Remember those absolutely beautiful watercolor tattoos we talked about a while back? Lately, I’ve been thinking about other unique ways tattoos have been enhanced and made fresh, so when I spotted the above silhouette tattoo on Tumblr, I was so excited–I had never seen something quite like it before. Sure, I had seen lots of solid black tattoos (I have some myself), but this was such an interesting way to use colors, patterns, and shapes. And naturally, it’s a cat, so I was thrilled.
Turns out, tons of people have gotten beautiful silhouette tattoos that offer a gorgeous blend of that vintage cameo look with the more modern twist of it being a tattoo. Whether you’re getting a tattoo of your favorite Breaking Bad character or the lipstick you always wear, doing so via such a cool style looks fresh and crisp. Check these out if you’re looking to feel inspired! Plus, these are probably the best possible candidate for trying out using those little tan line stickers.
1. Ariel From The Little Mermaid
I have seen numerous Disney tattoos in my semi-brief millennial life, but I have never seen one quite like this. It’s got all the colors and the shapes (even the shell bra), so you know exactly who it is and what movie she’s from, but it is still so minimalistic.
2. Geometric Bear
The colors here are so vivid, perfectly coordinating with the modern geometric pattern on the bear. My favorite is the bold orangey-red used for the back paws, as well as the striking gradient used in the front left leg.
3. Leg Cameos
I find these thigh tattoos so romantic, even though I have no clue whether they’re intended to represent the wearer’s parents, the wearer’s partner, strangers, Angelina, and Brad… who knows? But it doesn’t really matter anyway because they’re amazing regardless.
4. Dripping Bridge
This is a more abstract tattoo that combines a clear image of a tree-surrounded bridge with a girl (presumably) walking upon it, then adds the intriguing element of long, thin drips from the branches. It’s two parts lovely and one part creepy (so, 100% perfect).
5. Cameo Girl
I love how this is simultaneously simple with its pretty silhouette of woman’s profile (right down to the long lashes), yet very ornate with its surrounding “frame.” According to Pinterest, it was done at the Hope And Glory tattoo studio, so kudos to them for pulling off such a cool piece of body art.
6. The Little Mermaid
Another Ariel tattoo! Even though I am well aware of how many people love The Little Mermaid, I was nevertheless surprised to see just how many tattoos there are of Ariel–there was at least a half-dozen in the “silhouette” category alone! But they’re all so very pretty, so I couldn’t help but include a couple here.
7. Couple Cameo Tattoos
I can’t even handle this. This is approximately as cute as that Game of Thrones couple tattoo I fell in love with a couple of months ago, oh my goodness. Getting a cameo of your partner’s face and your partner getting yours? Infinitely more creative than their name and anniversary date.
According to Pinterest, this woman got her tattoo for her sisters. Even though it appears simple, this type of tattoo is deceptively difficult since it has to be so precise and smooth-lined; this one is a great example of how wonderful it can look. Can you imagine if the legs had gotten fuddled with or the head sizes were off?
9. The Cat!
Like I said, this photo by Chad Lenjer features the tattoo (done at Black Metal Tattoo) that first made me look into the silhouette tattoo style.
10. Ships Ahoy
While I have encountered plenty of nautical tattoos, this one of a large ship sailing into the twilight is incredible. Just look at that water.
These bird silhouettes are basically what it looks like whenever I attempt to take a picture of birds, except these are much prettier and don’t have 18 Instagram filters on top of the photo. It’s simple but precise.
12. Tree Arm
The fact that this guy is playing up his forearm’s tree tattoo by accenting it with a gold watch is making me hope I swipe right for him someday. C’mom universe, make it happen.
13. Birds Flying
A similar tattoo to #11, except with this one, the birds are flying up the wearer’s arms which creates a beautiful effect.
14. Giraffe Tattoo
What a creative, simple way to convey the meaning of your tattoo!
15. Tree Fadeout
While I have admittedly been going a little ombre overboard lately, I find this ombre tattoo (i.e., it’s just fading out towards the bottom purposefully) to be incredible.
16. Another Cat!
Just for good measure.