Two decades after his grandparents passing, one Reddit user, who we shall call “Eric,” found out that he had inherited a farmhouse once owned by his late family members. Little did he know at the time, the property would lead him to an astounding discovery.
They Left Behind a Huge Secret
A Reddit user who we shall call “Eric” was sad to have lost his beloved grandparents and was eventually asked to clean out their farmhouse in Tennessee. As far as he was concerned, it was simply the right thing to do. However, a handful of clues led the young man to make a huge discovery, the likes of which he never saw coming. And it showed up in the most unexpected of places – under an old, tattered carpet…
Years of Neglect
It’s so easy for our homes to collect dust and appear to have been neglected after just a couple of days. So you can imagine how old and dusty Eric’s grandparents’ farmhouse appeared to be after having been abandoned for literally decades. The old home hadn’t been lived in since 1997, meaning that it had been over 20 years since anyone had touched it. As far as Eric was concerned, there was only one thing to do with the house…
Illness Made Them Leave Everything Behind
There is a very sad reason as to why Eric’s grandparents were forced to leave their Tennessee farmhouse in 1997. Apparently, his grandpa was diagnosed with lung cancer and as a result, they decided to pack their bags so that they could have easier access to medical care, as well as their family. After his grandfather passed away, neither his grandmother nor his father ever returned to the house. And that was just the start of it…
More Family Tragedy
As the years passed, Eric’s family experienced even more tragedy. Not only did his grandmother pass away, but so did his father. According to Eric, he “passed in 2009” and with hardly any relatives with an emotional connection to the farmhouse, it was becoming something that Eric kept putting off. He knew he had to do something about this place. As far as Eric was concerned, there was only one thing to do with the house…
He Wanted to Sell the Place
Seeing that it probably would have proven to be too expensive to keep the farmhouse and maintain it, Eric felt like he was left with no other choice but to sell the property. However, as he was walking through the dusty carcass that was once a home for the first time, Eric still knew he had a lot of work cut out for himself. He couldn’t even think about selling the place until it was up to a certain standard…
Time to Clean
Eric knew deep down that no one was going to purchase his grandparents’ farmhouse if it was ridden with dust, cobwebs and mildew. The property looked like it was about to collapse and this meant only one thing: Eric needed to make some serious changes in order to make the home liveable once again. After just a couple of days, Eric was already doing a fine job with the place. Halfway through cleaning the home though, Eric remembered something about his grandparents…
His Grandparents Loved Treasure…
While he was in the middle of cleaning the farmhouse, there was something about his grandparents that Eric had fond memories of. According to him, his grandfather was a sailor who at one point, was chased by pirates! His grandparents often read Treasure Island to him in that very house. It seemed like he always associated these two important people in his life with treasure. By that logic, Eric was convinced that they must’ve hidden some things around the farmhouse…
First Stop? The Closet
Without haste, Eric started to search the half-clean house for anything that his grandparents might have left behind for someone like him to discover. The first place that Eric looked for any potential “treasure” was one of the closets. At first, when he opened the door to look inside, there didn’t seem to be anything of noteworthy importance. However, as he took a step back and looked down, things started to change very quickly for Eric…
Next Stop? The Carpet
After looking down and feeling slightly disappointed, Eric noticed that he was standing on a carpet. In order to restore the farmhouse to its former glory, Eric knew that he’d need to remove the carpet, especially since it didn’t smell so good. Lo and behold, as he began to tear it away from the surface, Eric noticed something strange lying beneath it. Naturally, the young man scratched his head and wondered what it could be. Then, it hit him…
There’s Something Underneath
Eric was sure that there was something hiding underneath the carpet and began to remove it from the surface of the floor. What had started as a pretty ordinary day of cleaning was beginning to turn into something very different indeed. Lo and behold, as he began to tear it away from the surface, Eric noticed something strange lying beneath it. Naturally, the young man scratched his head and wondered what it could be. Then, it hit him…
A Concrete Safe?
This is the moment in the story when things really started to take an unexpected turn for Eric. As he gazed at the strange-looking structure for a couple of minutes, he came to the conclusion that it was some sort of safe that had been positioned underneath the carpet so that no one would find it. However, it was covered in concrete and seemingly impossible to open. Eric knew that something covered in concrete must be hiding something secret…
Is it a Safe?
