watercolot bird tattoo on the side

Bird Tattoo Designs and Meanings

Birds’ tattoos are equally popular among men and women. The bird symbol embodies freedom and free-thinking and expresses the owner’s affinity with the air. In one culture they are envoys of goodwill and hope, in the other – “couriers” that bring the soul to heaven. The birds convey many different meanings and ideas but they are predominantly associated with beauty, vitality and swiftness.

The Meanings of Bird Tattoos

The bird images are quite contradictory and varied, they personify lightness, dreams, weightlessness, freedom and divine will. Their meaning is directly connected with the chosen creature and its basic qualities, where the most common associations are the following:

Peacock – is a purely positive image, which denotes royalty, nobility, beauty and sunlight. In China, the tattoo with peacocks means the high society.

Dove – is the symbol of the Holy Spirit in Christianity and reflects the universal concept of peace and the spiritual aspiration to the sublimity and perfection. It is considered as a sign of faithfulness, spring and nature on the East.

Raven – is a bird, which is perceived quite differently: in Western Europe and Egypt it is a negative image, a symbol of chaos and devil. In China, Japan raven identifies power, longevity and family ties.

Swan – the personification of true and faithful love, fidelity, pure soul and sincerity.

Swallow under the nest denotes dedication to family and maternal love. Due to its ability to fly very fast, it became a symbol of swiftness and ease.

Eagle – is the wisdom, power, strength and masculinity. It looks quite brutal on the male body, emphasizing the strongest qualities of the real man.

Hummingbird is mainly female sign. It does not only look bright and stylish but also symbolizes intuition, freedom, openness to the world and love of life.

Symbolism of Bird Tattoos

Each bird tattoo implies its own deep symbolisms, which depend on their location on the body and additional symbols, such as:

  • branch;
  • flowers;
  • nest;
  • wire;
  • a flock of birds;
  • cross, praying hands;
  • cat;

There are a great number of bird’s styles and designs:

  • realistic;
  • simple;
  • abstract;
  • old school style;
  • neotraditional;
  • detailed bird;
  • linework;
  • bird outline;
  • tribal;

The patterns can be presented in fabulous solutions of colors and sizes:

  • big;
  • small;
  • black bird;
  • blue;
  • colorful;
  • watercolor;
  • bird silhouette;
  • paper bird;
  • skull;
  • space;
  • Tweety bird;
  • Donald Duck.

Birds Tattoo Ideas

#1. Abstract Bird Tattoo on the Side

 abstract bird tattoo on the side
Abstractionism is a fresh and original style, which brings a bright hatch in this astonishing bird pattern on the side. The turquoise outline concentrates the whole attention to the central image. The bird sits on the branch in the background of the target, which symbolizes independence and desire to win.

#2. Big Bird Tattoo on the Back

big bird tattoo on the back
This tattoo represents an enormous bird on the back, its spread wings covers the both shoulder blades, which seems highly impressive. The bird is inked in dark shades of green and purple with a small mirror in its claw. The interesting nuance of this work is peacock feathers that personify nobility and greatness.

#3. Bird Flying Tattoo on the Arm

bird flying tattoo on the arm
People believe that a flying bird symbolizes the soul and is a conductor of the soul towards God and the mediator between earth and heaven. This idea is implied in this marvelous but sad bird image on the arm that keeps a red ribbon in its beak with a name of probably lost the person.

#4. Bird Hand Tattoo

bird hand tattoo
This amazing tattoo of a bird with additional symbols, such as flowers, masks and skull excites the imagination. It is executed in very colorful design on the hand – the popular place of tattoo for women. The mask is a symbol of illusory and a good way to show your reticence and duality.

#5. Bird Nest Tattoo on the Hand

 bird nest tattoo on the hand
Here is the meaningful pattern of bird’s nest that induces the best associations with family ties. The nest is a sign of the family man, who cherishes relations with spouse and children and wants to create a strong “family nest”. This lovely pattern on the upper arm will look great on the virile man.

#6. Bird on Branch Tattoo on the Leg

bird on branch tattoo on the leg
The bird and branch is an integral union in tattoos, however, this ornament on the leg illustrates the far more complicated idea. The woman’s portrait is complemented with a branch that appears from her head. This branch with blue berries is full of sprouts, which denote hope and the beginning of new life.

#7. Bird Outline Tattoo on the Arm

 bird outline tattoo on the arm
Usually, the outline tattoos are performed in black coloring but this bird image proposes another view on this design. The triple outline of black, blue and red seems quite extraordinary; it expands the general perception of this style and makes this small bird pattern brighter and more interesting.

