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Butterfly Tattoo

by Munmun Moni
Butterfly Tattoo
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Butterfly tattoos are a popular design choice and for good reason. Regarded as beautiful, delicate parts of nature, butterflies look great paired with the body’s natural form, no matter the placement.

Butterfly Tattoo

Plus, these designs are easily personalized, allowing you to create a truly unique piece of ink. If you’d rather play up the creatures’ intrinsic meanings instead, butterflies are known for symbolizing everything from freedom and transformation to delicate beauty.

Whatever your reason for wanting a butterfly tattoo, the most important part is to be sure of what you want it to look like. If you’re still searching for that perfect something,

Knee Butterfly Tattoo

The shape of the butterfly’s wings looks great around circular bones like the knee. Keep the design otherwise simple to play up the shape.

Blackwork Butterfly Tattoos with Flames

This artist went for a more stylized, cartoonish butterfly instead of a realistic approach. But the long, sharp edges of the butterfly wings work really well with the fire flames that are coming off of them. The stars act as some nice filler to bring the piece together.

Minimal Butterfly Tattoo

Butterflies are great design ideas because they can be stylized in a number of ways. If you prefer a minimal tattoo, stick to a few lines—maybe even just one—in your design.

Small, Delicate Black and Gray Butterfly Tattoo

Lena, the artist who performed this tattoo, has a portfolio full of beautiful, feminine tattoo ideas. She’s into fine lines, light shading, and no color – one of the hottest trends of the last few years.

Playful Butterfly Tattoo

Placed behind the ear, butterfly tattoos gain a sense of playfulness, as they can only be seen from certain angles or when your hair is pulled back. The white detailing adds to the whimsical feeling as well.

Butterfly Tattoo

Butterfly Tattoo

Line Art Butterfly Tattoo

Because butterfly wings tend to be intricate, line art makes for a great style for this design. If you plan on adding a lot of lines, keep the decoration and coloring otherwise simple.

Purple Butterfly Rose Tattoo

The positioning of this tattoo on the front of the shoulder is very pretty. And it goes along well with the collarbone text tattoo.

This style of watercolor, where the colors are light and dabbed on instead of brushed is quite popular. This is an awesome rendition of a rose tattoo mixed with a butterfly.

Dynamic Butterfly Tattoo

Butterflies come in a variety of colors and designs, so they can easily match any aesthetic. This butterfly tattoo uses subtle shading and white ink to create a dynamic sense of light and dark.

Blackwork Moth Wrist Tattoo

Fans of blackwork tattoos regularly place them on their body in a sticker-like fashion. With this piece, the customer placed the moth tattoo in an untraditional way along their forearm, but even then it looks nice.

Shoulder Butterfly Tattoo

The shoulder blade is a great location for a butterfly tattoo, as the amount of surface area means you can make it any shape and size that you’d like. The extra space also allows you to add more drawn-out details, like the shadow under the butterfly in this design.

Butterfly Dagger Tattoo

Butterflies and daggers are both popular icons in the world of tattoos. And while you’d rarely ever associate them with each other, there’s nothing stopping you from mixing them together as this person did.

Arm Butterfly Tattoo

Placing a few butterflies along the arm gives the impression that they’re flying upward. Using a fine line style guarantees a sense of daintiness, and spacing out the butterflies adds to the weightlessness.

Red Butterflies Tattoo

Butterfly tattoos don’t have to be super minimal or super maximal—feel free to play around with elements to find your perfect design. Here, a set of bold butterflies are customized with red ink to add visual interest.

Small, Colorful Butterflies Tattoo

Just because you opt for small butterflies doesn’t mean you have to forgo color. Use a lighter color to make the insects feel weightless and delicate, rather than weighing them down.
Butterfly Tattoo

Butterfly Tattoo

Geometric Butterfly Tattoo

Geometric designs work well for butterfly tattoos because of the ornate designs that normally appear on the insect. Sharp, straight lines don’t ruin a butterfly’s image—instead, they add a sense of contrast that feels organic.

Natural Butterfly Tattoo

Rather than opting for a straight butterfly design, why not combine it with another natural element? Here, the butterfly is combined with florals, giving the tattoo delicately powerful energy.

Black Watercolor Ink Butterfly Forearm Tattoo

More often than not, watercolor tattoos are done in color. In fact, it’s very rare to see this style done in all black – it kind of looks like a tribal butterfly design actually. The Korean artist did a very good job creating the watercolor effect while making sure the design didn’t become messy.

Weightless Butterfly Tattoo

If you want a more realistic tattoo, butterflies are easily made to look as though they’re about to fly off your skin. With details like a large, properly placed shadow and dynamic shading on the wings, this butterfly is ready to take flight.

Thick Butterfly Tattoo

Butterfly tattoos don’t have to be small and minimal. Adding heavy shading or bright colors can add some bold personality to the popular design choice.

Butterfly Tattoo with Dotwork Background

When comparing this tattoo to the ones surrounding it, you can see the importance of the frame in this design. By adding the circular background, the butterfly is elevated and made to look special. It’s a subtle touch, but a critical one. That is where talented artist separates themselves from the pack.

Pastel Butterfly Tattoo

Try playing around with different tattoo styles with your butterfly design. This tattoo uses pastel coloring and a technique that looks like the wings themselves are overlapping.

