In many cases, floral designs are feminine and reveal an artistic spirit and admiration for nature. Depending on the types of flowers used, the floral pattern can also be masculine. Whether a feminine or masculine tone is intended, flowers are a symbol of the cycle of life, nature, youth, and beauty. Flowers are also used as a token of celebration and commemorate birthdays and holidays. Even more, flowers are a representation of renewal and healing, love and loyalty. Floral tattoos may include multiple blooms, often arranged in a continuous pattern in the background or foreground of larger pieces. The flowers included can all be the same or various types may be added into the design. When the blooms are identical, the tattoo invokes unity and consistency but when they are varied, the tattoo and the meaning becomes more complex. A field of roses is a classic and romantic design that often is intended as a symbol of femininity and love. It can be chosen specifically for the aesthetic of the flower, a representation of the romantic, and be rendered in any color but most often a red hue. Foliage is included in realistic floral tattoos to create a complete image that can be masculine or feminine. The classic appearance of a rose or other full-petaled flower is often added to other tattoo designs to add a sense of completion to the piece. Lilacs, lilies, orchids, and other beautiful flowers serve a similar purpose and all complement each other in a large, colorful floral design. Lotus flowers with many petals are a symbol of life and reincarnation.
Several lotus flowers are usually depicted with other Hindu, Jainist, or Buddhist images to create a piece that represents samsara, the continuous wheel of life. Black and grey floral tattoos are a very romantic design that signifies love and intimacy. Greywash floral tattoos utilize a classic theme that incorporates realism and tones down the femininity of the design. The lack of color lends a sober and less cheerful appearance that may represent determined and motivated spirit. Bolder and vivid colors symbolize life and energy and are more representative of a bright and sunny disposition. Some tattoo designs use only the contour lines of the flower, composing the tattoo out of outlines only. This design is simple and delicate and reveals a down-to-earth personality. Multiple types of flowers placed together are often used to convey a landscape that reveals where the tattoo recipient grew up or another memorable place. State or provincial flowers that represent the location are a tribute to one’s home. Wildflowers from a specific region are beautifully colored and appear bright, fresh and natural. Large flowers with many petals like carnations can be chosen to look full and well-detailed. The blooms may also be designed in greyscale for a less cheerful and more sombre tone. The lack of color is simpler and delicate and can signify mourning and remembrance, especially if a name or dates are included. Because flowers are used for the commemoration of life, they are an appropriate addition or main focus to a tribute or memorial tattoo.
Lilies, especially calla lilies, are known as the funeral flower and an signify remembrance and celebration. Floral tattoos can be designed stylistically to look more like an illustration or print or pattern rather than the realistic image. A pattern will often use the same flower over and over and give a wallpaper-like effect. This type of motif is popular with designers who work with similar patterns in their daily life. The motif is also a symbol of consistency and continuation which can offer a sense of comfort and stability. Geometric line work can be added to modern, artistic designs, or to realistic renderings to create a more modern appearance. The floral design can be compartmentalized into geometric shapes to deconstruct the flower and simplify it further. Shapes may also be added to a greywash floral tattoo or a simple outline of a bouquet of flowers to create a more modern appearance. The part of the image encased in a triangle or other shape may be colored to add interest while the rest of the design is left without color. This idea may symbolize finding moments of clarity and beauty in dull or discontented moments. Lace patterns or chains and jewelry are incorporated into flower tattoo designs for a feminine feel and to vintage designs that are less dimensional than others. Birds or butterflies are sometimes included as well to introduce more natural elements into the design, revealing a spirit that feels most at ease outdoors.
Feminine floral tattoos utilize softer colors that appear more like traditional décor or a romantic painting. The flowers are generally done realistically to emphasize the natural beauty of the blooms and to keep with the traditionally artistic theme. More modern floral tattoos may use a watercolor effect with blots of color that bleed from the figure of the flower.More masculine floral tattoos are done in greyscale and are done in a traditional tattoo style reminiscent of Sailor Jerry designs. In some cases, they include more foliage than blooms and feature words and phrases that are significant to the individual. Hibiscus floral patterns, or Hawaiian flower patterns, are often considered masculine especially when rendered graphically rather than realistically.
This type of design may incorporate a tribal-style, emphasizing the masculine theme with the bold black line work.Throughout time, specific flowers have accumulated different meanings according to various traditions and legends. Typical to most Western traditions, roses are a symbol of passion and love, carnations also symbolize love but also distinction, daffodils are a symbol of rebirth, daisies and baby’s breath are often associated with innocence and childhood, calendula is healing and undying love for those who have passed, an iris represents faith and wisdom, violets symbolize loyalty, and chrysanthemum is a symbol of friendship. These are only a few examples of the countless types of flowers and their meanings.
Here are some of the best floral tattoo artists according to our research. If you think we should add anyone to the list or if you see anything that should be edited, contact us by clicking here
Taylor – Fort Worth, Texas
Sara Kay – Seattle, Washington
Mary Joy – San Francisco, California
Quentin Lee – Louisville, Kentucky
Anthony Reyes – Tucson, Arizona
Lesley Diane – Indianapolis, Indiana
Vinh Huyn – San Francisco, California
Alexis Witt – Seattle, Washington
Dorothy Lyczek – Brooklyn, New York
Scott Campbell – NYC
Tonya Vyeda – San Francisco, California
Nicole Eveland – Raleigh, North Carolina
Megon Shoreclay – Seattle, Washington
Kyle DeCory – Seattle, Washington
Eric Sparrow – Charlotte, North Carolina
Steven Kissinger – Seattle, Washington
Ben Matthews – San Francisco, California
Anderson Luna – NYC
Matt Barnett – Columbus, Ohio
Annelise Kinney – Portland, Oregon
Amber Bananafish – Louisville, Kentucky