#8. Small Bird Silhouette Tattoo on the Sleeve

bird silhouette tattoo on the sleeve
Are you looking for a bird tattoo that will be nontrivial and elegant at the same time? What about this bird silhouette on the shoulder – it is not a big variant, which includes many tints and shades: black, white, blue, yellow and it will determine your love to freedom and determination.

#9. Bird with Flowers Sleeve Tattoo

bird with flowers sleeve tattoo
In numerous Eastern countries, the bird symbolizes the spring not without reason. This colorful composition of flying bird surrounded the nice flowers immediately resemble nature awakening when everything in blossom and the first birds come back home. This tattoo may denote the owner in expectations of good changes in life.

#10. Bird Tattoos for Females on the Forearm

bird tattoos for females on the forearm
The women prefer tattoos on the wrists because they look very appealing and seductive there. In these works a couple of birds on each of the wrist are depicted in the form of a cross and signify the desire to be inseparable with beloved person – very romantic, isn’t it?

#11. Black Bird Tattoos for Girl on the side

black bird tattoos for girl on theside
The peaceable presentation of birds is more popular among ladies than two fighting ones. These two black birds on the side look aggressive and this drawing perfectly emphasizes the rebellious character of its owner. The fight is always a sign of contradiction or dissension, in this case, internal conflicts.

#12. Colorful Bird Tattoo for Guys on the Head

colorful bird tattoo for guys on the head
Are you a brave man, who is ready to experiment with your appearance? This wonderful design of two birds on the head will be a good chance to express your individuality. Here one bird is sitting on the branch, while the second one is flying towards it, thus, the picture seems very lively.

#13. Bird Tattoos for Men on the Arm

bird tattoos for men on the arm
If you like big bright images, this black bird ornament will be a perfect choice! This tattoo is located on the upper arm and shows a screaming bird with an orange object in its claws. The drawing is supplemented by green splashes, which almost penetrate the bird and indicates something negative.

#14. Peacock Bird Tattoo for Women on the Hip

peacock bird tattoo for women on the hip
Peacock is the most colorful bird and its unbelievable beauty is fully presented on this wonderful pattern on the thigh. The women like applying this majestic bird as a sign of their sublimity and superiority over others. Flowers in their turn make this image more delicate and graceful.

#15. Paper Bird Tattoo on Arm

paper bird tattoo on arm
The art of origami takes its root from Japan and now it finds its interpretation in the tattoo. This small paper bird inspires peace, beauty and relaxation. The extraordinary approach creates a piece of Japanese culture on the arm with a tender blue tint of the bird and the interesting effect of shadow in it.

#16. Watercolor Bird Tattoo on Back

watercolor bird tattoo on back
The tattoos along the spine are in a big trend today, as they form a nice symmetry on your back and in most cases, it looks unforgettable! This sweet string of birds in watercolor design is an ideal for girls, the smooth transition of colors make this tattoo delicate and creative.

#17. Tiny Bird Tattoos on Chest

bird tattoos on chest
There is a wide range of possible tattoo ideas on the chest but this one is something special. It consists of a set of tiny bird images in different positions: flying, sitting; each bird has its unique color, which finally creates a lovely union and symbolizes the love to freedom.

#18. Little Bird Tattoo on Foot

 little bird tattoo on foot
Swallow is a symbol of rebirth but when it is depicted with a sprig in its beak, it becomes a harbinger of spring, awakening and a new stage in life. Despite the small size, this incredible bird on the leg looks quite realistic, without frills that fits strong, serious men.

#19. Small Bird Tattoo on Shoulder

small bird tattoo on shoulder
The small tattoo has many advantages: it always looks moderate and elegant, thus, girls do not miss the chance to embellish their body with it, moreover, it is easily hidden. All these pluses illustrate this miniature flying bird. This tattoo on the shoulder says that its owner is a winner in life.

#20. Little Birds Tattoo on Wrist

 little birds tattoo on wrist
The wrist is frequently chosen as a place for tattoos; it is impossible to apply a big picture here but a small pattern looks very expressive too. Have a closer look at this dainty flock of little birds – quite simple work, which represent positive outlook on life and easiness.

#21. Skull Bird and Flowers Tattoo on the Back

 skull bird and flowers tattoo on the back
The flying skull bird with flowers is rather a contradictory union: the roses are associated with love, beauty and life, while skull induces the negative feeling of fear and death. The red roses not only look seductive on the woman’s back but resemble the color of blood, creating a very dramatic option!

#22. Bird Flying Away Tattoo on the Chest

bird flying away tattoo on the chest
The touching and gentle image of swallow wins a lot of weaker sex’s hearts, taking the important place in tattooing. Here this small flying bird in the realistic pattern is located on the woman’s chest and symbolizes a mother, who keeps house and is a heart of a family.

