Tattoos are raging in popularity today, with no signs that demand for them will be abating any time soon. In 1996, tattooing emerged as the sixth fastest growing industry in the country (behind internet and cell phone companies) and it is estimated that one new tattoo shop opens every day. A 2003 Harris Poll found that while 16% of the population is tattooed, that number blossoms to 36% for people between the ages of 25 and 29. However, for people contemplating their first (or fifth) tattoo, the choice of an image is often a stumbling block. A comprehensive, informative exploration of the colorful world of tattoos, The Tattoo Encyclopedia presents concise descriptions of symbols both common and unusual, and sheds light on their historic, religious, and cultural significance.
Organized in a convenient A-Z format, cross-referenced, indexed, and illustrated with 300 pieces of authentic tattoo line art by world renown tattoo artist Greg James of Sunset Strip Tattoo in Hollywood, it features a stunning array of images from ancient Buddhist and Chinese designs to those sported by twenty-first century bikers. The definition of each symbol (over 800 symbols) includes the widely accepted interpretation based on historical fact and cultural sources, as well as various interpretations that have developed across different cultures and time periods. Whether choosing a personally significant tattoo, wanting to learn more about a symbol, or simply interested in tattoos as a form of art and body decoration, readers will discover the richness of tattoo culture in this fascinating treasury.
“Looking for that perfect gift for your teenage son or daughter – that free-spirited, be-myself, make-a-statement child whose idea of establishing an identity is permanently dying their skin? Voila. It’s ‘The Tattoo Encyclopedia … ‘” — The St. Louis Dispatch
“Everything you wanted to know about tattoos but were afraid to ask….. the book will not only provide an invaluable tool to artists and collectors alike, it’s also a great read for trivia buffs.” — Tattoo Revue magazine
“… delves into the fascinating realm of why people get tattoos and what images they choose.” — Publisher’s Weekly
“Guilty pleasure” — Kansas City Star