Cameo tattoos are an intricate choice for the true romantic. Channel the charm of a bygone era with a design that’s historical and detailed.

Cameo tattoos can depict personal meaning and be drawn from exact portraits for even more sentiment.

Add jewelry to your body and keep it there. Cameos are always classy.

Cameo Tattoo Designs - Cameo Tattoos
Photo via @tattoosnob

History of Cameos

Cameos can depict many meanings. From desire and love to honor and prestige, cameos trace 300 years B.C. in Egypt from carvings much like ancient petroglyphs. Once the popularity of seashell carving grew, cameos have come to showcase the beauty and profiles of women in a much more elegant manner.

Enchanting gods and goddesses and biblical representations have been showcased in cameo carvings. Eros, the Greek god of love created the universe with Chaos. While women once wore cameos to invite the flirtations of suitors, many infamous men have been captivated by their beauty as well.

Pope Paul II’s own death was attributed to the excessive wearing of cameo jewelry.

Legend believes his hands were so cold from the many stones he wore that he eventually caught the chills and suffered an untimely passing.

Napoleon was also lured by the beauty of cameos and wore a piece to his own wedding. Eventually, he opened a school in Paris to teach the art of cameo carving.

Depicting Loved Ones in Cameos

Mothers, daughters, and wives make obvious choices for cameo tattoo depictions. Work with an artist and scavenge up the best portrait photograph that you can find for the best result. Consider adding special details to your cameo tattoo to make it even more meaningful.

Birthstones and favorite colors can be incorporated into a cameo design for more sentimental value. Rosary beads or a strand of pearls can showcase the cameo design for a jewelry-inspired tattoo. Consider ankle and wrist placement for something unique.

While many cameo pieces represent female form don’t limit your ideas to just that. Mythical beasts and creatures can be drawn into cameo shapes and so can imagery such as flora and vines. Butterflies, battle scenes, and enchanting forests can house finer tattoo designs such as mushrooms, helmets, and military commemorative sentiments.

Placement of Cameo Tattoos

Men and women can both wear cameo tattoo designs. Bear in mind the ideal placement of your piece will depend on many different things.

Try to visualize your body canvas years down the road and perhaps any additional body art that may eventually be added. Your tattoos should work together to create an even and flowing canvas.

For this reason, cameos can be placed in areas that have a natural curve for a flattering and attractive tattoo. Lower back regions and hips make a sensual placement for cameo tattoos.

For a more fashionable tattoo statement, place your cameo right where you can enjoy the beauty of its detail. The collarbone and inner wrists are edgy places that suit the design of a cameo and the steampunk lifestyle well.

For men, bicep cameos can be a new spin on the traditional Old School pin-up girl designs. Or consider a back tattoo and incorporate a much larger piece. Chest pieces can also be a hot way for men to showcase the fine details of a cameo.

Add Small Details

Rather than ink your love with a name tattoo, consider a cameo for a less obvious form of devotion. Wedding dates can be inscribed upon cameos for personal meaning and lovers can choose matching cameo designs for a unique take on a couple’s tattoo. Timepieces can also be scribed into your design, so consider a special moment and mark it eternal in a depiction of stone, shell, or marble.

Honor her true beauty and ink the silhouette of her bust and you’ll have a piece of her heart forever.

Skull Tattoos Design Silver Rings

Skull Tattoos Design Silver Ring

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