For anyone who has been living since the early 2000’s until now (or have kids around that time), it is safe to say you know Harry Potter. It was a series of books created by author J.K. Rowling that was soon adapted into a series of films. They got so big and so loved by people of all ages that Harry Potter tattoos are booming. Even now when the story is over, the magic still lives.
Fans of the franchise are known as Potterheads, coming from the main character’s surname. While some just collect various merchandise or create their own, others take their fangirling and fanboying to a new level. Here are some of the most amazing Harry Potter tattoos inspired from the books and the movies.
What (and Who) is Harry Potter?
Harry Potter is the main character of a series of books written by author J.K. Rowling. The first book was entitled “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone” and was published in 1997. However, some translations turned the title into “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.” After a year, a second book came out.
It was not until a year after the fourth book was released that the first movie came out. It starred child stars Daniel Radcliffe who played the titular role with Emma Watson and Rupert Grint as Hermione and Ron, respectively.
The movies became an instant hit and the books began selling more and more until it was translated to other languages and sold around the world. Since then, people are waiting for the next books and movies to come.
The last book which was entitled “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows” was published in 2007. However, the last two movies (based on the last book, split into two movies) happened in 2010 and 2011.
Two decades after the first book was published, the story remains alive, especially among fans. They continue to create art and design Harry Potter tattoos to keep it going.
Brief Summary of the Franchise
Harry Potter is a fantasy series set in a fictional London. The main character is pretty much an orphaned wizard who lives with his miserable aunt and her family. He learns he was a wizard after turning 11, as most wizards begin their education in witchcraft and wizardry schools. In this case, the infamous Hogwarts.
There are the goodies such as Harry’s best friends, Hermione and Ron. And there are also the baddies, such as the big villain Voldemort, who wants to kill Harry. The whole series is pretty much the three main characters trying to live while the big baddie tries to kill them.
There are seven books in total, each one for each year in Hogwarts. The story also involves new characters but mainly the good old characters we have all learned to love.
Since the story is all about wizards and witches, you can expect spells and mythical creatures. These are the usual subjects for Harry Potter tattoos. If you are a big fan of the franchise, you definitely know what these are.
Popular Harry Potter Tattoos
For those who are new to the fandom or are still unsure which design to choose, here are the most popular Harry Potter tattoo themes:
- Spells – There are a lot of spells in the world of Harry Potter. You can get a tattoo of your favorite spell. It’s pretty much like a quote tattoo but you can add a few elements such as the wand.
- Symbols – There are also popular symbols and signs in the Harry Potter world such as the Dark Mark and the Deathly Hallows. The Dark Mark is actually a tattoo worn by Voldemort’s minions. While it is considered as a bad sign in the fictional world, it has grown popular over Potterheads. Why not? It looks extremely badass and Voldie is the sort of villain you’ll hate to love. On the other hand, the Deathly Hallows is the combined sign of three of the most powerful magical items in the Harry Potter universe. It’s a perfect tattoo design for minimalist lovers.
- Mythical creatures – Harry Potter also has a lot of mythical creatures. Some are well-known even in the Muggle (term to use for non-magical people) world. But there’s a whole lot of creatures that are exclusive in the growing Harry Potter universe, especially with the release of a new Harry Potter spin-off movie called “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.”
- Pets – In Hogwarts, you are allowed to choose one pet from rats, cats, frogs, and owls. Perhaps the most famous pet in history is Hedwig, Harry’s white owl. He is known as a trusty and reliable friend to Harry, especially when he died protecting his master. As a dedication to this wise and courageous character (which could totally represent you), many get a tattoo of Hedwig.
Mythical Creatures and What they Could Stand For
There are a whole lot of creatures in the Harry Potter universe. However, here are some of the most magical Harry Potter tattoos based on these amazing creatures. Based off their characteristics and how they appeared in the franchise, you can also draw some meaning for them.
- Dragons – Of course, dragons exist in this fictional world. There are several kinds, but the most famous is the Hungarian Horntail which Harry had to face in the Triwizard Tournament. It is the deadliest of all the breed and is depicted horns and black scales. While getting one is just pure awesome, it can also be a symbol of your strength and courage.
- Three-Headed Dogs – Known as the Cerberus. This creature is originally known as the guard of the gates of Hades. However in the Harry Potter world, it guards a secret trapdoor. The Cerberus might be aggressive and frightening but just like dogs, they are softies as well. Getting one as a tattoo could also represent that.
- Hippogriffs – These elegant creatures are half horse and half eagle – two of the most noble creatures. You can get a tattoo of Buckbeak, the famous hippogriff in the movie. As a tattoo, it could stand for nobility, freedom, and strength.