#23. Birds on a Wire Tattoo on the Wrist

birds on a wire tattoo on the wrist
The tattoo on the wrist belongs to the most feminine ornaments and the tiny pair of birds is the best suited for this particularly part of the body. Follow the fashion and apply these sweet birds on the wire, which are performed in traditional coloring and represents youth and love.

#24. Black Bird Tattoo on the Side

black bird tattoo on the side
The black raven often instills fear and apprehension, its black appearance connects with something evil. However, this bird may denote more positive notions: when it is depicted with outstretched wings, like in this marvelous work on the man’s side, it signifies leadership and the seriousness of the owner’s intentions.

#25. Colorful Bird Tattoo on the Forearm

colorful bird tattoo on the forearm
The monochrome pattern is unable to express the realistic beauty of the image like its colored analog. Take as an example this tattoo of the bird with a sprig. It is rich in bright and succulent tints: green, yellow, orange, black and red that create an unbelievable drawing on the forearm.

#26. Cross, Bird, Praying Hands Tattoo on the Fingers

cross, bird, praying hands tattoo on the fingers
Among the big variety of tattoos on the fingers, this one is highly noticeable: it consists of a range of small symbols, each of them is peculiar. Thus, the cross and praying hands have a deeply religious base and indicate faith in God, the dove, in its turn, symbolizes peacefulness and love.

#27. Detailed Bird Tattoo on the Back

detailed bird tattoo on the back
The eagle is an honored bird in many cultures, so its image can be seen very often in different tattoo works. The eagle embodies masculine traits of the character, such as power, confidence and endurance. This detailed picture of the flying bird on the lower back shows the superiority of the holder.

#28. Flock of Birds Tattoo on the Back

flock of birds tattoo on the back
This dainty variant is proposed for girls, who are looking for a tattoo with bird’s image in it. The tiny swallows with an inscription in Latin will be a beautiful decoration on the upper back. The meanings of hope, youth, freedom, luck and happiness are implied in this ornament.

#29. Freedom Bird Tattoo on the Back

 freedom bird tattoo on the back
If we need to describe freedom, the image of soaring bird is the first thing that comes to mind. This symbolic interpretation finds its place in this incredible pattern on the woman’s shoulder. The small picture of the flying swallow is an ideal option for independent and ambitious people.

#30. Little Bird Tattoo on the Arm

 little bird tattoo on the arm
The watercolor tattoos are always bright and unforgettable even if they are inked in one color. In this work on the upper arm, the little bird is performed in a red tint, which is associated with passion, love and life. The men can choose this design as a sign of courage.

#31. Love Bird Tattoo on Arms

love bird tattoo on arms
These two birds are placed on both forearms and present a union of feminine and masculine sex. It seems that the blue and pink birds are flying to meet each other, in this way, the owner emphasizes the love, devotion to the partner and the desire to be together forever.

#32. Old School Bird Tattoo on the Sleeve

old school bird tattoo on the sleeve
If you see the tattoo, which is performed in bright colors and are framed in bold black outline, it is definitely the example of old school genre. Here two birds are sitting among flowers on the sprig in the turquoise background. This is a small piece of spring on the forearm.

#33. Realistic Bird Tattoo on the Arm

 realistic bird tattoo on the arm
Bullfinch is a glorious winter bird with bright plumage, so it is predominantly depicted in realistic, vivid colorings, which is nicely illustrated in this ornament on the half-sleeve. This yellow and blue bird, sitting on the rowan, indicates inner strength, swiftness and ability to adapt to any conditions.

#34. Simple Bird Silhouette Tattoo on the Hip

 simple bird tattoo on the hip
When you look at this accurate silhouette of the small bird, it is impossible to imagine something more tender and exquisite for ladies. The mix of outline bird with a red rose in its beak looks extraordinary but very tempting on the hip. This idea gives a fresh note on common things!

#35. Small Bird Tattoo on the Chest

 small bird tattoo on the chest
The main message of any bird pattern is, of course, freedom, easiness and self-sufficiency, the size of the tattoo does not matter at all. It can be so small like this picture on the chest, which is easily hidden. This black and white bird is the best option for modest, gentle girls.

#36. Tiny Bird Tattoo on the Back

 tiny bird tattoo on the back
Despite the fact that the bird is a universal tattoo, appropriate for both sexes, nevertheless, you may try to make the pattern more impressive and personal. This cute blue image on the neck is supplemented by a teeny pink flower above the creature – the right choice for female design!

