Amazing Animated Tattoos & Body Art | Painful Pleasures Community

Amazing Animated Tattoos & Body Art

Both tattoo artists and digital artists have worked hard to make animated tattoos a reality. Turn your skin into a canvas for some truly innovative artwork.

by amber Last Updated: May 27, 2021

Pink Panther illustrations by tattoo artist Phil Berge for his next series of animated tattoos

Have you ever wished your tattoos could come to life? We’ve seen this vision on the big screen in sci-fi and fantasy movies, but shapeshifting ink is no longer just a work of fiction. Artists are constantly working to reinvent their craft, and while animated tattoos aren’t an entirely new concept, both tattoo artists and digital artists have been working hard to make these amazing tattoos a reality. With animated tattoos, you can turn your skin into a canvas for some truly innovative body art.

Tattoos In Flight

Artists have always been mindful of how the body parts they’re tattooing will affect the design.  Austrian tattoo artist Andre Zechmann designed a simple and elegant phoenix tattoo “in flight.” This tattoo’s design keeps the client’s body and her movements in mind, so when the client shrugs her shoulders, the wings move with them to give the illusion of the phoenix flapping its wings. Zechmann’s creative tattoo is a masterful example of how the body itself can work with tattoo art for authentically unique tattoos.


Creative Tattoos with Old School Animation

a series of illustrated dogs by artist Phil Berge for animated tattoos

While some artists incorporate the body’s movements into their animated tattoos, others create amazing tattoos by designing a series of tattoos to mimic film animation. Also known as “stop motion” tattoos or “flip book” tattoos, a series of tattoos are done across multiple clients with minor tweaks to each design. The tattoo artist photographs each tattoo so that when they’re viewed in succession, the series creates a single animated image. From dogs walking on leashes to a window looking out to a gradually setting sun, tattoos can capture real life moments. Artist Phil Berge has brought various scenes to life in the form of these animated tattoos, taking inspiration from the early days of animation and turning clients’ bodies into a new age flipbook. Read more about Phil Berge’s work here.

Motion Picture Tattoos

video mapped tattoo by Oskar and Gaspar

With the help of a little digital magic, artists can turn your body art into miniature motion pictures. Portguese artist duo Oskar and Gaspar founded a video mapping project in which they project animations onto the skin of tattooed individuals. Working with animation software, digital projectors, and the tattoos of artists Eduardo Cavelluci and Igor Gama, Oskar and Gaspar developed animations that use tattooed skin as both the subject matter and the canvas. Tribal patterns expand to engulf the whole body, while a snake illustrated with the same pattern slithers across the canvas’s torso. Ink even appears to fill, then drain, from the animated tattoos.

Truly amazing tattoos treat the body as more than just a canvas for artwork. With these animated tattoos, artists have actually based the artwork on the body’s shape and movements, allowing the body to transform body art into motion pictures. For more information and articles about tattoos, check out the PainfulPleasures blog.


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