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Vanishing Tattoo

The Vanishing Tattoo is the largest and most critically acclaimed tattoo resource online. Covering the A-Z of the most popular tattoo designs & symbols, and all the tattoo history and tattoo culture that you love, the Vanishing Tattoo will amuse, inspire and astound you.


Max Cady’s movie tattoos, Cape Fear

When presenting a character in a film, directors and costume designers think very carefully about every last detail: what color shirt, what brand of shoes, how mussed the hair. Maybe this is why some of the coolest and most apt tattoos we’ve ever seen have popped up in movies, from the original knuckle tattoos to this year’s hottest movie sensation (hint: dragons). From the silly to the terrifying, the ominous to the controversial, click through to see our ten favorite tattoos on film, and since we know there are hundreds of great ones out there, be sure to let us know if we’ve missed any of your own favorites.

Max Cady’s myriad tattoos, Cape Fear

Funnily enough, it’s Robert Mitchum, the actor who played Harry Powell, and who also starred in the original 1962 Cape Fear, who peers at De Niro’s chest and shrugs, “I don’t know whether to look at him or read him.” Fair enough — as Cady jokes later, “there isn’t much to do in prison except desecrate your flesh,” especially when you’re just biding your time until you can exact your proper justice.

read the whole article here

A senior curator at the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa explains the cultural significance of Polynesian tattoos, and the implications they have on MMA fighters.

Samoan tattooing

Tattooing, Samoa by Thomas Andrew, circa 1890-1910, Samoa. (Collection of Museum of New Zealand)

In 1929, in an essay titled Ornament and Crime, Adolf Loss wrote that “People with tattoos not in prison are either latent criminals or degenerate aristocrats.” However, in the 21st century, and worldwide, it seems the once marginalized art of tattooing, has gained new respectability. It has moved from the edges of western societies to the center of attention, particularly in popular culture. Tattooed athletes in professional televised sports such as football, basketball and martial arts have also given tattooing visibility. The art and artists of tattooing are accessible to wider and more diverse audiences. Tattoos are a key part of people’s identities, their personal stories and lives. Some tattoos are decorative, others represent people’s cultural or family heritage. Through mass media they have become familiar images, but do we really understand what they mean? read the full story here

Tattoo artist Dongkyu Lee created the most amazing portrait tattoo we’ve ever seen, replicating a photo of Kobe Bryant on someone’s leg. The finished tattoo might even look better than reality.

Kobe Bryant tattoo done by artist Dongkyu Lee

Amazing Kobe Bryant tattoo done by artist Dongkyu Lee

He’s also done stunning portraits of fighters Floyd Mayweather, Mike Tyson and Jon Jones. See more examples of Lee’s work here.


Photo by Vince Hemingson

Four years ago this month, 100 hundred heavily tattooed people and 11 of Vancouver’s best photographers came together for The Tattoo Project:  Body. Art. Image:  a three-day event at the Vancouver Photo Workshops described as “a synthesis of portraiture and tattoo art that poses the eternal question, Who am I?”  The body of work born from the project explores tattooed bodies via diverse photographic philosophies. Vince Hemingson, creator of The Tattoo Project (as well as many other wonderful projects), has said that the images not only reflect who the subjects are but also the photographers, from their differing approaches to lighting, mood, and color to different methods for engaging the subjects. The subjects were quite diverse themselves and not just today’s standard “tattoo model” fare.  

Read the rest of the article as Vince explains his inspiration behind The Tattoo Project

selfie-tattoosTo make matters worse, she’s doing duck face

A duck face is not a thing that should be immortalized. And yet a sad soul appears to have gotten a tattoo of her pursed lip taking a selfie—which might be a modern-day sign of the apocalypse.

We don’t know the context, but this photo has been making its rounds around the Internet. Hopefully it isn’t giving any Snapchatters ideas for their weekend itineraries.

It looks like millennials haven’t learned the lessons of Gen-Xers about NOT tattooing digital trends on their bodies. Hopefully this woman will regret her choices slightly less than those who marked up their bodies with now-defunct websites during the early dot-com days.

Julia Roberts Explains Her Tattoos.

Julia Roberts tattoos46-year-old Julia Roberts recently told Ellen DeGeneres that she has four tattoos, which consist of the names of her three children as well as her husband’s initials.

“Aren’t you just rethinking me completely now?” Roberts asked after revealing the fact she has ink.

“Some things I can tell you the answer to, and some things I’ll tell you later,” she said when Ellen asked about their locations.

Roberts added that she had husband Danny Moder’s initials tattooed before their marriage in 2002. “We were brave or idiotic,” Roberts said.

Check out more pictures of her tattoos here.

Rita Ora tattoosBritish singer-songwriter, and soon to be thespian in ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’, Rita Ora didn’t allow the controversy surrounding photographer Terry Richardson to stop her from shooting with him.  Quite the contrary.  Ora happily dropped her top to show off her impressive collection of tattoos and was all gung-ho to go full thumbs up with the Terrymeister.

For all of her tattoos and more story see: The Daily Mail Online and Terry Richardson’s website Terry’s Diary

divorce-tattoos-2According to California divorce attorney, Myra Fleischer, nothing says, “I don’t love you anymore!” like a little post-nuptial tattoo action.  Women have been the fastest growing segment of the tattoo community for more than a decade and according to Fleischer, the latest post-celebratory cutting the knot act for many women is to get a tattoo commemorating that fact.

“Divorce coach Cindy Holbrooke of Ridgecrest, California says celebrating your divorce with a tattoo (or any other way) is a show of love and compassion for yourself.”

Read more at Communities Digital News