Koi Tattoos & Koi Tattoo Designs
The Koi fish is widely known as a beautiful and powerful fish in oriental culture, and koi tattoos are equally beautiful and full of power.
The formal name for the fish is Nishigikoi which means “living jewels.” They have become widely appreciated by breeders and collectors alike.
The fish come in a variety of colors, including yellow, white, orange and calico.
The fish are widely respected in oriental cultures, especially Japan because of their bravery. They have the strength to climb waterfalls and when caught they will not even quiver when faced with a chef’s knife.
This is paralleled to the bravery of the samurai who would face their own death without fear. The koi is also part of an ancient Chinese myth that dates back over 2,000 years, where it was believed that if the koi succeeded in climbing the waterfalls at Dragon’s Gate, they would be turned into a dragon. This led to the koi being a symbol of worldly aspiration and advancement.
The manly qualities of the koi caused it to become part of the annual Boy’s Day Festival in Japan in which colorful koi flags are displayed to represent every son in the family.
Today, koi tattoo designs are seen to represent courage, advancement and the ability to overcome the troubles of life. They have long been a popular design in Japanese culture and have recently become popular in Western culture as well. In tribute to the Boy’s Day Festival some people will also get koi tattoos in honor of their sons. Koi tattoos designs are have also been chosen in celebration of overcoming adversity and strife in life.
For whatever reason you choose koi tattoo designs you’ll be satisfied with the history and meaning of this beautiful and powerful fish. Koi fish tattoos are widely popular for their unique color and design, as well as their
symbolism for strength and courage. The designs will often feature the koi fish swimming among waves in representation of their ability to swim up waterfalls.
Koi tattoos are normally done in orange or red, or in a simple black and white design. If done in color it is often the bright colors that make the tattoo stand out, but if done in black and white then it is the definition and artistry that really stand out. Koi tattoos are normally done quite large in order to give proper detail to the fish.
The most common places for a koi fish tattoo are on the shoulder, bicep or back. Nearly all koi fish designs are created with the fish appearing like it is swimming. Many times Japanese characters will be incorporated into the tattoo, and sometimes even flowers or other oriental symbols.
Choosing a color for the koi fish can also add to its meaning. For example a white koi fish with a red spot on its head represents national pride and personal greatness. This comes from its similarity to the Japanese flag.
Celebrity Koi Tattoos
A number of celebrities also have koi fish tattoos such as Charlize Theron and her mother have matching koi fish tattoos as a representation of her mother’s successful fight against breast cancer. Chester Bennigton from Linkin Park also has a koi fish tattoo. John Mayer has his koi fish tattoo on his upper right shoulder. Model Caroline Murphy has a koi style fish on her hip.
When choosing koi tattoo designs it is important to understand the history of the koi fish which extends more than 2,000 years and has inspired centuries of beautiful tattoos. Koi fish tattoo designs are among the most beautiful you can choose and are a great symbol of strength and ability to overcome adversity.