#37. Tribal Bird Tattoo on the Arm

 tribal bird tattoo on the arm
The contradictory image of raven does not have unanimous meaning in tattoo art. Its mystic appearance is perfectly shown in this drawing on the shoulder. The horrendous, black raven that consists of numerous birds in tribal style may denote the aggression and at the same time be a symbol of uncertainty.

#38. Tweety Bird Tattoo on the Leg

 tweety bird tattoo on the leg
The Tweety bird is a well-known for many kids and adults cartoon character. This small yellow creature proved itself as a funny and kind bird, which defeats the enemy using cunning. This idea of forearm tattoo is complemented with a humorous inscription “Mama’s boy”- a very creative choice, isn’t it?

#39. Unique Bird Tattoo on the Arm

 unique bird tattoo on the arm
This is another lovely cartoon pattern, located on the forearm. Here two little ducklings embody the image of little children. The first bird is holding the adult’s leg, while the second one is portrayed with a shell on its head. The owner of this tattoo adores the children, without a doubt.

#40. Blue Bird Tattoo on the Shoulder

blue bird tattoo on the shoulder
Are you keen on tiny, low-key tattoos? Then this simple bird idea is exactly what you need. It is performed in blue outline on the shoulder without any special additions. The bird expresses openness, which is particularly valuable for the youth.

#41. Three Bird Tattoo on the Arm

three bird tattoo on the arm
This tattoo on the forearm includes three living blue swallows. The picture is done in the most realistic manner, so it seems that the birds are really flying on your body. The picturesque pattern is used as a strong amulet, as the swallows avert misfortune and bring happiness in your life.

#42. Donald Duck Tattoo

Donald Duck tattoo
Donald Duck is one of the most recognizable cartoon characters in the world, so if you choose this amazing hero, you will not have a chance to go unnoticed. Here the duck wears a famous marine costume and is placed on the man’s shoulder. Do not waste time and apply this bright image!

#43. Neotraditional Bird Tattoo on the Sleeve

 neotraditional bird tattoo on the sleeve
The neotraditional style gives a confirmed answer to typical tattoo designs. It is characterized by unexpected freshness and vivid images. Using this modern style you will get the ornament that looks life-asserting. This peculiarity is perfectly shown in this tattoo of the large blue bird under the pink flower on the upper arm.

#44. Halfsleeve Bird with Flowers Tattoo

halfsleeve bird with flowers tattoo
Two significant symbols are depicted in this marvelous tattoo on the half-sleeve. The bird is considered a sign of independence, while red poppies are appreciated in many nations and denote valor and military honor. The whole composition resembles a meaningful, rich in deep colors picture.

#45. Space Bird Tattoo on the Forearm

 space bird tattoo on the forearm
As a rule, the cosmic theme in tattoos is chosen by dreamers and visionaries, because space remains the puzzle for people. This union of space and a bird on the forearm is very successful – together they signify peace, completeness and integrity that the owner may require in life.

#46. Bird Tattoo on the Finger

 bird tattoo on the finger
The tattoo on the finger is something unique that will definitely impress the people. Taking into account the lack of place, this pattern of birds is done in extremely small size. The tiny bird that follows the bigger one may embody the family relationship between mother and her child.

#47. Cat & Bird Tatto on the Arm

cat & bird tatto on the arm
The idea of a big, fat cat and a small defenseless bird seems highly natural on the forearm. In life, the same scene induces the feeling of compassion and sympathy toward the bird. The following composition in black and gray tint stresses the owner’s wish to overcome all difficulties and troubles.

#48. Colorful Bird Tattoo on the Hip

colorful bird tattoo on the hip
The lovers of shining, saturated coloring cannot ignore this unbelievable bird creativity on the thigh. The huge purple bird that is sitting on the green sprig shows an incredible combination of colors. This is rather extravagant work for confident girls, who dream to be in the center of public attention.

#49. Watercolot Bird Tattoo on the Side

watercolot bird tattoo on the side
The geometry brings additional meaning to familiar tattoo and the watercolor design enhances the intensity of images. In this pattern on the side, the right triangle almost penetrates the orange and turquoise bird, which accentuates on the unity of the three components of the person – body, mind and soul.

#50. White Swan Tattoo on the Arm

 Swan tattoo on the arm
The symbol of the swan is constantly associated with purity and perfection of a romantic relationship. If you want to express your love and dedication to another person, there is no better way to express it than to apply this gorgeous bird. What about taking such graceful swan on your shoulder?

#51. Linework Bird Tattoo on the Hip

 linework bird tattoo on the hip
The spring is a season when nature awakens and regenerates and this tattoo of a bird with blossom will always remind you of this wonderful time. The linework style adds strictness to this picture and if you are a fan of minimalism and geometry, you should certainly put your mind to it.

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