The Aztecs were a powerful tribe of people from central Mexico, dating back to the 12th century. They were a culturally advanced people and their society flourished until around the 16th century. They created magnificent architectural designs, evolved into a complex culture with religious significance and had a unique style of artistry. Aztec tattoo designs are extremely popular with people who share the heritage, for people who identify in some way with the race or culture, and those who just appreciate the beauty of Aztec art. Aztec tattoo designs are striking and instantly recognizable and as such make a great choice for tattoo enthusiasts.
Before you visit a tattoo parlour, you can browse online for choices of Aztec tattoo designs, or just specific examples of Aztec art that speak to you. Other ideas are to search through textbooks or historical societies databases of images. Many Aztec images symbolize power, honor, and loyalty. They had specific images to represent their gods. There are numerous recurring images you will come across, here are a few you can consider:
A sun image the sun image was a vital part of the culture of the Aztecs. Their sun god, Huitzilopochtili, was considered the guardian of the heavens. An Aztec sun tattoo can then convey messages of life, protection, strength or eternity.
The Aztec calendar is also a popular design, but it is also rich in detail.
The eagle this was a symbol of the Aztecs strength as warriors and can speak to ability and power
Quetzalcoatl – the Aztecs feathered serpent god, can make for an elaborate and wonderfully colorful tattoo
Tlaloc their Aztecs provider of rain, fertitlity, and lightning
Xochiquetzal the Aztecs goddess of beauty and female sexual power
Yacatecuhtli the Aztecs god of merchants and travelers
Tonantzin the Aztecs mother goddess
Tloquenahuaque their creator god or ruler
Ixtlilton the Aztecs god of healing, dancing, games and festivals
The amount of detail in the image will be important in choosing the size of the Aztec tattoo designs and their locations. Once you decide on an image, you can browse through the samples of work at the tattoo parlour you choose. That way you have a good sense of what the original art looks like, and then you and your tattoo artist can incorporate new design elements into existing images they have, or play around with size and color.
Whatever image you choose, Aztec tattoo designs are usually intricate and profoundly symbolic, with a strong cultural flavor. The Aztecs influence was wide-spread and is still felt today. They are an excellent alternative the large amount of generic designs out there. They are striking choices for tattoos and come with an ancient history that you will now be linked to. Remember, as with any tattoo, it is yours, so finding something that speaks to you on a deep level is important.