- Thestrals – These are skeletal horse-like creatures that are only visible to those who has witnessed death. As a tattoo, it could depict the frailty of life and the acceptance of death. You can even have it as a dedication to a loved one who died who is also a Potterhead.
- Phoenix – The phoenix was also featured in the franchise. As a tattoo, this could represent resurrection and rising from the ashes.
Spells as Tattoo Designs
Spells are among the most popular designs when it comes to Harry Potter tattoos. Here are three of the greatest spells that you can use as a design plus some inspiration on how to do it:
- Wingardium Leviosa – It’s pretty much the first spell every Potterhead actually knew. It was used to levitate things. As a tattoo design, you can make it simple but choose the font of the franchise.
- Lumos – This spell enables a light to glow on the tip of a wand. As a design, you can add a wand plus an illuminating light at the tip.
- Expecto Patronum – This spell calls your Patronus, a glowing animal that keeps Dementors away. Dementor are known as representations of depression and this Harry Potter tattoo is a popular choice for those who suffer from depression.
There are a whole lot of spells in the Harry Potter world. You can choose your favorite spell and add a few elements that show its effect. Or perhaps, add a wand plus Harry’s glasses and a lighting scar and people would know what it is.
Tattoo Designs – Only in the Harry Potter World
The best thing about the Harry Potter universe is that it created one of the best fictional worlds. As any other, there are things only found in the the wizard world.
- Houses – Every Harry Potter fan know the houses: Gryffindor, Slytherin, Ravenclaw, and Hufflepuff. They have respective colors: red and yellow, green and gray, blue and gray, and yellow and black. You can have their house logos or scarves tatted on you.
- The Sorting Hat – The sorting hat is used on first years to determine which house they belong to. It’s like a wrinkly wizard hat with a face (sort of.)
- Round glasses and lightning scar – Harry is known to wear round glasses and has a lightning scar on his forehead. This could serve as a minimalist design. Some even add a Gryffindor scarf.
- Platform 9 3/4 – The infamous station where wizards and witches can find the Hogwarts Express. It’s a great number tattoo for Potterheads.
- Wands – The wands in the Potter universe are all distinct. You can research the design of the wand of your favorite character. But a popular choice among Potterheads is the Elder wand, the most powerful wand of all time.
- “Always.” – This one word was enough to bring every fan to tears. Many fans use the Deathly Hallow logo as a substitute to the letter “A” so it can be determined as a Harry Potter tattoo.
- Marauder’s Map – A cool design includes a pair of simple footsteps much like on the Marauder’s Map. Use blacklight ink to add “I solemnly swear that I am up to no good.” This was the password to access the magical map. Or you can put “Mischief managed”, the password to close it.
Harry Potter Quotable Quotes
Quote tattoos are also popular. With the seven books and eight movies, it is not surprising that there are many inspiring quotes. As children’s book, it teaches us how to live a better life as better individuals, disguised in the trials faced by the characters.
Here are some of the best quotes for your tattoo:
- It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live. – Albus Dumbledore
- It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends. – Albus Dumbledor
- I am what I am, an’ I’m not ashamed. – Rubeus Hagrid
- Things we lose have a way of coming back to us in the end, if not always in the way we expect. – Luna Lovegood
- Always. – Severus Snape
- Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean it is not real? – Albus Dumbledor
- The truth. It is a beautiful and terrible thing, and should therefore be treated with great caution. – Albus Dumbledore
- If you want to know what a man’s like, take a good look at how he treats his inferiors, not his equals. – Sirius Black
- It is the unknown we fear when we look upon death and darkness, nothing more. – Albus Dumbledore
Harry Potter Characters as 3D Tattoos
Apart from things we hear and see at the Harry Potter universe, you can also choose the characters we love. You can choose a minimalist approach and just put the most prominent features they have. For example, Ron’s red hair or Hermione’s curly ones.
But if you are indeed choosing a character as your tattoo design, it is best to turn it into a photo-realistic design.
There’s the iconic trio of the franchise and some of their friends we definitely love. There are Luna Lovegood, Neville Longbottom, Ginny Weasley and more. You can also choose any of their professors such as Severus Snape or Minerva McGonagall.
If you want a 3D approach, you have to find a tattoo artist who is comfortable with the style. It is definitely one of the most grueling styles as it requires mastery of skills and techniques. They should also work best with portraits if you want to choose the characters from the movie.
The Harry Potter franchise first began in 2007 and up until now, J.K. Rowling’s creation is still very much alive. While many fans show their love through merchandise, others choose to create Harry Potter tattoos.
There are many subjects and themes you can use to create a tattoo design. These are all from the world of the franchise: both the books and the movies.