At first, Eric had no idea what this strange slab of concrete was hiding under his grandparents’ carpet. Moreover, it was inside an inconspicuous cupboard. Initially, he thought it was just a throwaway addition to the farmhouse. Then, he began to wonder. What if this strange-looking square-shaped slab of concrete was actually a safe that his grandparents were keeping a secret? After all, there was a circular shape in the middle of its face. He simply needed to know the truth…
What Were They Hiding from Him?
One thing was for sure, Eric was convinced that his grandparents were keeping something hidden from the world. As previously mentioned, he knew that they were the kind of people who had an affinity for “treasure.” Also, his grandmother was apparently a collector of artifacts. While his grandfather loved nothing more than collecting antique “arms.” But what exactly was hidden away in this concrete safe? And how exactly would Eric possibly open this thing?
Mom Confirmed His Theory
Desperate to know for sure if this strange slab of concrete was a safe or not, he contacted his closest family members to see if they had any intel on the subject. Surely enough, his mother had the answers to all of his questions. “I spoke with my Mom, and she said that my grandparents had a safe in Florida,” he said. However, his mother also had some more useful information, specifically of how to open this mysterious safe…
Dad’s Birthday Is the Combination!
Not only was Eric’s mother able to confirm that his grandparents had hidden a safe, but she also had an idea of how to open it. According to her, the combination of the safe was her husband’s date of birth. And in case that did not work, she recommended that Eric tried out his father’s social security number. Now that Eric’s theory was finally confirmed, all he had to do was open this mysterious safe…
He Tried Opening It
As he tried out the combinations his mother had suggested, Eric was disappointed to find that none of them worked. At the very least, the safe wasn’t opening, regardless of whether or not they did. While trying to tug the handle, nothing would budge, no matter how hard he tried. It was just a matter of time before Eric realized that he would require some professional assistance if he was going to find out what was inside this safe…
Time to Get a Locksmith
How exactly would Eric manage to crack this safe open? It didn’t appear to have a working lock or a way to crack the code. This required professional expertise, so Eric decided to contact a locksmith who might literally hold the keys to his problems. However, seeing that he had found the safe on Sunday, there was no one available that day. He was going to have to wait. Was this going to be an impossible task?
Despite having to wait, Eric was determined to get that concrete safe open. When Monday came around, he contacted a locksmith who made his way to the farmhouse. According to Eric though, it took the locksmith half an hour before he exclaimed that this was some sort of impossible task. Apparently, the locksmith would have “referred the job to someone else” if he knew what he was getting himself into. Despite this though, their strenuous efforts eventually paid off…
It Was Almost Ready
Despite struggling for hours, both Eric and the locksmith were extremely determined to crack it open and discover its contents. As the locksmith chipped away at the concrete, the opening of the safe started to look more and more like a lock. Specifically, it was looking increasingly likely that Eric would eventually manage to open it. However, it would take another few hours of hard work and patience before they finally found the opening they were looking for…
He Cracked the Code!
After many hours of chipping away and patience, Eric and the locksmith managed to find the lock that they were looking for. It’s unclear whether or not the locksmith stayed to see what was inside. At any rate, though, Eric managed to insert the correct code to the lock and voila, it opened. Now, the moment of truth had finally arrived. Was Eric on the verge of something truly special? Or was he on the verge of a whole lot of nothing?
Are Those Books or Boxes?
Upon first glance, Eric was sure that what he could see was a big pile of books. Or maybe they were boxes. Or, maybe they were neither! It was unclear, to begin with, and Eric wasn’t ruling out any possibility. Were they the antique “arms” that Eric grandfather had been raving about? Or were they the artifacts his grandmother held so close to her heart? As he dug deep into the safe, everything became a whole lot clearer…
He Was Unimpressed…At First
As he tried to unearth what was inside that old, concrete safe, Eric’s expectations started to dip and what was once excitement soon became a hollow sense of disappointment. He was sure that the contents were nothing more than some mundane books, empty boxes and a handful of coins. However, as he took a closer look at each object, Eric soon had plenty of reasons to get excited once again and this wasn’t the only place in the house where he’d find something special…
This Book Survived a Flood
The very first item that Eric cleaned up and had a good look at was this book. As you can see based on the photo, the book in question was pretty damp after years of neglect. This is due to the fact that just a couple of years prior, the farmhouse had fallen victim to a terrible flood. Thankfully though, the contents of the safe weren’t completely damaged. Make no mistake about it though – Eric was about to get excited again…
Extremely Rare Coins
Although Eric was upset to find some wet dollar bills that had been damaged by the floor there was still plenty of reason for excitement. As he opened up the book, Eric found tons of coins that had been well-preserved. Moreover, it turns out that they are extremely rare and his grandparents did the right thing by locking them up in a safe. However, that was only scratching the surface of Eric’s discoveries that day. There was so much more…
More Money, Less Problems
It turns out that there were plenty more dollar bills stacked away inside that safe and while they too were pretty damp, Eric believed that they stood more chance of being salvaged than the other bills he previously found. All he would have to do was separate them and dry them out with some professional assistance. Then, as he dug deeper into the safe, Eric made his biggest discovery yet. Things seemed to be getting better and better…
Thousands of Dollars!
