Dotwork is a tattoo trend to be watched in 2017. Recent years have seen a revival in this style, especially as dot work tattoos are combined with other tattoo trends. Unique and artistic, they are style worth considering for your next tattoo.
What are dotwork tattoos?
Dotwork tattoos are one of the most intricate styles of tattoos. Talented tattoo artists create complicated geometric images with nothing but dots. The dots used to create a tattoo give a striking visual effect to the tattoo. These dots create either the entire image or just the shading. Dotwork used for shading is known as stippling.The dot tattoo is usually done with black ink, or grey ink. Sometimes red is used, but only because red creates a beautiful contrast effect on geometric tattoos.
Dotwork Tattoo: The Technique
Dotwork is a time-consuming technique, but it is well worth the wait. Each dot must be placed precisely, so the artist must be both highly skilled and patient. It is not uncommon for dot work tattoo artists to abandon conventional tattoo machines in favour of the hand poked technique. Hand poked tattoos take longer, but some artists find that it allows for more precise dot work.
Hand Poked Tattoo Technique vs Coil Tattoo Machines
Hand poked, or Stick and Poke, tattooing may have gained popularity in recent years, but it is far from new. This technique dates back to some of the oldest tattoos, with Polynesian tribes and the ancient Egyptians having used it.
Until recently hand poked technique had a bit of a negative stigma against it. As machines became mainstream, hand poked tattoos were generally viewed by the mainstream as homemade or prison tattoos. However, in the hands of a professional, stick and poke can be used for highly detailed tattoos. But most modern tattoo artists use coil machines over the stick and poke method. The coil machines are generally safer, faster, more consistent, and still allow for intricate details.
Recurring Subjects in Dotwork Tattoos
Tattoos have always had a religious and spiritual connotation in many cultures (especially Asian or in tribes like Maori). They have an energy of their own and when you get specific symbols tattooed, you need to know that those symbols can be very powerful. The dots technique is often used for mandala tattoos, and more often than not those tattoos are hand poked. A tattoo gun is not the best tool when it comes to dots. Hand poking requires a lot of patience, but it’s the best method for getting all the details right. Some of the recurring subjects for dotwork tattoos are mandalas, symbols like the Hamsa hand, the Eye of God, lace, decorative patterns like filigree, animal portraits (especially wolves, cats, foxes, snakes, butterflies,) animal and human skulls. Getting a dotwork tattoo usually takes more time than a regular color filled tattoo. If you go to an artist who only uses the hand poking technique, it will take even longer, but the results will be so good that you won’t regret it!
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