Realistic tattoos have to capture the essence of a portrait or image without sacrificing accuracy, or failing to display the intricacies of. Usually represented by portraits or true to life scenes that showcase the fine line detail of a photograph or painting. Photo realism is different than just high detailed tattooing. With realism you need to have a picture to go by.
Line art tattooing is one of the newer style you will find in tattoo shops and has been achievable because of the improvements made with tattoo machines, inks and needles. Artist today are able to add more detail and special effects to their artwork. Line art is often used in portrait tattoos or to achieve a delicate look.
Dotwork tattoos are one of the most intricate styles. Complicated geometric images are created with nothing but dots. Dotwork tattoos are a style on their own, and the shading you get through dots is almost 3D. You can’t get that kind of shading with any other method. The dotwork technique is used especially for geometric tattoos, religious and spiritual tattoos.
Old school tattoos are images that are two-dimensional and low intricacy. Thicker lines are used and the inspiration is typically nautical and military in theme. The popularity of old school has been growing permanently though the 20th century until the style went far beyond the marine environments. Nowadays it’s one of the most widely distributed and fashionable tattoo art directions.
This is a modern type of art and usually doesn’t have any type of outline. It breaks away from the traditional representation of animals, people and the world around us. To be depicted as an abstraction gives the subject of the tattoo a second meaning that the person feels detached from the subject, or is unable to fully comprehend it.