Towards the bottom of the safe, Eric was excited to find what he believed was a few hundred dollars worth of coins. As he looked closer though, he started to realize that there were in fact, more like thousands of dollars worth of rare coins! Eric started to believe that he was sitting on some sort of goldmine. However, he couldn’t figure this out all by himself and knew that he needed some second opinions from as many people as possible…
What Are These Silver Bars?
Another fascinating set of items that Eric discovered were these rare silver bars. Unsure what they were at first, Eric learned that they were rare and special because they had been inscribed with the dates that Connecticut and two other American states were founded on. Seeing that their historical significance was unquestionable, it was clear that they would manage to sell for a high price. It seemed like every time Eric dipped his hand into the safe, he found another stunning piece of treasure…
This Pristine Coin
While some of the more fragile objects in his grandparents’ safe had been damaged over time, other sturdier objects had stood the test of time. Take this large coin, for example, which had remained in remarkably top condition over the years. Of course, the fact that it was in a protective case had a huge part to play in its longevity. Sure, some weathering has occurred, but that’s understandable. Despite this though, the discoveries kept on coming for Eric…
At the very bottom of the safe, there was a box that for one reason or another, Eric struggled to open up and see what was inside. We speculated that maybe it was just a toolbox that he didn’t feel was noteworthy enough. At any rate, he had finally reached the bottom of the safe. Then, after a lot of hard work and persistence, Eric managed to open up the box and found some items that truly pulled at the heartstrings…
His Grandma’s Jewlery
While many of the valuables that Eric discovered had a lot of historical significance and value, there is no denying that the following discovery had plenty of sentimental value. As he opened up one of those mysterious boxes, it was clear to Eric that he had found some of his grandmother’s jewelry. Naturally, he got very emotional holding the very same jewelry that his late grandmother had worn many decades ago. While this would have been enough, there was still one more thing…
Mysterious Coffee Table
After finally retrieving all of the valuables out of the hidden safe, Eric knew that he needed to search the entire house to ensure that he left no stone unturned. Surely enough, after looking at every nook and carry in the farmhouse, he noticed an unsuspecting-looking coffee table. At first, he was certain that it was nothing more than an old piece of furniture that was rotting away. Then, as he opened one of the drawers, he found something else…
Eric couldn’t believe that inside this perfectly normal-looking coffee table, there was yet another safe waiting to be opened. It was proving to be one of the most serendipitous weeks of his life! Not only did his grandparents keep some incredible treasures locked away, but they also had some hiding in plain sight! While they were kicking back, watching TV, there was another safe just inches away. This begs the question though: what exactly had they kept inside this second safe?
It turns out that the second safe contained a couple of things that had been hinted at earlier on in the article. While we won’t spell it out for you, put it this way: you wouldn’t want to pull the trigger on these if they were loaded. As previously mentioned, Eric’s grandfather was a fan of these, so it shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise that he found a couple of these. And that wasn’t even the most exciting discovery from this list…
Barr Notes = Jackpot!
After finding those valuable coins in the first safe, Eric was taken aback once again when he came across these dollar bills that had Joseph Barr’s signature on them. Barr was the Secretary of the Treasury for just a month in 1968, which meant that not many of these notes were ever produced. As a result of this incredible find, this means that whatever Eric’s discoveries were originally worth, this was about to increase considerably. All he needed to do now was get some answers…
Sharing His Story With the World
Eric was now at a point where he felt like he was on to something huge. At this stage in the story, he was ready to share his findings with the outside world. Proud of his discoveries, he took photos of everything and posted them on popular online forum Reddit. Not only did he proudly show off his grandparents’ valuables, but he also asked if anyone knew what they were and more importantly, what they were worth…
Reddit to the Rescue
Ultimately, Eric wasn’t able to get too much information from the online community about his recently found valuables. Although people weren’t able to identify what the book and the coins were exactly, one person did mention that in some cases, the Bureau of Engraving and Printing would be able to replace damaged bills. He would simply have to go there in order to find out what he could get replaced.
