The Hybridized Style of Coen Mitchell's Animal Portraits

Coen Mitchell has invented his own unique style of ornamental tattoo that he calls "mosaic flow," and it's perfect for tattoos of critters.

Powerton6 months ago in Tattoo Artists

We're all living in a wonderful age of hybrid art, in which artists are mixing different genres and mediums in order to create truly avant-garde work. This method of combining is a tried and true art form (see: the entire Surrealist movement), and its translation onto skin is just as glorious.

Ross HowertonFrom Tattoodo App
The shine that Coen Mitchell detailed in this emperor monkey's eyes gives it a sagely look. #avantgarde #animals #CoenMitchell #emperormonkey #mosaicflow #flow #hybrid #mosaic #ornamental #traditional
The shine that Coen Mitchell detailed in this emperor monkey's eyes gives it a sagely look. #avantgarde #animals #CoenMitchell #emperormonkey #mosaicflow #flow #hybrid #mosaic #ornamental #traditional

Take Coen Mitchell's envelope-pushing work. He has combined elements from several disciplines of tattooing — traditional and ornamental among them — using various techniques in order to create what he has dubbed as "mosaic flows." The aesthetic of the resulting style is exquisite to say the least, and we at Tattoodo have decided to showcase it for you in the form of Mitchell's animal portraits, because, let's be honest, critters are just the best.

Ross HowertonFrom Tattoodo App
The natural complexity of butterfly and moth wings are ideal for Coen Mitchell's nuanced style. #avantgarde #animals #CoenMitchell #eyes #flow #hybrid #mosaic #mosaicflow #moth #ornamental #traditional #realism
The natural complexity of butterfly and moth wings are ideal for Coen Mitchell's nuanced style. #avantgarde #animals #CoenMitchell #eyes #flow #hybrid #mosaic #mosaicflow #moth #ornamental #traditional #realism

Mitchell uses the term mosaic flow to describe his tattoos because of their recombinant nature. It's amazing how he brings together such a wide array of approaches to tattooing to create this vibrant ornamentation that collectively makes more definable images like these zoological busts.  

Ross HowertonFrom Tattoodo App
The way that Coen Mitchell uses just the right amount of color highlights, as seen in this giraffe, to offset his ornate work. #avantgarde #animals #CoenMitchell #flow #Giraffe #hybrid #mosaic #mosaicflow #ornamental #traditional
The way that Coen Mitchell uses just the right amount of color highlights, as seen in this giraffe, to offset his ornate work. #avantgarde #animals #CoenMitchell #flow #Giraffe #hybrid #mosaic #mosaicflow #ornamental #traditional
Ross HowertonFrom Tattoodo App
This panda by Coen Mitchell is as cute as the one that sneezes in that viral video. #avantgarde #animals #CoenMitchell #flow #hybrid #mosaic #ornamental #panda #traditional
This panda by Coen Mitchell is as cute as the one that sneezes in that viral video. #avantgarde #animals #CoenMitchell #flow #hybrid #mosaic #ornamental #panda #traditional
Ross HowertonFrom Tattoodo App
The ornate never looked so fierce. The eyes on this tiger by Mitchell are utterly mezmorizing. #avantgarde #animals #CoenMitchell #flow #hybrid #mosaic #ornamental #tiger #traditional #sexytattoo
The ornate never looked so fierce. The eyes on this tiger by Mitchell are utterly mezmorizing. #avantgarde #animals #CoenMitchell #flow #hybrid #mosaic #ornamental #tiger #traditional #sexytattoo

It's astonishing how many techniques are packed into each of these tattoos. Mitchell incorporates bold line work, subtle shading, complex patterning, slight stippling, and a touch of color to accentuate every piece. This versatile approach to tattooing makes his work stand out in an auteur manner. His mosaic flows are truly one of a kind.

Ross HowertonFrom Tattoodo App
This is probably what Mufasa looks like in heaven. Coen Mitchell's jungle cats are king. #avantgarde #animals #CoenMitchell #flow #hybrid #lion #mosaic #mosaicflow #ornamental #traditional
This is probably what Mufasa looks like in heaven. Coen Mitchell's jungle cats are king. #avantgarde #animals #CoenMitchell #flow #hybrid #lion #mosaic #mosaicflow #ornamental #traditional
Ross HowertonFrom Tattoodo App
This person wears their tattoo by Coen Mitchell with pride. The gem on the lion's forehead is spectacular, and the white accenting is fantanstic. #avantgarde #animals #CoenMitchell #flow #hybrid #lion #mosaic #mosaicflow #ornamental #traditional
This person wears their tattoo by Coen Mitchell with pride. The gem on the lion's forehead is spectacular, and the white accenting is fantanstic. #avantgarde #animals #CoenMitchell #flow #hybrid #lion #mosaic #mosaicflow #ornamental #traditional
Ross HowertonFrom Tattoodo App
Apparently this Doberman by Coen Mitchell likes to jump the fence a little too often. #avantgarde #animals #CoenMitchell #doberman #flow #funny #hybrid #mosaic #mosaicflow #ornamental #sexpositive #traditional
Apparently this Doberman by Coen Mitchell likes to jump the fence a little too often. #avantgarde #animals #CoenMitchell #doberman #flow #funny #hybrid #mosaic #mosaicflow #ornamental #sexpositive #traditional

If you liked touring this menagerie of ornate tattoos, you can see more of them on Mitchell's website. He's also on Instagram. If you want a tattoo from this genre-blurring artist, visit his shop in Auckland, NZ, and get your very own faithful animal companion for life.