Tagged: Tattoo art

A rose is a rose is a rose

Our guest writer Katie Houghton shares five of her favourite rose inspired tattoos…

 While June may be home to ‘National Corn on the Cob Day’, and you’re god damn gutted that you missed out, June also happens to be the month of the rose, and we’re all over that. A natural emblem of love and passion, roses as tattoos have been one of the most constant designs since ink touched skin. While some signify death, some eternal love, some balance and some signify the relationship between a sailor and his favourite bird (mother dearest), we know that rose tattoos are an anything-kind-of-game, and we’ve decided to find five of our favourites.

 Harriet Heath/Lone Rose Tattoo

 harriet heath 1

I love the plump attitude behind all of Harriet Heath’s work and designs, and the name Lone Rose Tattoo was too good an opportunity to miss on a list of rose tattoos. The tattoo above has sass, it has slant, and the little rose touches on the head band give the whole piece a cute and continental pop that gives her portrait work a recognisable edge.

Tommy Oh!

tommy oh 2

I don’t know a lot about Tommy Oh!, but I don’t think I need to. Provocative and full o’ spunk, his blackwork is bold, it’s brazen and now I want spider webs on all edges. Standing out due to the thickness of leaf, location and line work, Tommy’s work is unapologetic and pricks like a bloody thorn.

Emily Malice: Parliament Tattoo

 emily malice 3

If you’re familiar with the work of the stunning Emily Malice, you’ll know that she’s both saint and sinner combined. Generating provocative work, and bold statement tattoos alongside simple custom designs, Emily’s able to add a firm pop to a botanical rose piece like above that remains feminine, but still has grit and chew.

 Jenna Hayes Tattoo: Hand and Dagger

jenna hayes 4

Give Jenna a rose and she’ll give you a snake. One of the more traditional artists on this list, I think it’s not only the subtle colour work on this piece that stoods out to me, but the blend of hard edge and soft flora. Clearly able to master thick lines with an honest consistency, Jenna Hayes has got me dreaming of pythons and bouquets.

Sophie C’est La Vie

sophie 5

Sophie, you had me at origami. You also had me at elephant origami (with a rose shaped peony for kicks). A tattoo artist that knows colour craft and consistency like the back of her hand, not only does Sophie generate beautiful pieces (from fauna to flora) that fuse great tones, these origami pieces are creative, they’re pieced together perfectly, and can even be converted to koala should you fancy.

Want to frame your tattoos after you die? Now you can!

Peter van der Helm, owner of Walls and Skin a tattoo and graffiti studio in Amsterdam, is offering to preserve tattoos after the owner has died.

The Foundation for Art and Science of Tattooing has had over fifty people already signed up for their preservation service, in which they remove the tattooed skin, pack it in formaldehyde and send it to a laboratory where the water and fat will be removed and replaced with silicone. The tattooed skin will belong to the foundation, it can be put on display or loaned to friends and family of the deceased.

Prices start from 300 euros for a tattoo roughly 10cm in size. You can also buy gift vouchers and cards for the service.

The foundation wishes to collect different styles of tattoos from different artists, thus preserving the stories behind the tattoos. The main reasons for tattoo preservation as stated on their website include:

 the emotional values of the tattoos, the interest in contributing to the history of tattooing, the preservation of the art piece or the artist work and to leave behind a piece of yourself to friends and family father death. 

Image from Tattwords



Kokoro – The Art of Horiyoshi III

Kokoro means heart in Japanese – the feeling or the inner meaning that underpins the Japanese approach, not only to art, but to life as a whole.


Horiyoshi III is a tattoo artist and champion of traditional Japanese culture. He is the essence of kokoro. His artwork is now on display at Somerset House, until 1 July 2012.

jigoku Dayu
Jigoku Dayu

Jigoku Dayu (mineral pigments on silk) – this was my favourite piece in the exhibition. I love the detail in the clothing.


Namakubi (mineral pigment on silk) – I find this picture very deceptive. The colours are soft and feminine, and it is only when you look a little closer that you see the violence and horror.

Tattoo project – Jean-Luc Moerman

Ever looked at a painting, model or political figure and wondered where the tats are?

Untitled 'Kate Moss'
Untitled 'Kate Moss'

I often look at bare skin and think what a lovely blank canvas – and clearly so has artist Jean-Luc Moerman. He’s known for the tattoo technique he applies to iconic images in history – from models and political figures to renaissance paintings and the kamasutra.

I would love to speak to him about his motivations for undertaking such an interesting project and how he picks who/what to ink…

Jean Luc Moerman

'Untitled' kamasutra
'Untitled' kamasutra

Jean-Luc Moerman image

'Untitled' Marilyn Monroe
'Untitled' Marilyn Monroe

His work can be viewed on Flickr.