo artJean Le Roux has an original illustration style that's generally focussed on animals and portraits, exaggerating the expressions of his subjects in a captivating manner. Jean Le Roux graduated as a graphic designer and followed his passion into illustration, which led to an apprenticeship at Black Garden Tattoo. Gakkin Gakkin's work mashes up traditional styles with manga, graffiti and graphic designGakkin, who works at Harizanmai tattoo studio in Kyoto, takes a new approach to traditional Japanese themes, strongly influenced by manga, graffiti and graphic design.
But although his tattoos are defiantly 21st-century, Gakkins still follows many of the traditional rules of Japanese tattoo design, such as: "Never put momiji [message dolls] and sakura [cherry blossom] in the same drawing", and "Tigers should always go with bamboo". While the background of this design is reminiscent of traditional Japanese prints, the colourful maple and the steaks of bright red on the koi makes it stand out as strikingly modern. Ollie Munden Sugar Skull by Ollie Munden, commissioned by Luke Olney and inked by Into You TattooOllie Munden, or MEGAMUNDEN as he's known to many, is a prolific illustrator and artist and his tattoo art designs have graced the body parts of such designers as Aardman's (and CreativeBloq regular) Gavin Strange. Check out this cool skull design, entitled Sugar Skull, commissioned by Luke Olney and inked by Into You Tattoo. David Hale David Hale's beautiful tattoo work is on a par with his outstanding illustrationsDavid Hale is an artist living in Athens, Georgia, where he runs LoveHawk Studios.
This is just one of his incredible tattoo art designs and its symmetry and almost geometric feel makes it classy for such a large piece. This particular piece is also slightly reminiscent of the work of the brilliant Aske of Sicksystems but in all, Hale is a remarkably original artist.
Horiyoshi III Horiyoshi III continues the irezumi tradition of full-body tattoo designsThis tattoo is a good example of Japanese tattoo design in the irezumi tradition: a full-body tattoo, covering arms, back, upper legs and chest. Horiyoshi III, an artist specialized in this approach, is so famous that there's even a museum dedicated to his art in Yokohama. Jason Donahue San Fran artist Jason Donahue's work has almost an art deco feel to itArtist Jason Donahue works at the Idle Hand tattoo studio in the Lower Haight district of San Francisco.
His minimal use of colour is both subtle and striking, and his style looks great on both smaller hand pieces and larger coverings. David Corden If it's a realistic undead pinup spanning your arm you're after, there's one man to callWhen it comes to detail (and to be honest, creepiness) there's no one better than UK artist David Corden. His gothic pinups are inspired designs that are visual masterpieces in their own right: this amount of detail has to be applauded.
En En gives traditional Japanese tattoo designs a modern lookEn works at Genko Studio in Nagoya, which is well known for his modern spin on traditional Japanese tattoo designs. This illustration features a koi – a symbol of love and a recurring element in traditional Japanese tattoos. Jon Burgerman Martin Fearn's Jon Burgerman tattoo spans from his shoulder to the elbow of his right armHow ace is this tattoo art design from everyone's favourite doodler Jon Burgerman? Burgerman has designed many more pieces of cool body art, all in his unique character art style.
Build a digital double of yourself and map the design onto it, of courseWhen fantasy and concept artist Loic Zimmermann wanted to see how one of his tattoo art designs would look on his body, he recreated himself as a digital double using Maya, ZBrush, Photoshop CS6 and Mental Ray to design and pre-vis a tattoo that was then unwrapped, printed on a carbon paper, and then applied to his real skin with accuracy before the inking could start.
Fat Punk Studio Fat Punk Studio is a master of contemporary tattoo designs – and it's also pretty good at murals, tees and stickersFat Punk Studio is a Somerset-based design studio specialising in T-shirts, prints, giant wall murals and, of course, killer tattoo art designs.
The finished design will run down the client's right arm and, according to the studio, contains loads of personal elements such as roses with Marshall Speaker cones at their centres. On your legNot only is this artist a sublime master of his craft, he also has a very cool name.
Check out this awesome, if gruesome, leg design: vibrant turquoise against pink with clever line work make the characters pop.
Peter Aurisch With an almost sketched, geometric style, Peter Aurisch is the perfect artist if you're looking for an original sleeve designThis design from Peter Aurisch is a great example of the artist's almost sketched, geometric style.