How Much Was it All Worth?
It made perfect sense that Eric would be curious to find out how much the contents of his grandparents’ safe would be worth. He knew that he was standing over some sort of goldmine. At the end of the day though, he needed an exact figure. Although it took a while to find out its exact value, Eric suspected that it was tens of thousands of bucks. “Anything from 1964 or older is 90% silver worth about 20 times face value of the coin,” he said.
One commenter on Reddit was determined to help Eric work out exactly how much his coins were worth. According to the person in question, who also happens to collect coins, there is something important that distinguishes coins found in safes from those that are not. Safe coins apparently have collector value, which is just as important as face value, when it comes to numismatics. “Notes are often collectible as well, check everything, even if damaged they can still have great value,” they wrote.
Many Eyes and Colors
We looked at a portrait of Audrey Hepburn earlier that left our heads spinning. This portrait tattoo may take the cake as far as trippy and eye-catching designs, though.
Like the previous portrait, this tattoo uses the trick of three pairs of eyes. However, it boosts the effect of the use of other techniques. This includes a variety of bright colors, the top of the head fading into birds, and the use of different stylistic techniques. We almost didn’t notice the skull on her forehead!
Needs New Batteries
Most of the time, batteries can prove to be a nuisance. After all, who wants to worry about a remote or device dying right when you need it most?
As far as tattoos go, on the other hand, this makes for a great conversation starter. The tattoo itself, like so many others that have mesmerized us, is well-done and, on the right medium, might trick us into thinking they were real. In this case, we’re wondering if there’s something more electronic to this person than meets the eye.
An Optical Illusion
There’s nothing that mesmerizes us like tattoos that double as optical illusions. After all, they’re made to trick our eyes and be eye-catching overall.
This person’s upper sleeve is a spiral optical illusion that leaves us staring. It looks almost as if you could reach right into their arm! This tattoo uses a few different aspects to accomplish this effect. The tattoo artist obviously takes a lot of time on the linework and shading of their tattoos with amazing results.
While it isn’t for everyone, hyperrealistic tattoos are a shocking addition to anyone’s body art. However, you have to find a talented artist if this is what you’re going for because it’s difficult to create.
The tattoos that adorn this person’s back look like we could walk right in and look around! The detail in the tattoo is really what pulls it all together. Of course, the tattoo of the man alone is impressive but the scene is brought to life by the background.
Wrapped in Leaves
So far, we’ve looked at tattoos that are bold and immediately eye-catching. That doesn’t mean that there aren’t options for a more delicate touch that still mesmerizes us with its artistry.
This tattoo artist managed to give this person a delicate piece that we can’t take our eyes off of. The vine wraps around their leg but doesn’t completely cover it. It’s a nice balance for delicate tattoos like this one to dray on the mesmerizing beauty of nature.
The Places You’ll Go
There are plenty of travel tattoos out there. There are a countless number of ways that you can share your passion for travel through the art someone puts on your skin.
This person went with an absolutely stunning option. Rather than just getting a map or compass tattooed on, they opted for an optical illusion. The compass is tattooed on their skin which appears to be ripping away to show a map underneath. This takes a lot of talent to create!
Minimalism and Frida Kahlo
Tattoos are an art form. As such, they may take inspiration from other artists, even if that artist’s medium was entirely different. There’s nothing quite as inspiring as a successful artist, after all.
This person decided they would pay homage to one of the most famous artists with an appearance that everyone would recognize: Frida Kahlo. However, they decided to use a minimalistic approach and only use the top half of her face. Still, she’s instantly recognizable and unmistakable.
Simple Lines, Big Concept
Minimalism tattoos are a subtle choice that has achieved steadily increasing popularity over the last few years. There have been some genuinely interesting tattoos to come out of it too.
This tattoo is one of the best examples of this. In any other style, a map of the world would probably be an instantly noticeable tattoo from any angle. This style manages to create a mesmerizing simplicity that leaves viewers studying it a little more closely.
Layers to It
There are tattoos that we marvel at for their simplicity but there are detailed tattoos that take our breath away for the opposite reason. Creating something realistic presents an interesting challenge.
This tattoo incorporates a number of different features from realistic portrait features, scripts, and a bit of an optical illusion. The end result is a tattoo that we could stare at for hours and continue to notice new aspects of it. In all, we’re impressed with this artist’s execution!
