The octopus is a sea creature with four pairs of arms that are called tentacles. Because it has eight arms, the sea dwelling creature was called the “octopus” because “oct” is Latin for “eight”. The octopus has no skeleton or shell, which means that it can squeeze through small spaces. It uses a variety of unusual defense techniques, such as squirting “ink” that clouds the water and allows the octopus to swim away undetected. Octopuses are also venomous and a bite from the beak-like mouth between its legs can be deadly to other sea creatures. As a totem tattoo, octopuses are mostly chosen by people who have a relationship with the sea or feel a connection with the symbolism of these eight-legged creatures.
Find ideas and inspiration for octopus and tentacle tattoos in: Octopus Tattoo Design Ideas
Octopus Designs as Tantalizing Tentacle Tattoos
Octopus legs are called tentacles. Because of their lack of bone, the tentacles appear to curl and flow in the water, creating organic lines that radiate outwards from the body of the octopus. In tattoo designs, these tentacles can be curled around a person’s arms, neck, legs or torso. The textures of octopus tentacles look great in tattoos, especially since the top and bottom halves of the tentacles have distinctly different textures.
Realistic tattoos of an octopus are best inked as large designs. The extra space allows the tattoo artist to include intricate details such as the color, texture and patterns of the octopus’s skin. The silhouette of an octopus tattoo is important, and it is easier to recognize the silhouette of a large tattoo than that of a small tattoo. The tentacles should be displayed in a way that enhances the outline and silhouette of the octopus tattoo, rather than creating a mess of tangled tentacles.
The octopus is a fascinating creature. Each species has evolved unusual ways of eating, moving, escaping predators and defending itself from attack. Many octopus species are able to squirt ink into the water around them. The ink clouds the water, creating an underwater smoke screen that confuses the predator and allows the octopus to escape. This ink cloud can be used in tattoo designs as a background for the octopus because the dark colors of the ink cloud can make the brighter colors of the octopus tattoo stand out.
The Meaning of Octopus Tattoos
Because the octopus has no bone structure or shell, it is a very flexible creature. This attribute has given octopus tattoos the symbolism of flexibility and willingness to compromise. Some octopuses are able to change color, like a chameleon, allowing them to camouflage themselves in any environment. The ability to change color gives the octopus the meaning of adaptability in tattoo designs. An octopus tattoo is often chosen as a symbol that a person has experienced many changes in their life and has found themselves to have flexible personalities and the ability to adapt to new situations.
The octopus is an unusual creature, unlike anything that man is used to seeing on land. The Hawaiian creation myth states that the world has evolved in stages, with each stage being built out of the remains of the last stage. According to the Hawaiian legend, the octopus is the sole survivor of the previous alien world. Although this tale is little known, it is the story that has inspired many surfers and fishermen to get a tattoo of an octopus. This tattoo celebrates the mystery of the ocean and the history of an underwater world that man has only just begun to explore.
Some octopus species are able to disengage a tentacle when under attack. The severed limb continues to twitch and curl, distracting the predator while the octopus swims away. For many smaller predators, the limb is enough to sate their hunger and the octopus lives to swim another day. The octopus is able to grow a new tentacle in place of the one lost to the predator. This ability to regenerate is symbolized in tattoo designs in the form of an octopus, reflecting the tattoo owner’s own ability to rebuild their lives after a tragedy.
Octopus tattoos are worn by both men and women and can have natural, neutral colors or bright, fantasy colors. An octopus tattoo looks fantastic on its own or accompanied by other sea creatures. The octopus is also a perfect creature for using in surrealist tattoo designs because of its otherworldly shape. This sea creature has appeared in numerous myths, books and movies as a powerful, mysterious creature of the underwater realm. It is now appearing in tattoo designs as a symbol of mystery, flexibility, adaptability, camouflage and regeneration.