Getting tattoos on your shoulder or upper arm is quite common. Having these tattoos in the form of pictures and tribal designs is also common. Something a bit different from the norm would be to have a quote written on your shoulder. Having the names of loved ones is also a quite common tattoo design but you could also have a quote tattooed on your shoulder. Your shoulder tattoo could be on your upper arm, or on your upper back or shoulder blade.
Before getting a shoulder tattoo in the form of a quote, there are a number decisions to make. The final choice of tattoo can be influenced by your gender; what is suitable for a woman is not necessarily suitable for a man.
What Language Do You Want Your Shoulder Tattoo In?
Do you want your shoulder tattoo quote in a language other than your own? Chinese and Japanese characters, or logograms, which are commonly referred to as ideograms, are popular tattoo designs, but there’s no reason why another language or alphabet couldn’t be used.
One thing that is very important when getting a tattoo in a language that you don’t speak is to make sure it says what you think it says. Removing tattoos is often difficult, painful or expensive. You don’t want to discover that what you originally thought was an uplifting quote to have as a shoulder tattoo is something you didn’t intend or is actually insulting.
When choosing a foreign language quote for your tattoo you could get a quote you want writing translated into the language from your own, although this must be done properly – don’t use Google Translate, you want the quote to make sense. Alternatively, you could use an existing quote in that language that already has meaning.
What Colour Do you Want Your Tattoo?
You could choose to have either a multi-coloured or monochrome tattoo. Using multiple colours is most suitable when using more elaborate fonts to design the tattoo; simpler fonts lack the complexity required to properly use multiple colours. With simple fonts the only way of really use multiple colours is by having each character a different colour – something that is unlikely to turn out well.
Even with a monochrome tattoo, there is a choice of colours. Some are more commonly used than others, such as blues, greens and black, but there is no reason why other colours shouldn’t be chosen. What colour you want to use can be affected by your skin, as a colour may turn out well on one skin type but poorly on another. Certain colours may not look good no matter what when used for a shoulder tattoo composed of characters.
What Font Do You Want Your Tattoo In?
If you aren’t going to have your quote tattoo written in logograms, such as Chinese or Japanese, then it will be necessary to choose a font. The font is the style of the actual letters used. There are a wide variety of fonts, from the plain and everyday fonts such as Arial or Times New Roman, which you will commonly see both online and in print, to more complex lettering such as English Towne. More complex fonts will more than likely also be hardr and more expensive to get done.
The choice of font will also affect other aspects of the tattoo. A more complex font such as English Towne will not be as readable if written small, so will need to be larger, which will affect the size of quote that can be tattooed on your shoulder. More complex fonts will also more easily allow multiple colours to be used. There is likely to be a trade-off though between font complexity and the length of the quote you can get tattooed.
How Long Will Your Quote Be?
The length of the quote you can get tattooed on your shoulder will be affected by your font choice as previously mentioned, but your body will also be a factor. How big your shoulder is can help determine how long a quote you can have tattooed on it.
Which Direction Do You Want Your Shoulder Tattoo?
There are several ways you could have your quote tattooed on your shoulder. This will be partly dependent on the size of the tattoo. The first is to have the quote tattooed horizontally on your upper arm, partially ringing it. The second is to have it vertically, descending down your arm from your shoulder. A third way would be to have the text written in a circle, similar to how a motto is written around the face of a coin. The most common way is by having a quote of one or more lines tattooed in the area of your shoulder blade.
What Quote Do You Want Tattooed?
Probably one of the most important choices is to decide what quote you actually want to have tattooed on your shoulder. This should be considered carefully. Whatever you choose, you are, unless you pay to have it removed, going to be living with for a long time. It’s not a good idea to choose something that’s a bit of a passing fad, even if it doesn’t seem like it at the time. That band or singer you love at 18 you might not feel quite the same way about at age 30. Or even by the time you reach 21.
Mock Up The Tattoo First
When planning on getting a shoulder tattoo of a quote it is a good idea to see what it would look like first. There are a number of ways of going about this. You can ask a tattoo artist for samples of their work. You can use computer software to see how your quote will look in different fonts and colours. You could even take a photo of your shoulder (possibly with help or a mirror), open the picture with some photo editing software and write on the image. A temporary tattoo, such as henna or transfers, could be used first to see what it will look like on your shoulder.
Picking A Tattoo Artist
Of all the steps you take towards getting a quote tattooed on your shoulder, picking the tattoo artist is by far the most important. The tattooist is going to be puncturing your skin and putting substances underneath it. The last thing you want is sloppy or dirty work which could have health implications. If you see someone with ink you like, ask them where they had it done and if they are happy with it. Visit potential tattooist and take a look at their place of work. Check to see if it looks clean, whether staff are wearing gloves and if they have an autoclave for sterilisation. Consider if you would be happy to eat in the parlour. If it’s so dirty that you wouldn’t want to eat there, you certainly don’t want them sticking needles in you.
Many tattoo inks are not regulated, so try and discover what inks a parlour uses and whether they are certified in any way. Ask to see images of previous work, and see if they have any suitable means of mocking up how your shoulder tattoo will look.
Here Are Some Sources Of Quotes To Start With
A quote that you have tattooed on your shoulder could have personal or emotional meaning. The singer Christina Aguilera, when she married Jordan Bratman, had “Te Amo Siempre tattooed on her shoulder which is Spanish for “I Love You Forever.” Aguilera later divorced Bratman which shows that something you may believe will be permanent might not be.
Literature is a good source of quotes. Consider having a quote from a classic author or playwright, or from one you love.
If you are religious, you may want to consider having an inspiring religious verse or quote tattooed on your shoulder. Religious holy books and texts have many short quotes that are appropriate for the faithful.
Inspirational quotes are not limited to religion. The pop star Rihanna has “Never a failure. Always a lesson.” tattooed on her, although it is in mirror writing – which means she can read it in the mirror – and the front of her shoulder rather than on her back.
Humorous quotes are another possibility. although these should be chosen with great care. Something offensive tattooed on you, no matter how funny you believe it to be, has the potential to cause problems, and something you might find funny now you may not at a later date.
Given the popularity of sports, you may consider having the motto of your sports club, whether a formal or informal motto, tattooed on your shoulder, such as Liverpool Football Club’s “You’ll never walk alone.”
The Liverpool quote actually comes from a song, so classic songs are another source of inspiration for quotes.
Only You Can Decide
In the end up comes down to you. Only you can, and should, decide what quote you want to have tattooed on your shoulder. Ask others for advice certainly, but don’t get a quote done that you aren’t personally happy with just to please someone else. You may be living with that tattoo long after the person has vanished from your life.