Single line drawing and tattoos are a fairly modern phenomenon. As with any tattoo, this should be a carefully considered decision. Remember to take your time when making the decision. You will be living with the tattoo for a long time. Make sure it is the right tattoo for you. Having something permanently on your body is a big decision, and should be carefully considered. Here are 30 single line tattoo ideas and inspiration.
Fashion is transient, Style is timeless.
Below you will see many ideas I have collected together, and I would suggest you do the same. Collect as many examples as you can, and as you go through them, gradually narrow your choice down until you are left with the right design for you. Maybe something will jump out at you, if so, put it on one side, it may well be your final choice, but it shouldn’t stop you from continuing to look.
Things To Consider
I have listed some of the things to consider with any tattoo choice below, but with this kind of tattoo, the skill of the tattooists line work is the primary consideration. Some tattooists have incredible colour control, Some artists specialise in the sort of graduated shading vital with black and grey tattoo’s, but it is the skill and control with which they achieve smooth even lines that is the biggest concern with these tattoos. As I have said before, finding the right tattooist for the job should be your primary concern. No tattooist is the best at everything. Finding someone who specialises in the kind of tattoo you want will often result in the best results.
Consider where you want the tattoo – not all tattoos fit in certain places. The shape of the tattoo should complement the shape of the area the tattoo is to be done.
Some people want the tattoo on show all the time, and will choose an area that isn’t covered by clothes so much, for others, having the tattoo on show is less important, and the ability to cover it when needed may be part of the decision. Remember, there is no such thing as the right place or the right tattoo that will fit everyone, tattoos are a very personal thing, and time spent making sure it is the right design for you, in the place you want it, may well save years of heartache later.
Too many people spend time regretting a rash decision. Whatever you do, don’t make that decision when you are drunk. Any professional tattooist will simply refuse to do the tattoo if you arrive at the studio drunk, and this isn’t just a matter of avoiding people making poor decisions. Alcohol thins the blood, so will cause more bleeding, which will effectively dilute the pigment in the inks. Colours will never be as vivid, and can look washed out and old very quickly.
Finding Right Tattooist
When you have found a design, you need to find the right tattoo artist, and this can be a minefield. A professional artist will not shy away from questions, and should happily show you examples of what you want that he or she has done, if they can’t or won’t, walk away and find another artist. As tattoos have become more common and acceptable, there is a much bigger choice of artists. If you can, find an artist who specialises in the sort of design you want. This will always give you the best results.
Try not to get too hung up on price either, I figured out a long time ago this can be really misleading. Some tattooists work much faster than others. With a small tattoo it may well be you are given a fixed price, which makes comparison easier, but even if the hourly rate charged is larger, the speed they work might mean the tattoo will become cheaper overall. Spending a little more may mean the difference between being proud and being disappointed in the finished product. Too many people end up regretting tattoos they have had.
Time & Ageing
Another thing to consider is the effect time will have on a tattoo. Some areas of the body shed and replace skin much faster than others, if a tattoo is done on the hands or elbows for example, the design is likely to fade much faster. The design itself can also make a huge difference over time.
However good the tattooist is, even when the tattoo is done perfectly, over time, lines will spread. What was once a complex and detailed fine line tattoo can become blurred and more solid looking, as the lines spread and the gaps between lines become less defined.
Detail is great, but should be balanced against the knowledge that all tattoos will spread to a certain extent, imagine what the design you have chosen will look like drawn with a blunt pencil instead of a sharp one, because this is what your tattoo is likely to end up looking like over time.
Good Tattooist VS Bad Tattooist
I have seen many a tattoo that was originally a dark but detailed design, end up looking like a dark splodge of ink, as all the lines spread and just form a blob of undefined colour. This can be particularly bad if a poorly trained tattooist goes in a little too far with the needles.
The aim of the tattooist is the place the ink in the layer of skin called the dermis. This is the 2nd layer of skin down, underneath the outer layer of skin called the epidermis. If the tattooist doesn’t go in far enough, although the colour may initially look vivid, it will fade very quickly.
On the other hand, below the dermis, is a layer of subcutaneous fat and if the tattooist goes too deep and the ink enters this layer, any idea of detail will be lost very quickly. The ink spreads in the fatty tissue. This is bad news, difficult to cover, and can also leave scar tissue from the excess damage caused to the outer layers of skin too.
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