What clearer way to have a tattoo say something about you than to have it written out in words or letter? But the importance of selecting the right lettering style cannot be overemphasized. Consider, for example, the tattoo on the left rib of Swedish football hotshot Zlatan Ibrahimovic inked in classical lettering style which translates to “Only God Can Judge Me”. No doubt a profound statement, but without the perfect marriage of lettering style and meaning, there is a loss.
Would that statement still seem so powerful if it were implemented with an unsuitable lettering style such as grunge, bone, or block? I feel that the “oomph” factor of the tattoo would have been significantly reduced with the “wrong” lettering, resulting in a funny looking tattoo. Tattoos are not about getting attention or showing off something trendy; they are about expressing ideas, experiences, or beliefs that are most meaningful to a person. Tattoos are popular among celebrities, who have the limelight in which to show off their sentiments, and many celebrities have lettering tattoos. Below is a list of the basic lettering styles along with the names of some celebrities who are so adorned.
Latin letterings – Though Latin is no longer a spoken language, it’s dominance in European history makes it one of the most famous and beloved languages. Tattoo lovers around the world decorate their bodies with Latin words and expressions. Soccer superstar David Beckham has “Ut Amem Et Foveam” (“So that I love and cherish”) tattooed on him. Such a maudlin phrase is better expressed in Latin, and to complete the effect, the Latin must be written in a traditional Latin lettering style.
Arabic letterings – In my humble opinion, Arabic letters make a terrific tattoo primarily because they are so exotic looking. Several famous people have selected this type of writing for their tattoos. Not only the aforementioned Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who has his last name written in Arabic script, but even Hollywood heartthrob Brad Pitt, who has Arabic characters on his lower back.
Kanji letterings – Japanese kanji symbols are stylish and expressive, and as such they are much pursued. Some celebrities who’ve gotten kanji include WWE pro wrestler Dave Batista, and American pop star, Pink.
Chinese letterings –Kiefer Sutherland, Tyrese Gibson, and Sarah Michelle Gellar all have tattoos of Chinese lettering. Chinese characters are well thought of by many ink enthusiasts because they are so cool looking as well as coming from a long tradition of expressive calligraphy! There’s no doubt about it, Chinese characters are currently quite popular and unlikely to diminish any time soon.
Finding a unique and beautiful design to go along with your lettering style can be a onerous chore. You should try online tattoo art databases rather than the common tattoo shops and websites with cookie-cutter designs.