Simple, single line tattoos are exploding in popularity as a minimalist’s alternative to traditional tattoo styles. The leading artist who pioneered this style is Mo Ganji, a German-Iranian tattoo artist who revels in the simplicity of a single line.
With a single line, Ganji is able to highlight the subtle detail within intertwining portraits, birds, turtles, foxes, skulls, mountain ranges, and an endless list of other subjects. The line, which varies in thickness, is only accompanied by a few accent dots and light shading.
These tattoos also come with a philosophy that echoes Ganji’s own outlook on life. In a society that is becoming increasingly dependant upon materialism, single line tattoos are a reminder to live simply. When asked about why he tattoos in this style, Ganji claimed, “When it comes to life, I appreciate the simple things.”
The amount of emotion and beauty that Ganji can portray with a simple line is truly striking. Below, you’ll find just a few of these masterpieces.
Caught in mid-flight, this songbird illustrates the flow needed to make a continuous line tattoo
A defiant, roaring lion emphasizes a powerful message through a simple means
A prowling cougar peers from behind a shoulder.
A delicate flower, one of the most popular images within tattoo culture, recreated in the single line style.
This mysterious landscape tattoo features the rough ridges and sunken shadows of a mountain range
Full of childlike innocence, this image immortalizes the first meeting of an inquisitive kitten and a playful puppy.
This quirky design shows that any object can be converted into a single line masterpiece.
The profiles of a tiger and lion are connected by a single line, emphasizing tragic affection and long distance friendships.
This classic image is recreated and given new life through innovative style.
A cresting whale showcases the sense of life and motion that is communicated through these simple designs.