Tattooing is among the oldest art known. It is estimated that the practice started around 5,300+ years ago. Today, tattoo art has advanced in design and tools. The ever-changing world means new ideas keep on popping up. Therefore, having the best tattoo book is one of the ways to get new ideas.
For many people, adding tattoos is one way to express feelings, desires, and inspiration. It is estimated that about 35% of people in the US have tattoos. Whether you are a tattoo artist or an enthusiast, reading about this art from different parts of the world creates a new approach.
With more people willing to have tattoos, it’s time to equip yourself with a tattoo reference book that offers the best ideas.
Also Read: cordless tattoo machines
Our Picks for the 10 Best Tattoo Books
- Basic Fundamentals of Modern Tattoo
- The Tattoo Textbook: Escape the Grind, Do What You Love, and Launch Your Kick-Ass Tattoo Career
- Japanese Tattoos: Meanings, Shapes, and Motifs
- The Big Book of Small Tattoos
- The World Atlas of Tattoo
- Tiny Tattoos: 1,000 Small Inspirational Artworks
- Vintage Tattoos: The Book of Old-School Skin Art
- Graphic Art of Tattoo Lettering: A Visual Guide to Contemporary Styles & Designs
- Bodies of Subversion: A Secret History of Women and Tattoo
- Superior Tattoo Bible: Book One (Tattoo U,)
1. Tattoo Book for Beginners: Basic Fundamentals of Modern Tattoo
Weight: 8.8 ounces
Author: C.R. Jordan
Publisher: TBO Publishing
Having a good tattoo book for the tattooing profession keeps you ahead of the game. Not every book will provide great information, but it‘s one of the best tattoo books of all time.
This tattoo book is highly valuable and takes you toward achieving tattooing prowess step by step. With simple starting skills, the book doesn’t teach you to become a tattooing professor overnight.
The author, C.R. Jordan, is a member of the National tattoo association and other organizations. With knowledge about art, everyone using this book learns smoothly.
Unlike books filled with jargon, this one is simple and uses easy-to-understand language. Therefore, it’s one of the best options for any aspiring tattoo artist to grab.
Looking at the year of publication, this tattoo book isn’t old and has some modern techniques. The book is perfect for use with the latest tattoo kits and supplies. You can begin with small practice tattoos.
Amazingly, once a reader has this book, they can access TeachMeToTattoo.com. Therefore, no reason to get stuck in your journey to becoming a tattoo artist.
2. The Tattoo Textbook: Escape the Grind, Do What You Love, and Launch Your Kick-Ass Tattoo Career
Weight: 1.65 pounds
Publisher: Garden of Ink
Every professional tattoo artist starts from somewhere. It takes time and commitment to become such. But, when you have a guide, it will take less time to gain the necessary basics.
The Tattoo Textbook is one of the best tattoo reference books by a reputable professional. According to the author, Shelly Dax, the purpose is to help emerging tattoo artist achieve their desires.
Importantly, the author is knowledgeable about tattoos and other fundamentals of this art. It doesn’t matter your level; it’s considered a bible for tattoo beginners.
Unlike other tattoo books, this has superb illustrations. Combined with easy-to-understand language, every reader can understand straightway.
The author has covered different topics relevant to tattooing. Therefore, the tattoo book walks you hand in hand with any aspiring tattooer.
Available in hard copies and kindle, there is an option for the preferred format. With 237 pages, the tattoo book always ensures the perfect way to become an established tattooer.
3. Books on Japanese Tattoos: Japanese Tattoos: Meanings, Shapes, and Motifs
Weight: 1.61 pounds
Author: Yori Moriarty
Having seen a lot of traditional American tattoos, you may be curious about tattoos in other countries, like Japanese tattoos.
Japanese tattoos are among the most famous in the world. Apart from presenting great art, it’s also possible to become one of the leading Japanese tattooers.
The first step to achieving Japanese tattoo artistry, this tattoo book is a powerful tool. Unlike other books, this has tons of tattoos from Japanese culture and their meanings. You can consider it a Japanese tattoo flash book.
Suppose you love and cherish the tattoo from the land of the rising sun. The tattoo book offers perfect understanding. The reader will have no stress understating the origin and meaning of these tattoos.
The culture of irezumi, which has deep meaning and motifs, is well explained in this tattoo book. Whether it’s animals, flowers, and other designs, the reader gets a deeper meaning hassle-free.
With original descriptions by the author, every image comes with a simple illustration. It’s an excellent tattoo book for everyone with interest in Japanese tattoos.
4. Tattoo Book About Small Tattoos: The Big Book of Small Tattoos
Weight: 7.4 ounces
Author: Roberto Gemori
It is everyone’s dream to become one of the greatest tattooers. But it all starts with passion and dedication.
The Big Book of Small Tattoo is one of the tattoo books for beginners. It doesn’t matter the level since it perfectly suits beginners, allowing them to start their artistry life with small practice tattoos.
With a philosophy of small and meaningful, everyone wishing to learn basics finds it handy. The inspirations readers get from it are super amazing.
Once you opt to have this tattoo book, it brings a variety of options. With over 400 design collections, readers get diversity and a sense of creativity.
Not only do you enjoy the multiple designs, but each tattoo also comes with a description. Therefore, it’s easy to understand the image easily.
Some of the tattoos featured in this booklet include flowers, birds, seashells, knives, etc.
The design of the book on tattoos makes the content even more entertaining. Design and coloring bring real inspirations and motivation to learn.
5. Most Diverse Tattoo Book: The World Atlas of Tattoo
Weight: 3.9 pounds
Authors: Anna Felicity Friedman, Lars F. Krutak
Publisher: Yale University Press
Becoming a tattooer in the 21st century requires one to be creative and active enough. You can have great artistry, but complementing your career is recommended to add more ideas.
