Few images are as visceral as the spindly spider, and few tattoo styles are as bold as those drawn in the traditional hand. When the two are fused together, the results are truly impressive, if not downright creepy.

As far as subject matter goes, few are as intimidating as that of the arachnid variety.

The time-honored traditional style of tattooing calls for a strong drawing hand, using bold, heavily weighted outlines, and a solid but restrained use of color. Common colors used in traditional style tattooing include red, yellow, green, and of course, plenty of black.

While spider tattoos done in other styles, photo realism for example, may convey a more realistic depiction of the eight-legged creature, the strength of tradition style is unmatched for its sheer toughness.

In addition to taking advantage of a visually compelling subject matter, spider tattoos may symbolize the various “webs” of human existence. Webs of lies, webs that trap, webs of inter-connectivity – spider tattoos can represent some or all of these, or none of them. The symbolism of any tattoo is, of course, ultimately dependent on the mindset of the person receiving the tattoo. For many ink addicts, adding a traditional spider tattoo into the mix may simply be a matter of preference and filling space rather than having any deep symbolic meaning.


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