Often referred to as ‘old school’, traditional tattoos are bold, sometimes colourful and eye-catching. They don’t contain light shading work or dainty lines and consist of striking black lines to create a 2D image. Artists these days are able to put their own modern spin on traditional tattoos. They can turn almost any idea or character into a traditional tattoo by using the already established style and applying it to modern day ideas.
Traditional tattoos have a rich history and are often considered the origin of Western tattooing. They were popularised in the early 1900s by sailors and soldiers who were exposed to different cultures who were already tattooing. Popular tattoos amongst the sailors and soldiers were things like swallows, anchors and pin up girls. These motifs were all meaningful however, their timeless nature has meant that people are still choosing to get them today.
Traditional tattoos can be identified by their thick, bold lines and block colour. The colours will usually be reds, blues and yellows. This is because of the limited inks available when tattooing first came around.
Another key aspect of traditional tattoos is their simplicity. When this tattooing style originated, it became extremely popular and the founding artists were clients wanting their skin decorating. Keeping designs simple meant that the artists could get the tattoos out faster and keep up with the demand.
As always, the artist you choose and aftercare are the most crucial things to ensure your tattoo looks great and stays that way!
However, if we’re speaking relative to other tattoo styles, traditional tattoos are often considered the best style for longevity. This is because of how much ink is packed in. Some fall out is not uncommon, though. You may experience some of the heavy blackwork looking a little patchy when it’s healed. A great way to avoid this is by following our after care advice as well as making sure you don’t over moisturise your tattoo.