Drum tattoo meaning is very personal, it depends on each individual person.
However, most people associate them with various rituals or rites of passage. Native Americans are the most likely to have drum tattoos with a predetermined meaning.
What do drum tattoos symbolize? Drum tattoos symbolize communication, unity and storytelling. These three things are the basis of all ritualistic ceremonies that Native Americans partake in. The beating of a drum signifies the heartbeat of Mother Earth, as well as calling upon their ancestors. They often use drums to help them find spiritual guidance.
Some Native American tribes use specific types of drums during their ceremonies. Such as the Bison drum, this type is only to be used when certain rituals are taking place.
- The black drum is also very unique and can only be used in one particular situation. The death rites of a chief or medicine man will require the use of the black drum.
- The turtle drum is used for healing and calling upon spirits to help those that are sick or afflicted. These drums all have a unique sound and some tribes will use more than one type of drum during their ceremonies.
The dark circles on the surface of the drum aren’t just there as an artistic expression, they represent Mother Earth’s eyes. She is always watching what we do and it’s a way to say that she sees everything.
Many tribes have special songs that they sing while using drums of all shapes and sizes. So if you chose a drum tattoo, make sure you know the significance of each symbol on your design before getting it inked on your body.
These drums were mainly used by women and children during prayers for healthy crops or hunting seasons. The day of the dead is often celebrated with these drums too, using them to speak with their ancestors. Smaller drums are often used by children to communicate with their ancestors at the age of puberty.
Drum tattoo designs and ideas
The most popular designs are tribal drums with small shapes and patterns inside. Native Americans would often incorporate the animals that they use for hunting or farming too.
Drum tattoos can also be done completely free hand, symbolizing the beat of a drum itself. Other times, they will be drawn to mimic a real drum and either leave blank space for the skin to show through, or add in a background.
Drum tattoos are usually done in blackwork, but can also be rendered in color too. Some people will choose bright vibrant colors to make it stand out a bit more and others prefer a darker look, which tends to blend in with your skin tone better.
The reason a drum tattoo is so personal, is because it will be in a place where you can see it every day. So make sure to take your time with your design and find one that really suits your personality.
People have been going for drum tattoos for centuries now, making these designs timeless. You can also add in tribal elements or even floral designs with the drums to make them look even better. There are plenty of ways to be creative when inking these tattoos too, so take your time and find the perfect design for yourself.
If you’re looking for more drum tattoo ideas or don’t know where to start, then check out this gallery of amazing designs below. A lot of this stuff is free hand and absolutely incredible! Drum tattoos aren’t just for men either, plenty of women get them too. Some love the idea of a heart beat pulsing through their skin while others show off how strong they are by getting an entire tribal drum design on their back, thigh or shoulder blade.