Chicano tattoo designs are similar to murals and car paintings but also have their own characteristics. Originally done with a sewing needle and Indian Ink, real Chicano tattoos must only use black ink.
Fine lines are used for religious themes and girls portraits, while bold shadings stand out for letterings, often first names, Spanish words or locas (names of birthplace or neighborhood).
Above photo of ‘Oldies’ shows his Chicano tattoos by artist John Lin.
Loyalty to the community, to family, women and God is Chicano’s art main element. But contrary to popular opinion, Chicano tattoo is not bound to Mexican and Latin American people. Clients from Europe, Asia and the US also ask for them and tattoo artists from various origins favor this style. Most famous Chicano artists are Californian masters Steve Soto and Jun Cha and also Italian famous tattoo artist Antonio Macko Todisco.
Here are some of the most common Chicano tattoo designs …
Girls are an important part of the Chicano art. Mexican woman or American icons such as Marilyn Monroe, famous actresses or singers, whenever you see a beautiful girl, you can be sure that she has got her Chicano tattoo, with gang tattoos on her … Girls are often associated with guns, skulls and dollars to symbolize success and how short life is.
Family and history pride reunited in a great back piece by Steve Soto.