Tattoo Lettering

Published on April 15, 2014 by Jodie Michalak

Are you considering a tattoo lettering design?


Whether you wish to scribe your favorite quotes, song verse or Psalms, finding the right font is nearly just as important as the written context. Don’t be in such a hurry to say what you want to say, take a look at the following tattoo lettering tips, and then find an artist who's worthy of penning it.


Where to Find Tattoo Lettering Font


Most tattoo artists who specialize in tattoo lettering have a portfolio packed with their work. From Old English designs and calligraphy, there are thousands of unique handwriting styles.


To narrow down your artist selection, begin looking at their signature hand and determine if their style is befit for your statement. If not, ask your artist to create a custom tattoo design that works with more of what you have in mind. You’ll want to play around with size, style and positioning several times until the sentiment is ideal.


Other places to search for lettering styles are online tattoo font galleries. There are literally thousands of unique handwriting designs that can be converted into a permanent tattoo lettering design, often free of charge.


For the more sentimental, using the handwriting of a loved one makes a very heartfelt and expressive statement. You can opt for the penmanship of your young child, your parents, or even your lover. So long as you have an attachment to that person, their handwriting will make for a very personal and honorary script tattoo that will hold cherished meaning.


Important Tattoo Lettering Considerations


Before you opt for a tattoo lettering design, there are several permanent aspects you’ll want to carefully consider.


Size: First, you’ll need to make the tattoo lettering design large enough so that it is legible. Some people do not like this idea, as they desire small and sweet little notions. Bear in mind the smaller the tattoo lettering, the harder your verse will be to read. Sometimes as the ink borders begin to blur, script tattoos can even become illegible.


You'll also want to ensure the correct spelling of your tattoo design. Several times. Don't leave it to your artist to ensure proper spelling.  It's your body, so own it and be certain.


An experienced and talented tattoo lettering artist already knows size is a pertinent factor in the design process, so be sure to trust their judgment. This may mean you need to shorten your verse, or move it from the wrist to the elbow where you’ll have more expressive canvas.


Upside or Right side: Next is deciding the direction you want your tattoo lettering design to face.


Many if not most people choose designs that face the world. But for a personal sentiment tattoo, you can face it however you’d like and ignore the naysayers. You’ll be reading this verse, and while a prominent “upside down” tattoo would look strange on the chest or your back (you can’t read it there either way) if it’s on your arm or hand you may read the whole argument a little differently.


The Verse: Think long and hard about what sentiment you actually want to make permanent with a tattoo lettering design. If it’s just a popular or trendy catchphrase, chances are you aren’t going to relate to the tattoo long-term. I suggest you do a bit of soul-searching with this aspect.


For inspiration, page through your favorite books, unearth beloved poetry, or consider small prayers that you’ve always felt comfort in repeating. Verse tattoos can be very definitive of who and what your passions are. So even if you believe in love, you may be better of tattooing “Love Never Fails” instead of your partner’s name.


The most important elements for a lettering tattoo are the verse, the font and of course the artist, so make sure you spend diligent time in discovering an artist who can “say it write.”


Image courtesy chelschels and Alter ego Issac


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