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How to Draw a Tattoo (When You Aren’t An Artist)!

Deciding to get tattoo is a permanent commitment. So naturally, deciding what you want to get a tattoo of is even more important. Lets say you have in mind an image of the perfect tattoo, but not sure how to put in on paper. Or what if you want to create something original, but lack the artistic talent to draw it? Here are a few tips that will help you draw the tattoo of your dreams.


The first thing you want to do is decide what you want the tattoo to look like. If you have an idea, say, you would like to draw a butterfly, the internet is a fantastic tool to help you get started. There are thousands of images are out there, and don’t limit yourself in just searching “Butterfly Tattoo,” search for the insect themselves. Even picture books at your local library will have countless images of what you are looking for.

Grab a Pencil, Paper, and an Eraser

Once you see an image that you like, print it out. If it’s in a book, photocopy it. I recommend you draw the image by tracing it onto tracing paper, then coloring it in. Nothing will actually take the place of the tattoo itself, but you’ll be surprised how quickly you may change your mind once you see an image. You may decide you would like to alter the color, size, and even parts of the design itself. Remember, the drawing doesn’t have to be exactly perfect. If there are details you have in mind but lack the drawing expertise, doing a rough sketch or even writing in words what you would like may suffice.

Online Drawing Tutorials

There are a plethora of online drawing tutorials, several for tattoo drawing specifically. This is a useful resource, and great for those who aren’t in a rush. The process in honing your artistic skills can be time-consuming, but worth it. Not to mention fun!


If you are one who really struggles with drawing, enlisting the help of friends with an artistic flair may be the answer. On some occasions, you may ask a tattoo artist to draw up a sketch, however, this may require an art deposit. Each tattoo artist operates differently, although it never hurts to ask! It also may be a good idea to scout the work of particular tattoo artists you admire. They may have a similar aesthetic to the design you desire and help you in bringing your drawing to fruition.

Drawing and designing your own tattoo may seem intimidating, but knowing it was your drawing skills and your imagination that created it, make it worth it!

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