As we stated before, there’s a certain powerful artistic use of nature in tattoos. There is plenty of inspiration to take from the natural world around us that helps to create gorgeous tattoos.
This person’s tattoo is impressive, to say the least. While the tattoo isn’t huge or flashy, it still catches the eye and serves as a beautiful focal point. The most mesmerizing thing about this tattoo isn’t just the detail on the deer’s face but the burst of color of the flowers in the antlers as well.
There’s a Snake in My…Arm
There are certain tattoos that don’t mesmerize us for their beauty. Instead, they draw us in and keep us looking at them in wonder, even if they do make us a little uncomfortable.
This tattoo is a perfect example of a tattoo that’s shocking but mesmerizing at the same time. The snake in the tattoo seems like it comes in and out of this person’s skin and it looks pretty realistic. In fact, it looks realistic enough to give the whole tattoo a three-dimensional appearance.
This tattoo is so eye-catching that you almost have to wonder if it’s real at first. Well, it definitely is! It does a great job of showing off the amazing feats that tattoos can be formed into.
This person’s leg tattoo surely catches people’s eyes when they see it. Instead of skin, it looks more like a piece of artistically carved wood instead. It’s shocking to see exactly how good this illusion looks. We have to commend the tattoo artist on a job well done.
When we think of tattoos, most people immediately think of sleeves, leg pieces, or even a back or chest tattoo. Yet, different placements can make a huge difference as to what you can do.
This tattoo artist and their patron came up with a unique and impressive way to showcase a floral piece. They cleverly had the tattoo wrap around their ear. The leaves delicately wrap around the cartilage of their ear and the flowers take the lobe rather than an earring.
The Cheshire Inside
Once again, the most eye-catching tattoos aren’t always the ones that everyone finds beautiful or elegant. Oftentimes, more horror-themed tattoos use interesting techniques.
Oddly enough, this tattoo is based on Alice in Wonderland, which many people associate with Disney. That’s one reason this tattoo of the Cheshire Cat is so showstopping. It uses careful shading and artistry to look like a peek inside this person as well as subverting the Disney style often associated with the character.
Largescale Geometric Tattoos
Geometric tattoos are amazing given the simplicity of the core concept. The idea is to use geometric shapes to create a larger design that will blow someone away.
One of the best things about using geometric shapes is that it’s a great way to portray depth. That’s why this person’s tattoo is so mesmerizing – you can easily see the way it seems like you could reach into it. The concept is only elevated by the selective use of color vs. black and gray.
Heads in the Woods
This tattoo is also impressive in how it uses both black and gray and vibrant colors to create a beautiful contrast. On top of that, it also just shows off the tattoo artist’s serious talent.
The tattoo has two layers that seamlessly fade into one another including the woman’s face and the scene from a forest path. It blends the two rather opposite themes together in a way that leaves us staring at this image for a while.
Caught in Smoke
Just like with the last tattoo, this tattoo benefits from capturing a difficult technique. After all, how does someone create a still image of something that doesn’t have definite lines?
This tattoo artist surely knows the answer since they created a tattoo like this. Not only is the smoke beautifully recreated here, but the borders of the tattoo also look smoky as well which fits the design better than a hard, strict border might. On top of that, let’s not forget the perfect apple.
A Beautiful Memory
The birth of a child is a momentous occasion in a parent’s life. That means that it only makes sense that some parents would want to mark down the memory on themselves in a tattoo.
This particular tattoo is simple and small but the meaning is huge and obvious. It uses simple lines rather than careful shading to capture a scene of a mother holding and kissing her newborn. To pull the whole design together, the date is added in a corresponding font.
At this point, we’ve seen a lot of tattoos that rely on illusion. There are plenty more to come too since this is always a mesmerizing method to demonstrate something.
As for this tattoo, it uses a lace-up corset design to get started. The “skin” on their back is corsetted loosely together, showing a mechanical design underneath. In addition to that, this tattoo showcases a balance of the mechanical and natural by adding flowers to the borders.
Watercolor tattoos have become increasingly popular over the years. As the name suggests, these tattoos are supposed to have the same appearance as a beautiful watercolor painting.
These tattoos can sometimes take on the appearance of a subject. We have to say, though, this watercolor tattoo just showcases the colors and effects that watercolor has. The tattoo is large too, taking up the person’s forearm. This leaves plenty of room for broad “brushstroke,” giving the artist plenty of room to show off.
Pen in Place
Speaking of double-takes, we’d probably ask this person if we could borrow their pen before we noticed the truth. That’s no pen at all – it’s just another example of realistic tattoos!