Yellow Blaze Although influenced by tradtional Japanese designs, Shige has created his own original styleThe dragon tattooed on this skull was created by Shige, a self-taught tattooist based in Yokohama, Japan who is the founder of Yellow Blaze Tattoo. While the basis of his work is Japanese history and traditional culture, Shige has created his own original style, which he describes as a never-ending work in progress. Seth Wood Seth Wood's inspired leg design: just one example of the artist's striking use of colourSeth Wood is just one of the nine incredible artists working out of Brooklyn's renowned Saved Tattoo. This design is one of Wood's most recent pieces, garnering comments on Instagram such as 'Insane! Peter Lagergren Bizarre yet brilliantly executed: one of Swedish artist Peter Lagergren's bestWe love this design purely because it's so freakin' bizarre. We can only imagine it's from the mind of Swedish tattoo artist Peter Lagergren or one of his clients. Our Google search for 'Monkey and walrus in hot air balloon' didn't shed any further light on the subject. Alejandro Paul Piel Script (Spanish for 'Skin Script') was designed for tattoos in mind by Alejandro PaulRenowned type designer Alejandro Paul of Sudtipos designed this typeface, called Piel Script, especially for tattoo artists and those wanting a cool script font emblazoned on their body parts. Simply buy the font from Veer or the studio's own site: type your letters and take to your tattoo artist of choice. Ed Perdomo The expression, shading and unique colour palette are all typical of Ed Perdomo's workEd Perdomo is a tattoo artist from Columbia who now resides in Goteborg, Sweden.
Tim Senecal An original colour palette and design that juxtaposes traditional and modern makes this design one of Tim Senecal's most interestingAn unusual, yet stunning design from Tim Senecal. What we love about this is it screams tradition (and has a very Asian feel to it) whilst at the same time having a very distinct and unusual colour palette. Jessica Hische Tattly is a great resource for geeky temporary tattoos, from cursors to RGB spectrums to illustrated typeWe're cheating a bit, as this isn't a permanent tattoo. But it's a superb flourishing geeky illustrated design, and by wearing it you can tell everyone you are into typography.
It's designed by Jessica Hische, and is quite similar to the letterer's own tattoo that adorns her left bicep.
Tattly has a load of designer-themed temporary tattoos: you can even wear a fake Pantone swatch called Tattone 5K1 N. 3KTA Usually working in spray paint or ink, this single colour tattoo was a departure in medium for the artist known as ETKAThe work of Swedish graphic designer and illustrator 3KTA (aka EKTA) is simple, stylish and sometimes fun, and clients include The New York Times, Ogilvy & Mather and Mattel. And although we're not sure the subject will appeal to everyone, US hipsters are embracing this bold, kitsch (and traditional American) style in their thousands.
Whom do you ask for a 'cat in a hat, with pearls arounds its neck, inside an ornate frame'? This hummingbird tattoo is particularly beautiful, being defined near the wrist, bleeding up to subtle pastels near the bicep.
Myke Chambers Myke Chambers travels the world inking his customersIf you'll excuse the pants, check out this intricate (and suitably large) traditional American tattoo design by Myke Chambers. Coverage is very high but the colour work is stunning – as is the detail in the various animal and human portraits that run through the design. Emily Rose Murray Emily Rose Murray: the leading lady of tattoo designAustralian tattoo artist Emily Rose Murray blends a strong comic art-influenced style with some amazing colour and shading work.
We particularly love this design, which is just at the sketch stage – but you can get a full flavour of the Melbourne-based artist's work at her Instagram and Facebook pages.
Grime Grime's body art tattoo designs have set new standards in the industryOne of the greats in the tattoo industry, Grime has been around for more than 20 years. Having started out by painting skateboards, he's very opinionated on the subject of tattoo art, and his masterpieces of body art have set new standards in colour and perception. Amanda Wachob With a background in painting, Amanda Wachob has created a unique brand of tattoo artOriginally a painter, Amanda Wachob has developed a beautifully unique style of tattoo art. Influenced by the work of Hans Hofmann, she allows the organic forms of the body to influence these abstract shapes. Today Wachob works at one of New York's leading parlors Daredevil Tattoo in Manhattan's Lower East Side. Horitata Horitata's work echoes the Edo period, the golden era of Japanese tattoo designBased in Tokyo, Horitata is a huge fan of American design, but his work is mostly inspired by the Edo period (1600-1868), the golden age of traditional Japanese tattoo design. The character here really stands out from the background, making it instantly recognisable, even from a distance.
He specialises in branding, identity, web design, publication design, album covers, packaging and book design.
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