Blackwork Butterfly Tattoo

Thanks to the heavy black that naturally occurs on butterflies, blackwork tends to work well on tattoos of insects. Rather than feeling heavy, the black feels normal, which makes visual room for more details to be added.

Butterfly Chest  Tattoo

Placing a butterfly in the center of your chest makes a statement. Going for a red color will add to that drama and make it feel as though it’s a part of your skin, rather than inked on.
Butterfly Tattoo

Butterfly Tattoo

Butterfly Thigh Tattoo Ideas: A Realistic Butterfly Tattoo

You’ll be hard-pressed to find a better realistic monarch butterfly tattoo than this. England’s own Keira Rose knocked it out of the park with this one. The accuracy of the details, the steady lines, the smooth shading, and the vibrant colors were all wonderfully done. And if you like the location, check out our other thigh tattoo ideas

Butterfly Delicate Tattoo

A collection of butterflies along the collarbone feels very chic and delicate because of the curves of the bone and the movement of the design. Because the collarbones add a bit of daintiness, you can also feel free to use a lot of blackwork if you wish.

Butterfly Add-On  Tattoo

Thanks to their ability to be any size without losing detail, butterflies are great add-ons to existing tattoos. If you’ve already got ink and are faced with filling an empty space, why not choose a butterfly design?

Butterfly Word  Tattoo
Placing a word or phrase next to a butterfly tattoo will enhance the tattoo’s symbolism. While butterflies often represent change, endurance, or life itself, adding your own quote will give it a meaning that’s important to you.

Butterfly Simple Tattoo

Because butterflies can be easily identified when broken down to their basic shapes, they look really good in a line art style. Making the lines feel more sketched out gives the otherwise simple shapes a sense of personality.

Butterfly Shaded  Tattoo

If you want to add some intricate detailing without a lot of color or excess lines, opt for light shading to add depth to the wings. Keep any additional details thin and light to keep the design ornate, but not overwhelming.

Butterfly Tattoo

Butterfly Tattoo

Leopard Butterfly Leg Tattoo

One reason that makes butterfly tattoos popular is the wings. They are like a canvas where artists could go creative. And this leopard butterfly shows how possibilities are endless. Mix and match with different patterns, and you may also have a unique butterfly tattoo.

Moth and Butterfly Friendship Tattoos

Moths and butterflies are both symbols of life and rebirth. To fly, both moths and butterflies have to wrap themselves in a cocoon and push through the transformation. They are living proof that change might be scary, but it’s worth it.

These two best friend tattoos represent the dual’s shared courage. When faced with challenges, they are each other’s strongest support. And these matching moth and butterfly tattoos honor their unbreakable bond.

Geometric Butterfly Triceps Tattoo

This tattoo was done by Diana Gray, who tattoos from Russia and Cyprus. It’s a simple geometric fractalization of a line-work butterfly – nothing that unique, but well-executed.  Plus in terms of positioning, you can’t really go wrong with a butterfly tattoo on the tricep

Butterfly Floral  Tattoo

Butterflies are a perfect complement to a floral tattoo. Both occur in nature, have beautiful energy, and can represent life. Pairing them bolsters these attributes.

ButterflyContrasting  Tattoo

Rather than focusing on the inner wing of a butterfly design, try pulling attention to the blackwork complexities of the wing. The white details create a striking contrast while managing to feel natural.

Butterfly Overlapping Tattoo

Butterfly finger tattoos don’t need to be simplified to keep them from overwhelming the finger. Feel free to add extra loops or overlapping lines to add visual interest while keeping it well-spaced.

Simple Outline Butterfly Forearm Tattoo

This tattoo by Brazilian artist Bruno Matos is just so clean. The fine, fine lines with zero shading give a beautiful, feminine feel. The details in the butterfly’s wings are intriguing, while still providing tons of white space. And the positioning at the top of the forearm is my favorite spot for a forearm butterfly tattoo.

Butterfly Tattoo

Butterfly Tattoo

Series of Butterflies Tattoo

To play up the movement that comes naturally to a butterfly tattoo, go for a design featuring a series of butterflies. Place each butterfly’s wings into a different mid-flight position to make them seem like they’re flying.

Butterfly Wing Tattoo

Because the body of a butterfly is dominated by its beautiful wings, a design without the actual body can still make an obvious impact. In this tattoo, the wings almost feel more weightless without the body, as it conjures up the image of delicate dried wings, rather than live ones.

Butterfly and Chrysanthemum Neck tattoo

If you are born in November, you may be familiar with the chrysanthemum, as it is the birth flower of the month. However, the chrysanthemum is not just a pretty flower that captures attention. It signifies life and rebirth, just like a butterfly.

Chrysanthemums in different colors have different meanings, too. For example, the red chrysanthemum in this butterfly neck tattoo is a symbol of love and passion.

Butterfly Tattoo Cover-up

Butterflies and flowers often show up together in tattoos for women. This shoulder tattoo is a bit different. Initially, it was a single butterfly tattoo. Then, as the patterns fade, it is redesigned into a flower and a butterfly.

The vibrant colors cover most of the old tattoos. But if you look closer, you can find the old butterfly in the center of the new one, which resembles rebirth. And that’s what makes this cover-up tattoo meaningful.

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