We have to wonder what prompted this person to get a pen tattooed on their head. No matter why, the end result nearly leaves us speechless. This is thanks to more than just how realistic the pen is. It’s enhanced by supporting details such as giving the tattoo a believable shadow on their head.
Finding Your Inner Disney Princess
If you’re a Disney fan, you’ve probably seen a fair share of Disney-themed tattoos. Of course, this encompasses a range of tattoos both good and bad.
This person received a small but stunning tattoo based on the Disney film Mulan. This tattoo manages to take a rather detailed outfit from the movie and boil it down to a minimalistic design. Even better, it does this without losing the integrity of the tattoo or how instantly recognizable the subject of the tattoo is.
Tattoos for Two
What could possibly be better than a single tattoo that takes a viewer’s breath away? How about a set of tattoos for two people who love each other deeply?
This pair chose a design that relies primarily on solid black. When he puts his arm around her shoulder, the two tattoos make up a beautiful and large flower circular design. Yet, the independent tattoos aren’t so reliant on the other half of the design that they look wrong when they aren’t in this pose.
Just a Touch
Hand tattoos have a lot of potential but are generally thought of for people who already have a lot of tattoos. There’s nothing saying that hand tattoos can’t stand alone, though.
This person decided that a hand tattoo was just what they needed. The result was much more delicate than many people might expect. The tattoo is only made all the more impressive by the small, precise dot work in the design in addition to the even line work.
Audrey Hepburn Like You’ve Never Seen
When it comes to portrait tattoos, there are some figures that you see more than others. For instance, Marilyn Monroe and Audrey Hepburn have decorated countless tattoos.
That’s why when this person wanted to make sure that their Audrey Hepburn tattoo stood out from the rest. We have to say, they definitely accomplished this and caught our attention. This definitely looks like the actress like we’ve never seen her before. At least, we don’t remember her having six eyes.
Among the Trees
As we’ve stated before, there’s a lot of inspiration to be found in nature. That’s why there are so many tattoos that use the beauty of nature to nail down the design that the recipient wants.
This person also got a forest scene but, if you look closely, you’ll notice it isn’t a solid shadow. For one, the use of black and gray together gives the tattoo depth it would otherwise be missing. Additionally, the tattoo uses dot work along with solid coloring.
The Missing Piece
In this tattoo, the artist relied on shading to help give the tattoo the three-dimensional effect they wanted. Yet, they didn’t stop there either, giving this tattoo a multi-layered concept.
Actually, it’s quite literally multi-layered, as far as tattoos go. Close to the style of the battery tattoo, this tattoo starts by creating a missing piece from the skin, this time shifting the piece over slightly. To add to this concept, though, there are scales showing underneath. A merperson perhaps?
Coordinating tattoos have a tendency to go wrong. That’s why it’s so impressive when you see ones that work so well together and look gorgeous independently.
These tattoos are beautiful together and as individual tattoos. Each of them serves as a pastel sea turtle, mixing hard lines with the techniques of a watercolor tattoo. While these tattoos don’t combine into a bigger, singular picture, they nearly match in design as well, despite facing in different directions.
Behind the Mask
Heavily tattooed people often have designs that meld into one another. For instance, sleeves often flow into the artwork that people tattoo on their hands or shoulders.
This person decided that they were happy with a bit of separation in design. This time, the tattoos on their hands actually match their face. Now, when they cover their face, they have a mask ready! We wonder what this tattoo looks like when their hands are down.
Framed for Viewing
The borders of tattoos are often one of the aspects of a tattoo design that can be hard to decide on. This is especially true when it comes to showing off scenes rather than definite images.
This tattoo artist and the person being tattooed came up with an excellent solution. Instead of letting the tattoo fade out or framing the scene with a natural element like trees, the artist created a beautiful gold frame for the tattoo, giving it an almost ethereal look.
The Writing Underneath
We’ve looked at a lot of optical illusions that push the limit of what you might think tattoos can do. This tattoo blows us away with the attention to detail and the illusion the artist accomplished.
At first glance, you might even think that there was something under this man’s skin. As it turns out, it’s just the writing of the tattoo, enhanced by the optical illusion effect. Not only does this show a touch of realism in the “skin,” but in the shading on the written portion as well.
A Talented Portrait Artist
Portraits, by their nature, are difficult tattoos to create. This is especially true the closer you get to a more realistic style, where a multitude of mistakes can make for an unrecognizable tattoo.
