35 Medusa Tattoos That Are Hauntingly Beautiful

Medusa: the Greek woman with eyes that’ll turn a man straight to stone, and hair full of snakes. A powerful woman, whom many would’ve thought of often since childhood, remains a source of mystery and intrigue. Inking Medusa on your body is sure to fend off those that would seek to do you wrong.

Medusa are known to have a head of woman with snake writhing around her head. She is a Greek mythological figure who was once a beautiful maiden. She was one of three sisters, Medusa, Stheno and Euryale and was a priestess in the court of Athena. There are some differing reports on Medusa depending on whether your reading about her from the Greeks point of view or the Roman viewpoint. The Greeks described the three sisters as horrifically ugly and awful creatures. They were mean and pretty evil spirited although the Romans-specifically the poet Ovid-created her into a beautiful single maiden. She is thought to have had her hair turned into snakes thanks to Athena’s jealous reaction to Poseidon marrying her. Athena changed her beauty into ugliness and if someone even looked at Medusa, they immediately turned to stone. She then ran away from home because she was so upset by her appearance. She was impregnated by Poseidon much to Athena’s chagrin and then later beheaded by a suitor named Perseus. When she was killed, a horse left from her body. As you can see, it was pure chaos back then! It’s a tragically awful tale of evil and untamed yearnings and lost hopes and dreams.

There’s quite a bit of variation in her eyes as you’ll see in the work below. Sometimes it looks as if all the anger in the world is being unleashed through her eyes and then in other instances it’s as if your heart breaks for her heartbreak. There’s quite a bit of fodder that surrounds the Medusa character. Everyone from Sigmund Freud to the feminist movement to Versace have taken an interest in this compelling character.

Medusa artwork is not known to be the highest caliber although it is certainly popular in some circles. The following are an assortment of Medusa pieces that are both colorful and vivid. They are thought provoking and cause you to wonder what the deeper meaning could signify. Look at each piece and evaluate for yourself what you think they mean.

Do men or women get this artwork?

In the past, men have been known to get this art done but it’s become more and more popular recently for women to get it too. It holds quite a bit of symbolism in it and can be used to represent a lot of things in a person’s life. It can represent lost dreams, hopes that are no more and a myriad of other possibilities.

What colors are most popular?

Dark colors are often associated with this image because she is a dark and foreboding character. We’ve provided quite a few different looks and color schemes. You’ll see a variety of options and all of them look really good. It’s up to you on what looks best on your skin. In her mythological state, Medusa was known to have a green face and red-orange hair. When you looked closer at her hair, you realized they were red coiling snakes. The calamity that Athena brought down on Medusa made her an ugly woman that had snakes coming out of her head. You’ll see in the pictures below that there is a wide range of portraits of Medusa’s face as well as the coloring of her skin and the color of the snakes.

Where’s the best placement for Medusa Tattoos?

The forearm, leg and back are top places for this particular tattoo. It depends on the look you are going for. If you want it exposed so that everyone can view it then choosing a spot that is more visible may be the best option for you.

What’s the backstory of Medusa and what do the tattoos symbolize?

  1.  This black and white image causes the onlooker to do a double take at the eyes. They are ominous and empty and so evil looking. It almost looks like a black and white photograph. Her face appears grainy which is probably meant to really heighten her plight of misery.

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2. This is an example of a female who has the Medusa body art. The snakes are colored blue and the shading here is very well done. The swirling bodies of the snakes and her empty eyes creates a haunting depiction of this mythological character.

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3. When you initially look at this art, it appears to warped and evil. Upon closer inspection, do you notice how Medusa appears scared and almost like she is out of control? We wonder if the snakes are in charge or if she is? It’s as if she’s at a complete loss for the way her life is going. Thanks to Athena, Medusa was no longer a temple priestess but instead an outcast amongst those closest to her. There’s significant imagery here that can be relatable to many people and different circumstances they are dealing with in their own life.

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4. These snakes appear so lifelike, they appear to literally be coming off her head, off this woman’s body and out of the screen your looking at! The coloring is magnificent and the detail is exceptional. It eye catching and vibrant in color. The artist did a very nice job.

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5. Here’s an example where the image doesn’t have a lot of color but it really doesn’t need it thanks to the busyness of the overall picture. It still conveys power, ominous lurking of evil and control. She looks as if she’s on the prowl and ready to settle a score.

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6. Medusa was known to turn everything she gazed upon into stone. She was a tortured soul because of mistakes and double crossing Athena. The fallout from that was significant and cost her everything. The outlining and line work of this piece is very good. It’s extensive and appears to be on both legs.

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7. This piece has a zombie like quality to it. It’s chaotic and unnerving and the eyes are alarming and lifeless. Overall it’s a well done piece and don’t worry- people will definitely be asking lots of questions about this one!

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8. This is an interesting chest piece and it took a really long time to complete. As you’ve probably noticed, Medusa’s face is often an afterthought and a lot of emphasis is put on the snakes. This is a perfect example of that imagery. How many snakes do you count protruding forth?

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9. Cool in action shot of the artist inking this girl’s arm. The light and feminine color choices play upon the symbolism of Medusa perfectly.

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10. Nice detail here and the coloring is really eye catching. The snake is the star of the show for sure.

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11. This piece is extremely intimidating and frightening but it’s so well done. It evokes so many different emotions when people see it.

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More tattoos on the next page…

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