If you prefer smaller tattoos over larger pieces, the back can easily hold a dozen separate tattoos, assuming they are sized appropriately to fit together. You can link each individual tattoo together or simply fill the gaps with even smaller designs.
You can also break up the back into quadrants, with each quadrant containing a different tattoo theme, each symbolizing something different. In case you’re not familiar with quadrants, the areas that represent each quadrant are as follows: upper-right (quadrant 1), upper-left (quadrant 2), lower-left (quadrant 3), and lower-right (quadrant 4).
Brainstorming or getting inspiration for a single, sprawling tattoo piece that covers the entire back is definitely more difficult. Not only do you need to come up with a design that looks really awesome, you also need to accept the fact that whatever design you go with can never be covered-up. So it needs to be perfect, one that won’t produce a single drop of regret. A tattoo artist can fix a few mistakes on a full-back tattoo. But if the mistake is the entire piece, nothing can be done other than laser removal.
The best thing about back tattoos is that you have lots of options when it comes to designs. Almost anything and everything works great. You don’t have to worry about curves distorting the design, which is a common issue with bicep tattoos or lower leg tattoos. You can treat the back as a real painting canvas and come up with designs accordingly.
You can go with a full-fledged Japanese tattoo with a geisha, a koi, or a samurai as the centerpiece, complemented with cherry blossoms, water waves, Japanese-style clouds, or lotuses. There are lots of artists who specialize in Japanese tattoos, so no need to actually fly to Japan. Unless you want to experience getting a traditional Japanese tattoo through “Irezumi,” an ancient style more painful than modern tattooing methods.
If you are the religious type, you can opt for a theme centered on crosses, angels, archangels, and maybe a Bible verse or two. The best part is that you can keep it hidden from prying eyes, especially if you live in a conservative place where people look at tattoos with disgust.
If you’re going for different tattoos designs and themes instead of a single piece, we recommend that you go for a single coloring scheme. A mix of colored tattoos and black-and-gray tattoos on a single canvas isn’t exactly a picture of harmony, so it would be best to simply choose one of the two. But if you can come up with designs that work well together regardless of coloring style, feel free to have them.
For more ideas on back tattoos for men, check out these amazing tatto designs we compiled. These examples will show you the back’s full potential as a tattoo canvas.