As one of the ocean’s most adorable inhabitants, it’s no wonder that cuttlefish are a popular choice for tattoo-lovers across the world.
These small cephalopods belong to the same family as squids and octopi, and you can easily see the resemblance with their genetic cousins in their slitted eyes and bunch of front-facing tentacles.
Unlike many other molluscs, cuttlefish are able to change the patterns and colour of their skin to blend into their environment, creating dazzling displays and proving tattoo artists with a lot of design freedom.
Alongside this, though, they are also well-known for their intelligence.
Most people choose squids and octopi for their cephalopod tattoos, but cuttlefish can also be a great option.
Let’s take a look at the meaning behind tattoos like this, along with some ideas to give you inspiration for your own tattoo designs.
The Meaning Behind Cuttlefish Tattoos
Much like other cephalopods, cuttlefish are incredibly intelligent compared to their counterparts inhabiting the ocean.
They are believed to be able to count, they can deliberately trick other cuttlefish, and they are able to camouflage themselves to hide in their surroundings.
Many people will see similar traits in themselves. For example, your cuttlefish tattoo could symbolise your ability to meld into social situations and be the life of the party.
Likewise, though, it could also be used to show that you are intelligent and are able to think for yourself.
The camouflaging abilities of a cuttlefish can also be a good source for the meaning behind a tattoo featuring these cephalopods.
There are several different types of creatures in the animal kingdom that share the ability to change colour to match their surroundings. Very few are capable of changing the patterns on their skin in the process, though.
Cuttlefish are able to achieve this feat of nature by altering the structure of special organs within their skin.
Not only does this mean that your tattoo can convey your great intelligence, but it can also be used to show that you are adaptable and unique.
Like a peacock that can change its feathers or a chameleon with good fashion sense.
Cuttlefish Tattoo Design Ideas
Choosing the perfect design for your tattoo is always a challenge, and this is something that you will need to work through when you’re going through this process.
You will have to make this big decision for yourself, but we’ve gathered some popular cuttlefish design ideas for you to draw inspiration from.
Cute & Colourful
Cuttlefish are well-known for their colourful bodies and ability to change their appearance, and this is something that you can draw a lot of inspiration from when designing your tattoo.
Thanks to their camouflaging abilities, you can choose just about any mix of colours for your tattoo, though many people will want to choose options that reflect the colours of the ocean.
Alongside this, you could also lean into the cuteness exhibited by cuttlefish when coming up with your design.
While these small ocean creatures are cute in the typical sense, adding cartoony eyes and making their proportions broader can result in a cephalopod that looks far sweeter than a squid could ever be.
Designs like this can be hard to achieve, and it will be well worth looking for an artist with experience drawing adorable creatures when you choose to go down this route.
Realism is a popular choice for modern tattoos, with today’s tattoo guns being able to produce a wide variety of textures that enable artists to embrace their creativity.
A realistic cuttlefish would look at home with other nature-based tattoos, giving you the chance to give a good feel of the ocean habitat that this animal occupies.
This type of tattoo can be surprisingly easy to design. Tattoo artists will often be very happy when you provide them with a photograph of your source material.
Despite their shyness, you can find countless images of cuttlefish around the web. This gives you a great way to source your inspiration, while also giving you the chance to choose an image that you really love for your tattoo.
An Attacking Cuttlefish
While they may look shy and vaguely cuddly, cuttlefish are willing to fight when the going gets tough.
Thanks to the sharp beak nestled within their tentacles, these cephalopods are able to catch prey and fend off other fish without breaking much of a sweat. This could make a great tattoo for those looking to convey the right meaning.
A tattoo like this can be used to symbolise the touch interior that hides within your much friendlier exterior. You might not look like a fighter, but you will still defend yourself and those you care about.
Tattoo meanings like this are very common, but using a cuttlefish to show it is a unique idea that will stand out.
Getting Help With Your Design
Tattoo artists don’t just draw on the skin; most will also be able to design the artwork you want, too. This gives you an excellent opportunity to get some help when you’re working on the design for your cuttlefish tattoo.
It’s always worth being detailed and offering all of the information you can when you are talking to your artist.
If you want your cuttlefish tattoo to symbolise your ability to adapt, for example, it makes sense to be open with this. This will make it easier for your artist to design something that reflects exactly what you want from your tattoo.
Choosing the right tattoo can take a lot of time. It’s always worth making sure that you feel very happy with a design before you go for it, especially when you’re looking for a tattoo of something like a cuttlefish.
These creatures are intricate and complex, and getting the perfect image is no mean feat.