Negative Space Tattoo Meaning, Design & Ideas

If you are looking for an amazing way to have your tattoo idea designed on your skin, then you’ll definitely want to consider getting a negative space tattoo. These designs make the subject matter stand out in a very different and noticeable way.

These are the types of tattoos that people get when they want something different and they want them to turn their heads. On this page, we will take a look at exactly what negative space tattoos are and some of the most popular design options.

The key to all negative space tattoos is to use your natural skin color for the lightest parts of your design, often the subject of the piece. For example, you could get a group of trees in your design and have the outline of an animal made, with the animal being the color of your skin. The colored parts of the design aren’t insignificant, but the attention is meant to be on the negative space in the design.

What’s really interesting about negative space tattoos is that you would think that the eye would be drawn to the darker parts of the image, but in reality, our brains are programmed to see the image inside. Even in extremely large negative space designs, you the eye will go right to those lighter parts of the image and we will process those parts first. This is most definitely helped by the shading process done on these designs, which is why an experienced artist should always do this type of tattoo.

Some people think that there is actually ink in those “blank” areas of negative space tattoos, but that wouldn’t be as attractive and is one of the reasons why these designs are so popular. It doesn’t necessarily make the tattoos cheap by any means, but they would be more expensive (and probably less appealing) if those blank spaces were filled with ink. Many people do assume that there is ink in those blank areas, which is pretty cool if you think about it.

One of the many types of negative space tattoos that people like to get is animal tattoos. This is because there are a lot of different nature tattoos that can work as the background and it’s easy to cut out animal shapes in them. Leaves work very well for this, as do grass and trees. Plus, animal tattoos are all the rage right now, so the negative space option gives people a unique way to get these very popular animal tattoos.

If you were thinking about getting a small symbol of any kind, the negative space tattoo style might be great for you since it will allow you to have a distinctive tattoo of a well-known symbol. For example, there are a lot of heart tattoos around the world right now, but not too many of them are made in this style. Even just covering an area of your body with black ink and cutting out the symbol you want would give it a nice look that is probably unique.

Tribal tattoos can also work quite well with the negative space tattoo style since you can still get the bold line work made popular by that style while also creating some very sweet negative space designs. Really, any design style that has a lot of lines and covers the skin can work as a negative space tattoo since all you’ll have to do is cut out whatever image you want to fit inside of those designs.

Another interesting option that you have is to get a portrait made in the blank space of a negative space tattoo. These work brilliantly in that cut-out style that we keep talking about, but they can also look great as simple outlines. Since faces have that skin tone, all you have to do is shade in some of the details of the face and boom, you have a nice-looking and inexpensive negative space tattoo.

This works very well for both cartoony and realistic portrait tattoos, so definitely consider it if you are already planning on getting someone’s face inked on your skin.

The list really does go on and on with these designs. What’s important is that you get it designed in a way that makes that blank space stand out. You might think that it will regardless of the design, but it actually takes quite a bit of skill to make this work. Sure, the eye is drawn to the blank space, but will the eye stop and recognize the content of that space? It’s up to you, your tattoo artist, and perhaps an outside artist to figure out how to best make your negative space tattoo look great.

Regardless of the negative space tattoo, you absolutely have to have a top tattoo artist help you through the design process and do the work for you. Even if you think you can draw your design up perfectly, you still want a good tattoo artist since they will know how to make it pop on your skin. These are the types of designs that can be ruined with one minor mistake, so hiring an experienced tattoo artist in your area should be a priority if you want to ensure that you get a tattoo that you’ll love.

Negative space tattoos definitely aren’t for everyone, but plenty of people will really like the look of these designs and the fact that they have a unique way to get the tattoo they’ve always wanted. As we mentioned above, there are thousands upon thousands of tattoos that can work in this style, but it’s up to you to decide if your tattoo idea will look better or worse in this style.

We hope you now have a good feel for what negative space tattoos are and whether it’s a good style idea for you. If you do plan on getting one, just be sure that you take your time throughout the planning process and choose an artist whom you know you can trust to make your tattoo look fantastic.

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