30 Beautiful Owl Tattoos With Facts And Meanings

The Owl is a beautiful avian creature known for its silent flight, distinct calls, and eyes that are able to see in the dark.
In Ancient wisdom, animals are believed to possess a spirit that transcends its own body to guide us humans into the wonders and mysteries of Life. As a spirit animal, the Owl guides and reveals to us what is beyond the veil of deception and illusion—which is why it is strongly linked to wisdom, mystery, knowledge and intuition. It is a strong spirit guide for discernment & assessment of difficult situations. Owls appear as wise & noble characters in many children’s storybooks including Winnie the Pooh, Harry Potter, and The Secrets of Nimh. Interesting, isn’t it? Let’s learn more about owls and explore its beautiful meanings as a tattoo while checking out these beautiful owl tattoos!
Fact: There are over 200 species of Owls which are sorted in 2 basic groups: the True owls and the Barn owls. The true owls typically have a round facial feature, a short tail and a large head. The barn owls have a heart-shaped face with long legs and powerful talons. Their colors consist mostly of brown, rust, grey, white, black, and it forms patterns which helps it conceal itself from its prey. (Tattoo by Teresa Sharpe)
Ghost owl tattoo by Teresa Sharpe
Owls are predators and they feed on small mammals such as mice, squirrels and rabbits. Since they have no teeth, they either tear their poor prey's flesh to smaller pieces or swallow it whole. (Ghost owl by Teresa Sharpe.)
Fact: Many species of owls possess wings capable of producing less sounds of flapping winds during flight. This makes it easier for them to hunt. This is due to the genetic makeup of their feathers. Some feathers are developed to reduce turbulence, some to minimize noise. Overall, the downy feathers cover the surfaces of the wings to further reduce sound. Amaaazing! (Tattoo by Jason Tucker, Old Ghost Tattoo)
Owls have their eyes fixed to its sockets---which makes them have to turn their entire head around if it needs to look around. For this reason, an owl symbolizes a watchful observer. They can  represent our loved ones whom are our personal teachers & guides throughout life, watching over us always even when they're physically gone. They can be our Grandparents, Mom & Dad, Aunts & Uncles, an influential person, etc.
Owl tattoo
The Owl is also a guide to discover one's abilities & hidden potential---which lies deep in our heart's greatest desires. (Chest tattoo by Myke Chambers)
Native American tribes (the indians) viewed the owl as a protector from harm and their feathers were worn to ward off evil spirits. (tattoo by Dimitriy Samohin)
Owl tattoo by Joey Ortega
To the Ancient Greeks, the Owl is a symbol of the Goddess Athena---the goddess of foresight and knowledge. (Tattoo by Joey Ortega)
Owl tattoo
If you are attracted to owls, you probably like to explore the unknown.
Artsy owl tattoo
Night time is particularly conducive to your creativity. Thus, focusing your creative energy then may produce better results. (Tattoo by Adrian Edek)
Owl sleeve tattoo
Owls are usually depicted with a key under its claws, to represent the unlocking of new knowledge. (Tattoo by Ryan Mason)
One can call on the spirit of the owl in times of confusion. And it shall bring upon clarity and a better observance and connection to our surroundings, just like that silent watchful owl on a tree (artist: Russ Abbott)
Owls are revered to as Guardians of the After Life.
Owl and skull tattoo
They are symbolic of Death in many traditions often viewed as a transition and not as loss. This explains the famous owl & skull layout as a tattoo.
In another context, this transition is viewed as the important changes taking place in our lives and those that are bound to happen. (Tattoo by Dimitriy Samohin)
For this reason, the Owl becomes a beautiful tattoo motif. As we see now, it is represented and reinvented in many tattoo styles. (Tattoo by Miss Arianna.)
Tattoo by Claudia de Sabe
Sometimes it is designed with a girl's head.
Cool punk owl tattoo by Jim Sylvia
Sometimes played by the artist.
Cool punk owl tattoo by Jim Sylvia
Sometimes whimsical...
Cute tattoo by Adrian One, Better Days Tattoo
Tattoo by Myke Chambers
A majestic creature, an owl is. It looks great as a tattoo whether it flies or just perches.
Minimalistic tattoos by Sasha Unisex
And it's for everyone! Men and women alike!
Owl hand tattoo
For small areas such as the hand, an owl head is a good layout.
Owl chest tattoo
For chest or back pieces, an owl in flight is your best bet (you wouldn't wanna miss out on the beautiful feathers spread out & proud!)
Owl tattoo
For lengthy areas such as the arms, a perching owl's a good option.
Owl tattoo
But as new styles emerge, new ways of placing the tattoo emerged as well.
Tattoo by Matt Jordan
For more stunning Owl tattoos, follow our pinterest board for inspiration!