The World Atlas of Tattoos is a book that provides essential tips and starting points. It’s a goldmine for aspiring tattooers since the richness of information is on another level.
Covering various aspects, readers can learn about new genres and techniques in tattooing from this tattoo book. Amazingly, not only do you get a new sense, but it helps to explore tattoo traditions from different parts of the world.
Like other atlases, this tattoo book has different tattoos from Africa, the Middle East, Asia, Europe, and other places. The world of tattoos just got better.
If you aim to get inspiration from classic and well-crafted tattoos, the reference book on tattoos has it all. With over 700 high-quality images, they are not sketches but colored, offering a perfect presentation.
Besides, the tattoo design book provides different presentations from over 100 artists from around the globe.
6. Tattoo Book with Simple illustrations: Tiny Tattoos: 1,000 Small Inspirational Artworks
Weight: 15.2 ounces
Author: Rebecca Vincent
Publisher: Harper Design
Tiny Tattoos is one of the best inspirational books about tattooing that enables beginners to have confidence in their work. However, everyone can benefit from this tattoo idea book, starting from beginners to an enthusiast.
With the author concentrating on instilling experience and inspiration, it’s easy to master your design. It’s among the best books about tattooing around.
Fabulous, the author uses 1000 simple illustrations to ensure every reader gets variety in the tattoo book. The collection of over 1000 images, of which 50 are colorful, helps to offer great inspiration.
Unlike other tattoo books that only offer author experience, this has different sources. It incorporates the author’s experience as well as interviews with other artists.
The vast collection of designs allows the artists to enjoy a new way of tattooing inspiration. Ranging from images, symbols, quotes, and others, readers get a new way to express their artistry.
With 192 pages in total, everyone finds the English-written tattoo book superb to read and understand.
7. Tattoo Book on Old-school Art: Vintage Tattoos: The Book of Old-School Skin Art
Weight: 1.5 pounds
Author: Carol Clerk
This book of tattoos is written by Carol Clerk, an experienced and veteran music writer. Looking at the title, the tattoo book is excellent for vintage tattoo lovers or traditional American tattoo fans.
The author targets people looking to rediscover the art of vintage tattooing. Besides using graphic designers and leading artists’ designs, the readers taste vintage tattoos.
Suppose you want inspiration from old-school tattoos; the tattoo book just gives you a chance to enjoy great content. Some of the images are as old as the Viking time.
When readers opt to get the information from this book, it offers a lot of history in tattooing. The combination of graphics from different traditions evokes the vintage essence.
With super amazing reviews from leading book reviewers, every reader will testify about the book.
8. Tattoo Book on Modern Style: Graphic Art of Tattoo Lettering: A Visual Guide to Contemporary Styles & Designs
Weight: 1.76 pounds
Author: BJ Betts, Nicholas Schonberger
Publisher: Thames & Hudson
The Graphic Art of Tattoo Lettering is a tattoo book by BJ Betts and Nicholas Schonberger. The two are among the leading tattoo artist and fashion enthusiasts.
Published in 2019, it has some of the latest tattoo designs and options. Also, referencing tattoos is now easy with this book since it allows readers to learn tattooing stepwise.
The stencil book is a perfect guide whether you are a beginner or looking to learn about tattoo lettering. Besides, readers can learn about using some of the most widely used West coast lettering and calligraphic styles.
The inclusion of the latest styles and influential artists’ work helps to inspire upcoming tattooers.
Unlike some tattoo books focusing on beginners only, the Graphic art of tattoo lettering is incredible. It is a technical handbook for professional tattooers as well as beginners.
Suppose you want to master calligraphy, topography, and other modern styles; this tattoo design book will be your perfect choice.
9. Tattoo Book on Women Tattoo: Bodies of Subversion: A Secret History of Women and Tattoo
Weight: 1.52 pounds
Author: Margot Mifflin
Publisher: powerHouse Books
This tattoo book was originally published in 1997. The author delivered great content for women’s tattoos. The revised edition in 2013 added a lot of the latest information.
The book focuses on bringing unseen images of women’s tattoos from the last centuries. With more women opting to have tattoos, it serves as an inspiration. Therefore, a reader can always enjoy learning about old days tattoos.
A lot of information is available in this tattoo book regarding various tattoos from the last century. You can enjoy documentation of nineteenth-century forced tattoos.
The book also has Victorian women’s tattoo culture and cosmetic tattoo surgery’s rise in the 80s. Amazingly, readers also get a rare chance to see breast cancer survivors’ tattoos as a reconstructive option in their mastectomy.
The addition of 50 new color images, including newly discovered work by famous British women, offer more learning. In general, the tattooing book tries to showcase tattoos in women’s culture.
10. Tattoo Book with Famous Tattoo Artists: Superior Tattoo Bible: Book One (Tattoo U,)
Weight: 1.1 pounds
Compiler: Superior Tattoo
Publisher: Wolfgang Publications
Getting a tattoo is one achievement that many people consider nowadays. But, it can be a stressful step in the design and choice of images.
Superior Tattoo Bible is a book that gives everyone a variety of tattoos to choose from. With 500 high-quality drawings, ranging from hearts, dragons, flowers, and other art, you have a variety to select from.
One of the fantastic things about the tattoo stencil book is it comes with a collection of art from big names. Some artists’ work includes Kevin LeBlanc, Nate Power, Bob Sims, and others.
While most books have one tattoo genre, this tattoo book has multiple styles. Also, the images feature four per page. The complex ones are single per page to ensure perfect understanding.
Having the best tattoo books is one of the ways to bet on getting a perfect piece of art. Many books are available where readers can get more information.
With this list offering some of the best books for tattoos, everyone can now become a perfect artist. Besides, enthusiasts can learn a variety of tattoos and techniques.