Say it in Ink: 12 Archery
Tattoos We Love Say it in Ink: 12 Archery Tattoos We Love

Tattoos are more popular than ever, and as archery keeps growing in popularity worldwide, bows and arrows are increasingly super-fashionable as body art.

Even so, archery-based tattoos have long been popular. The bow and arrow is one of history’s oldest pieces of technology, and common to every culture on Earth. There’s something to be said for displaying such a defining symbol of humankind on your arm.

You might see a bow and arrow done in simple black ink, like this:

Tattoos are more popular than ever, and as archery keeps growing in popularity worldwide, bows and arrows are increasingly super-fashionable as body art. Photo Credit: prettydesigns.com

Tattoos are more popular than ever, and as archery keeps growing in popularity worldwide, bows and arrows are increasingly super-fashionable as body art. Photo Credit: prettydesigns.com

Or in full color, like this:

A bow and arrow tattoo can symbolize strength and power, or a sense of direction: You’re moving forward without looking back. Photo Credit: TattooBlend

A bow and arrow tattoo can symbolize strength and power, or a sense of direction: You’re moving forward without looking back. Photo Credit: TattooBlend

The meaning of bows and arrows can differ by person. For some people, bows and arrows represent Sagittarius, one of the zodiac signs. A bow and arrow can symbolize strength and power, or a sense of direction: You’re moving forward without looking back.

Recent popular tattoo designs feature arrows. The arrow has many symbolic meanings, ranging from masculine power and warfare to love, movement and direction. A broken arrow traditionally symbolizes peace, and crossed arrows symbolize friendship.

Another popular arrow tattoo design, sometimes called “Indian-style arrows,” usually features beautiful ornate feathers, like this one in black.

Some arrow tattoo designs feature beautiful ornate feathers. Photo Credit: FabulousDesign

Some arrow tattoo designs feature beautiful ornate feathers. Photo Credit: FabulousDesign

A group of arrows symbolizes unity and strength. A bundle of arrows is tougher than one, of course.

A group of arrows symbolizes unity and strength. Photo Credit: Style Interest

A group of arrows symbolizes unity and strength. Photo Credit: Style Interest

Another popular design uses more abstract, geometric arrows, like the awesome example below.

Abstract, geometric arrow tattoos provide visual appeal while representing the wearer’s love of archery. Photo Credit: Tattoo Journal

Abstract, geometric arrow tattoos provide visual appeal while representing the wearer’s love of archery. Photo Credit: Tattoo Journal

Meanwhile, others prefer their arrows a little more ornate.

Arrows are even more beautiful when converted into ornate tattoo art. Photo Credit: Style Interest

Arrows are even more beautiful when converted into ornate tattoo art. Photo Credit: Style Interest

We like this creative bow and heart arrow tattoo across two fingers.

Share your love of archery with a bow and heart arrow tattoo. Photo Credit: Style Interest

Share your love of archery with a bow and heart arrow tattoo. Photo Credit: Style Interest

You can also incorporate words into the design, like the cool tat below. Some people feature their family name within the arrow.

Motivational words or phrases can be incorporated into arrow tattoo art. Photo Credit: Spiritus Tattoo

Motivational words or phrases can be incorporated into arrow tattoo art. Photo Credit: Spiritus Tattoo

Some people prefer their archery a little less symbolic and more figurative, like this beautiful picture of a huntress in black ink.

This huntress tattoo is a figurative representation of bowhunting. Photo Credit: Spiritus Tattoo

This huntress tattoo is a figurative representation of bowhunting. Photo Credit: Spiritus Tattoo

Another type of tattoo is popular among a tiny number of archers: Olympians. It’s common for athletes representing their country at the Olympic Games to get a tattoo of the Olympic rings. These tats mark some of the proudest moments in the archer’s personal history.

Olympic archers often get their tattoo done on the outside of their forearm so you can see it as they shoot!

Khatuna Lorig (below) has competed in five Olympic Games, including two for Team USA in 2008 and 2012, and she won a bronze medal in Barcelona 1992. She has a full-color set of the Olympic rings on her right arm. Will she return for a sixth Olympics in Tokyo in 2020?

Five-time Olympic archer Khatuna Lorig has a full-color set of Olympic rings tattooed on her right arm. Photo Credit: Getty Images

Five-time Olympic archer Khatuna Lorig has a full-color set of Olympic rings tattooed on her right arm. Photo Credit: Getty Images

Brady Ellison (below) has competed in the past three Olympic Games for Team USA, and already has two tattoos on his arm commemorating his appearances at Beijing 2008 and London 2012. “It’s one of the things you see all the cooler Olympians having,” Ellison said. “I feel like the Olympic rings is the one tattoo that only we can get.”

Ellison, who took home bronze and silver medals from the 2016 Rio Olympics, is planning a third tattoo to commemorate that Games. “It will go next to the other ones!” he said.

(If you want to start down the long road to becoming an archery Olympian, the best place to start is your local archery store).

Brady Ellison is a three-time Olympian. He has tattoos commemorating the Beijing 2008 and London 2012 Games, and plans to add a third as a tribute to his performance in the Rio 2016 Games. Photo Credit: The Infinite Curve

Brady Ellison is a three-time Olympian. He has tattoos commemorating the Beijing 2008 and London 2012 Games, and plans to add a third as a tribute to his performance in the Rio 2016 Games. Photo Credit: The Infinite Curve

Finally, how about something a little different? This acrobat surprises and delights.

An acrobatic archer surprises and delights, both in person and in tattoo form. Photo Credit: Pinterest

An acrobatic archer surprises and delights, both in person and in tattoo form. Photo Credit: Pinterest

We hope this gave you a glimpse of the world’s amazing range of archery tattoos.

One obvious reminder, however: Never forget that tattoos are for life. Make sure it’s something you want to keep forever, and don’t trust the job to an amateur. Seek a reputable tattooist, and study their work before committing. Be patient. You’ll find plenty of inspiration and tattoo artistry on the internet.

If you have some proud archery ink, let us know in the comments below!

Looks Like You're In 

Not the right location?

Comment on this Article