Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Classic Bird Tattoo Designs
Bird tattoo designs have always been extremely popular when compared to other designs, and this is basically because birds have always – in almost every culture – been considered as symbols of freedom and also of the spirit, soul and importantly of beauty. Their ability to soar high above the ground has earned them the reputation of being close to the gods. Certain religions even consider birds to be the creatures that pass on departed spirits to the afterlife.
Due to the religious and mystical connection they bear, bird tattoo designs have thus become extremely popular. References to birds have been found from all ages: from sticks figures in Egyptian tombs and pyramids to Christian depictions of angels and cherubs with wings. The costumes for the Ghost Dance of the Arapaho and even many traditional African weddings and other rituals have references to birds. The positive outlook to life that they symbolise has lead to people today being increasingly attracted to bird tattoo designs.
In popular myth, heroes would often be seen accompanied by their birds while pursuing mythical creatures of yore. It is often retold in myth that birds would be found to fly forward and return informing the hero of any looming obstacles. Perhaps this is the origin of the phrase that is so common: ‘a little bird told me’?
However keep in mind that in other countries birds – and hence bird tattoo designs – could mean entirely different things due to the different culture. For example in Chinese culture, the word for bird, niao, can also mean penis. Thus a sexual dimension is added to bird tattoo designs. Even in western culture, the reference to the penis as a cock dates as far back as Ancient Rome. In German, ‘having a bird’ is another way of calling a person insane. Obviously we would all know about ‘bird-brain’ being an insult! Though these references might not affect people with bird tattoo designs, it is important to remember them before deciding on a tattoo.