That’s why we’re so impressed when we see portrait tattoos that look like this one. This tattoo does more than just create a realistic face too. The wardrobe that the subject of the portrait is wearing is fairly detailed too and this artist didn’t miss a beat!
A Little 3D
There’s been a lot of discussion about how well-done good three-dimensional tattoos have looked so far. There are plenty of different ways that this can work out too!
This person may not have gotten a traditional approach to a three-dimensional snake but it definitely caught our attention! Instead, the design relies on a blue and red layered design reminiscent of watching a 3D movie without the proper glasses. The end result is absolutely eye-catching and unique.
Look at These Muscles
For the average person, this tattoo might seem like a bit much. However, for someone interested in anatomy and the human body, this tattoo is picture-perfect.
Either way, though, you have to appreciate this artist’s eye for detail. Creating a full sleeve is hard enough but creating an anatomically accurate recreation of muscle over an arm is even harder. I guess this person will never forget what’s underneath their skin since they have a handy reference!
Working with Lines
This tattoo artist is actually well-known for her style as shown in this tattoo. Her name is Lisa Orth, based in Los Angeles at Alleged Arts, and she’s well-known for her linework.
We can see why too! This tattoo leaves us mesmerized with its linework but with such careful detailing that you don’t notice it isn’t shaded right away. The end result is a precise tattoo of flowers and branches with the same charm as a skillful sketch.
There’s a lot that goes into making a tattoo not only look great but last as well. There are some tattoos that don’t seem like they leave a lot of creative room, though, like a black ink sleeve.
As this tattoo artist shows us, there’s more to black ink than meets the eye. Instead of offering a standard sleeve in black, they went the extra mile to create this multi-dimensional tattoo that still relies mostly on black ink.
Look at That Detail!
This tattoo probably couldn’t be more different from the finger tattoo we looked at. Instead of a design made to be subtle, this tattoo demands a viewer’s attention and it deserves it.
Reaching from this person’s waist up over their entire ribcage, there was plenty of room to set the scene. There’s so much going on in this tattoo too! While the shark demands a lot of attention, there seems to be a naval battle going on as well.
Heavily relying on one color is a technique that artists of all mediums do, from tattoos to photography. This tattoo artist decided this tattoo would look better in blue and we have to agree!
The choice of blue is fitting as well. Since the shark is present, the blue tones solidify the ocean theme. It also helps to blend together the different elements of the tattoo that might otherwise seem unrelated. For instance, the shark and the portrait work better together with a tying hue.
If we saw this person without knowing what we were looking at, their tattoo would surely startle us. Yet, that seems like the purpose here: tattoos that make us do a double-take.
The concept behind the tattoo is simple. Boiled down, it’s just a line of buttons as if they were wearing a button-up shirt. What really makes this tattoo stand out from the rest is how well-done and realistic it is. Once again, we have to give the artist a hand for some great shading.
Simple but Artistic
We’ve mentioned geometric tattoos already but they’re usually defined by sharp, clear lines. This tattoo may not fit that bill exactly but it’s still a well-done piece of art that leaves us in awe.
The artist could have gone for a lion in a thousand different styles but chose one that really captured our attention. The lion is made up of sections of largely unblended colors. This gives it a slightly softened but still mesmerizing tattoo.
The Clover Effect
Don’t you just love those illusions that play such a wild trick on your eyes that you feel like what you’re looking at is moving? This tattoo is a perfect example of that. We don’t know about you, but we feel like these shapes are vibrating a little bit.
We imagine it would have the same effect it was just a bunch of circles surrounding each other. But because they resemble some sort of rare clover, we simply had to put it on this list.
You Know the Drill
OK, so it’s not a drill. It is actually part of a suspension system for a car. But still, it’s pretty neat and perfectly works as a leg tattoo. We guess this guy is a fan of automobiles.
Heck, maybe he’s a talented runner and likes to compare himself to one of those cars from the Fast and the Furious film franchise. Either that or he simply thought this concept looked cool and wanted it on his skin.
I’ll Be Back
Have you ever seen the film Terminator 2: Judgment Day? It is already established that the main character is a robot sent from the future to save John Connor’s life. But it’s only when the T-800 rips off his arm’s skin to reveal the cybernetic machinery beneath that takes the movie to a whole new level of awesomeness.
This tattoo really sends out similar vibes – that there is some sort of machine lurking beneath the surface.
A Well Oiled Machine
Speaking of machines, here is another example of a tattoo that makes it look like the person in question is simply a robot who is masquerading as a human being. We really appreciate the attention to detail that went into producing this tattoo.
