That way you can never get lost.

Nautical tattoos have long ruled our tattoo studio: from anchors to a compass tattoo.

The first compass dates back to the first century B.C. in China. 

They were mainly used by Feng Shui masters. They believed that compass direction influenced luck and success in life.

We know the compass as an object for finding our way. Below is more info and some examples of compass tattoos.  


Meaning of a compass tattoo

A compass tattoo was first seen on sailors. The design then resembled a nautical star: the stars showed the way home. With this tattoo, the sailor had a better chance of getting home safely.

Because people attached great importance to the symbolism of the compass, they painted compasses on the ships.

Ships often disappeared into the raging sea. The compasses had to protect the ship from the deep waters.

Today it is not only sailors, who walk around with a compass tattoo. This tattoo is often requested for the following reasons: 

  • Guide through life

The compass symbolizes the navigation of your life's journey.

  • Independence

You leave your comfort zone, and choose how you want to live your life. 

  • Orientation

You know your purpose, and the compass helps you navigate. Self-confidence and ambition are terms that are central here.

  • Happiness

A compass can help bring persons who are lost back on track. 

  • Travel

Wanderlust and an urge to explore the world.


Compass tattoo designs

Designs of compass tattoos are often combined with other elements, such as a map, animals, nature elements.... 

A compass tattoo can be tattooed in a variety of styles: fine line, photorealism (both color as black 'n grey), watercolor


Vegvisir compass

It does not always have to be a literal compass tattoo.

The vegvisir symbol is also known as the Viking compass. The Icelandic translation of Vegvisir is "that which shows the way. This symbol is described in the Huld manuscript, an Icelandic collection of proverbs. It describes that the Vegvisir ensures that one never loses one's way during a storm or bad weather, even when the destination is unknown.

The vegvisir consists of eight Viking runes: four represent the wind directions (north, east, south, west) and four represent the intermediate wind directions (northwest, northeast, southwest, southeast). 

Some believe that placing a nail in the center of the vegvisir would indicate direction. The nail would then cast a shadow at certain times, allowing the Vikings to navigate across the sea. 

Inksane newsletter: fine line tattoos
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Do you want a compass tattoo? Have you thought about the style, color or black 'n gray, placement on your body?

Good! Then you can contact our reception.

Send a email or stop by, and share your ideas with us. Our front desk will listen carefully, and then match you with the best suited artist. We will also give you an indication of the price.

This info is free and without obligation. You are certainly not required to secure an appointment.

If you still have questions, you can take a look at our FAQ list


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