11 Bat Tattoo Ideas to Get You in the Spooky Spirit
Bats are the subject of nightmares and fairytales—creepy, winged creatures that take to the skies at night. But bat tattoo designs offer some seriously cool options for a new piece from your favorite tattoo artist.
Tattoos of bats can range from sweet and cute to dark and gothic. The different species of bats and the way artists can draw and shape their wings offer a variety of ways to place a tattoo on the body.
Let’s dive deeper into the shadowy world of bat tattoos so that you can find artistic inspiration for your next spooky piece of body art.
The Meaning of Bat Tattoos
Bat tattoos can mean a myriad of things to the people who choose to wear them. Bats have a history of being associated with witchcraft, darkness, and death. In many historic depictions and folklore, bats are the symbol of evil spirits, trickery, and even decay.
People may choose to tattoo bat designs on their bodies to feed and satisfy their gothic style and aesthetic.
But not all bat-themed body art has a foreboding meaning. In fact, there are plenty of bat-themed tattoos that pay tribute to the more positive aspects of bats. These flying critters are a symbol of happiness, prosperity and good fortune in Chinese culture. They are also hugely beneficial to farmers by helping to control pest populations.
Additionally, bats have a keen sense of intuition. Because they rely on echolocation, bats can symbolize sight in the darkness or self-awareness.
But ultimately, if done right, bat tattoos just look badass. Not all tattoos need to have a meaning, so if you want a bat inked on your body for no particular reason, no one should judge.
Things Consider When Getting a Bat Tattoo
If you are thinking about working with an artist to get a bat tattoo, decide on the tattoo style you’d like for the artwork. These designs can be done in almost any style including traditional, realism, neo traditional, and illustrative. Consider whether you want the tattoo in color or in black and grey. Blackwork bat designs are also popular.
The overall look and style that you want will help you narrow down an artist to complete your tattoo.
Talk to your artist about placement. Since bats have wings, you’ll want to consider whether you want the wings open wide or folded around the bat. Bat designs with open wings look great as sternum tattoos or chest tattoos, but if you have a small gap to fill, you may want to consider choosing a wing design that takes up less space.
Also, think about whether or not you want any additional design elements in your tattoo, such as jewels, flowers, or ornamental filigree. Communicate those requests to your artist in advance and trust that your artist will put together a design that fits your needs, your budget, and your body.
Bat Tattoo Inspiration from Female Artists
The options for getting your perfect bat-themed are endless. Check out these amazing bat tattoo designs from some of our favorite artists to find inspiration for your next piece of body art.
Bat and Flower Tattoo by Stephanie Melbourne
U.K.-based tattoo artist Stephanie Melbourne, who works at The Church Tattoo Studio proves that bat tattoos can be absolutely adorable. By adding pink flowers and berries, this illustrative bat tattoo comes to life and looks precious—even with those sharp teeth!
Moody Fruit Bat by Cori Henderson
Also from the U.K., Cori Henderson takes a slightly darker approach to this bat. She blends deep browns and blacks for the bat’s body and uses rich purples to make the plum design elements look juicy. We love the dark green leaves, strawberries, and little floral accents that finish off this amazing bat tattoo.
Hanging Black and Grey Bat Tattoo by Alisa Affatato
There’s just something about this hanging bat design by Pennsylvania-based artist Alisa Affatato that we adore—probably his big, batty eyes. Affatato, who works at Noble Heart Tattoo in Jenkintown, peppers in plenty of black shading to give this little guy detail. We love the little pop of red color in the fruit and the tiny star accents.
Bat Hand Tattoo by Ashley Luka
If you’re going to go for a bat tattoo, there’s nothing that makes a statement more than putting it right on your hand where everyone can see it. This colorful guy by Ashley Luka, who is based in Birmingham, England at Brass Heart Tattoo, is nicely detailed and so much fun. The glow-y yellow and the dotted crescent moon in the background are great touches.
Brown Bat Tattoo by Adriana Malquer
We’re obsessed with the minimal color palette on this hanging bat by Barcelona-based artist Adriana Malquer, who works as a resident at Seny Tattoos in the city. The symmetrical placement of the wings and the linework really gives this piece a strong look, and that fading from mustard yellow to orange to deep brown is really lovely.
Bat Chest Tattoo by Arielle Gagnon
We love how Montreal-based tattoo artist Arielle Gagnon incorporates jewelry, fruits, and flowers into her tattoos, and this bat chestpiece offers a stunning combination of her skills. The double hanging fruit bats fits the chest area so nicely and Gagnon brings it all together with a beautiful, filigreed jewel in the middle.
Purple Bat by Corin Webb
Alabama-based artist Corin Webb is known for her colorful designs, and she doesn’t disappoint with this purple and pink hanging bat tattoo. Instead of cowering in fear from this bat, we kind of just want to give it a hug and build it a Barbie Dream Cave or something.
Bat and Pumpkin Tattoo by Alexandra Fische
Philadelphia tattoo artist Alexandra Fische is the queen of spooky and cute tattoos. Her illustrative style is instantly recognizable and she crushes bat tattoo designs. In fact, she had so many batty tattys on her Instagram account, that it was hard to choose a favorite. But we love this little guy, who looks like he’s clinging on to a jackolantern for dear life. So cute. So cool. Enough said.
Astronaut Bat by Shae Motz
If we were giving out an award for most creative bat tattoo, it would probably go to Calgary-based tattoo artist Shae Motz for this bat astronaut. We’re obsessed with his space suit and how she managed to get that reflective quality on the bubble helmet. The planets are colorful and fun too. It’s definitely a favorite.
Crescent Moon Fruit Bat by Ash Sheridan
Dublin tattoo artist Ash Sheridan is fully aware that bat tattoos don’t have to be dark and creepy. For her client, she gave this particular bat an adorable face and accented the design with purple flowers. Plus, the little guy is hanging from a crescent moon. What more could you want?
Anatomical Bat by Katy Wiedemann
Tattoo artist and scientific illustrator Katy Wiedemann, who works out of The Iron Dahlia in Pennsylvania, does wonderful linework tattoos that take a scientific approach. This particular bat is done to look like one of Wiedemann’s technical illustrations and shows off detail in the skeletal wing. Who doesn’t love some science?