While it creates the illusion that there are a bunch of gnarly holes on this person’s back, the sight of the mechanical spine and the many wheels and bolts is truly a sight to behold.
The Way of the Samurai
This might not be the most mesmerizing tattoo on this list, but it is still pretty cool to look at nonetheless. We love it when a silhouette still manages to tell a story and this can certainly be said about the following tattoo.
It clearly depicts a samurai who is in some sort of meditative stance. The rest of the tattoo simply adds to the hypnotic quality of the scene. The robe, sword and hairstyle are clear indications that this guy means business.
Guitar O’ Clock
Some people love music more than others – so much so that they would even happily get a tattoo of their favorite band or a set of memorable song lyrics. This guy seemed to take things to another level though in the music department.
It seems that he is very much into playing guitar. He wanted to show the world just how passionate he was as an axman, he got the tattoo that made it look like the top of a guitar is embedded into his skin.
Marked By the Beast
Anyone who has a cat probably knows how annoying it can be to be clawed left, right and center virtually every day. Our cats don’t mean anything by it, they just like to dig their claws into us from time to time. And there are times when they scratch just a bit too hard.
This seemed to be the inspiration for the following tattoo. Except, it looks like the scratch marks are the result of a human hand, not the paw of a feline.
The Neverending Tattoo
Some illusions are trippier than others and this one is certainly up there with the very best. We’d say that the beauty here is in the tattoo’s simplicity. Yet, when you focus on it, it is virtually impossible to judge where the circle begins and where it ends.
And that’s the point of the illusion. One thing is for sure, we can imagine this tat being a true conversation starter at any bar.
Lo and behold, here is another example of a tattoo that is reminiscent of that ghastly scene from Terminator 2: Judgment Day. This time though, we would say it looks even more like that moment went T-800 exposed his real arm to prove to the creator of Skynet that he wasn’t lying.
Imagine if a robot came along to warn you of the future with this kind of imagery. That’s what makes this tattoo so harrowing – the story behind it.
Love Is the Magic Word
There is no denying that virtuous words being tattooed on us can be kind of tacky, depending on how they are done. But we don’t think that the following tattoo qualifies. In fact, we are kind of digging it.
This is because of the way that the words are hiding in the background beneath this star which appears to be etched into the person’s skin. The fact that the word “love” is the only word in red coloring also speaks volumes about the tat.
Let Them Out!
Once more, the tattoos that catch our eyes are often ones that leave us feeling a little uncomfortable. To an extent, this shows how much care and talent went into creating the tattoo.
This person wanted a scene that most of us don’t want to think about: an alien underneath their skin. What really makes this tattoo so impressive is that it isn’t a piece of art with clean lines. It relies solely on shading to make sure that this tattoo looks as easily recognizable as it does.
The Shading Alone
Realistic tattoos in black and gray are difficult to accomplish. On the other hand, full color realistic tattoos present a unique challenge to tattoo artists as well.
This person decided that the perfect addition was a skull looming over a candle. With this artwork, we have to say they made the right choice! Not only is the piece recognizable, it looks almost photo realistic. The artist did a fantastic job at catching everything from the smoke to the shading in candlelight.
A Perfect Spiral
Spiraling tattoos are sometimes optical illusions but they sometimes just seem to hypnotize the viewer for a while. It’s something about the appeal of the symmetry and the detailed work.
This tattoo features an especially interesting design. The optical illusion draws you in and leaves you looking closer at this tattoo. That’s when you’ll notice that these aren’t solid lines. They’re made up of smaller dots, giving the tattoo a more detailed appearance. We have to admire the hard work that went into this art piece.
To the Mountaintop
If you aren’t careful, a tattoo of a mountain peak could look like countless others. Yet, there are ways to make even such a popular idea look unique with the help of the right artist.
This tattoo artist and their patron took a careful look at a mountain and minimalism. The tattoo is largely made up of lines and dots rather than detailed shading and hues. Plus, with the placement on the back of the calf, the line straight down creates some beautiful symmetry.
Tattooed in Marble
The statues of the Renaissance are gorgeous sights that people still flock to see. So, if you find an artist as great as this one, why not turn to tattoos of these beautiful masterpieces?
This person’s tattoos showcase the beauty of both tattooing and sculpture. There are multiple Renaissance-style statues tattooed into this person’s skin including all their details. You can see that the tattoo artist took the time to carefully and artistically capture the waves, folds in fabric, and everything other detail necessary.