Header image courtesy of @moonchild.mirmanda (via Instagram)
Originally published by Sarah Moran. Last updated by Grace Chong.
Whether you’re itching to get another tattoo, or you just want to dream about the potential of maybe, possibly, one day getting body art, we’re here to help. Hong Kong is stocked with an array of talented tattoo artists, and with just the scroll of your thumb, you can pick up some inspiration for your next tattoo piece on these Hong Kong-based tattoo artists’ Instagram accounts.
Nathalie’s work often centres around geometric patterns, symbols, and natural elements, and her Instagram is filled with beautiful ink designs. Think tree roots, dark holes, solar systems, and everything beyond the horizon. Her alluring designs are etched with black ink and the occasional pop of red and orange tones. If you like minimalistic dark themes, Nathalie is your girl.
Minimalism is dominating mainstream tattoo designs these days, and if you are a fan of celebrity minimalistic tattooists like Dr Woo, Bang Bang NYC, and JonBoy, you have to give Mirmanda’s Instagram a follow. Her mesmerising brand of sharp, clean lines peppered with surrealism, as well as attention to detail, is pretty darn staggering.
Magaga specialises in delicate lines and ink that seems to float right above the flesh. Her Instagram is filled with plenty of minimalistic linework and sketchy designs such as the one above. Her designs are primarily black ink linework, but she also adds bold washes of colour if the designs call for it. What’s more, Magaga’s work is more than just pretty—each piece is specially designed and holds a deep meaning and personal story for her clients.
If you haven’t tried hand poke tattoos yet, Hand Poke Tree’s Instagram photos will likely persuade you to do so. With daily flash sale designs available, the designs are cute, minimalistic, and colourful. Perfect for those who need a reminder to stay youthful and fun, the designs range from childhood favourites like the Teletubbies to colourful flowers and retro-style unicorns.
Harrison from BitterSweetly Tattoo and his designs bring a sense of familiarity and nostalgia to a childhood of cartoons and comics. His designs play with geometric shapes to create bright, colour pop block characters and designs but skipping out on the more minute details for clean and simple lines. Truly, a perfect option if you’re looking for a quick flash that draws the eye.
Sk. Ink Tattoo hosts a talented panel of tattoo artists and apprentices, with a range of design specialities. In-house female tattoo artist Mary focuses primarily on illustrative renditions of animals, from beloved pets to whimsical designs of wild animals and floral patterns. A quick peep at her Instagram portfolio shows a broad range of colours, detailing, and distinctive designs.
Cute Korean-style watercolour tattoos are trending in Hong Kong these days, and if that’s what you’re into, Mini Lau is one of the best in Hong Kong. Lau has mastered the difficult balance of faint, almost whimsical tattoos and intricate detailing. Her dainty pieces are loaded with soft colours, fine lines, and realism. Whether you want classic flowers on your collarbone, or an Iron Man blasting through your arm, Lau does it all—just check out her Instagram to see what catches your fancy.
New York- and Hong Kong-based tattoo artist Elizabeth Gaus specialises in abstract watercolour pieces as well as playful brushstroke tattoos. As the founder of White Walls Tattoo Studio in Tai Kok Tsui, she often incorporates her own style into animal illustrations. From minimalistic, abstract creations to mystical colour drawings, or even Chinese calligraphy pieces, you’ll find a wide range of tattoos on Elizabeth’s Instagram.
Rich Phipson is not only just a mainstay of one of Hong Kong’s coolest tattoo parlours, but he’s also a pro at creating playful designs with bold black lines you literally won’t find anywhere else in town. His work regularly features fierce animals or ancient gods, like the tattoo of Odin shown on the picture above. See more geometric masterpieces on his Instagram.
Minimalism has long been a trendy design style, favoured by younger folks and artists alike. Cynthia’s whimsical style combines simple linework with Japanese-inspired designs. Much of her flash tattoo work, which you can see on her Instagram page, is a cross-over between cartoon and anime-style art. Often, her designs feature otherworldly creatures and cats, which is no surprise, seeing as how her designer profile explicitly mentions her cute cat!
If you’re looking to tattoo a realistic picture of someone close to your heart, Zac Wong, owner of Zink Tattoo in Tsim Sha Tsui, can help. With over 10 years of experience running his own studio and winning first place in the realism category at Macau’s Tattoo Convention in 2019, you’re in safe hands with Wong. From intricate tattoos of the lion dance to a portrait of your beloved pet and family members, his expert shading skills brings ink to life. Check out his Instagram and prepare to be wowed.
Owner of Soul Canvas Ink in Sheung Wan, Kin Liu has over 13 years of experience under his belt as a tattoo artist in Hong Kong. Known for his lifelike black-and-white human portrait tattoos, you’ll find tattoos of everything, from baby portraits to female angel warriors and even famous K-pop stars! His Instagram is filled with hundreds of his past pieces, making for easy browsing.
Internationally experienced tattoo artist Wang Pang established Friday’s Tattoo with the hope of creating a relaxing space with a groovy vibe to encourage patrons to let go of the stress of new ink. His mastery of various styles means clients have a lot of creative freedom in what they can leave the store with, from realistic tributes to a loved one to Chinese brush art. If you are still on the fence about your preferred tattoo style and would like a diverse range, check out his Instagram for inspiration.
Yin is a self-described “black and grey tattooist” and specialises in realistic designs and ink pieces. He operates out of The Rabbit Cave, which doubles as an art gallery and tattoo parlour. You will not find cute, minimalistic flash tattoos here, but you are guaranteed that your design will be an incredible statement piece! Check out his Instagram for more photos.
Argon’s mysterious and dark Instagram feed of his traditional Chinese calligraphy tattoos shows off his expertise on the subject. For those who want a modern edge to their tattoo, consider adding in a touch of colour or spacing out the Chinese characters to make the word less obvious and give the artwork an abstract appearance. One of our favourites includes the Chinese character of the word “heart” (pictured above). While it’s one of his simpler tattoos, Argon shows off the aesthetics of the Chinese ink by imitating the natural brushstrokes made by a Chinese calligraphy brush. He also frequently posts calligraphy work that he’s done on paper, for those who love following stylish typography.
While he may not have the most aesthetic feed, Jimmy Ho is a tattoo legend in Hong Kong. Ho’s 40-year-long career has seen him ink countless gangsters, overseas soldiers, and film stars from all around the world. Even now in his sixties, Ho remains one of the coolest and most forward-thinking tattooists in Hong Kong. The tattoo legend’s Instagram page is littered with his traditional Chinese and Japanese pattern tattoo work, as well as throwback photos from the past, giving us a glimpse into Hong Kong’s tattoo culture through the ages.
In a city where architecture incorporates Hong Kong’s nature parks and mountains with skyscrapers and highways, floral and fauna designs are popular themes in tattoos these days. Crona, the female artist at White Night Tattoo Studio, specialises in just that—intricate designs that incorporate flowers, animals, and abstract art. Her Instagram is full of stunningly intricate designs and will have you aching for a beautiful floral piece for your own body!
Going by his professional tattoo artist name, lhkiosk creates fantastical designs for his clients based on the belief that tattoos are meant to tell a story, be it to reflect a fond memory, to put down a painful past, or simply to evoke a feeling difficult to put into words. To reflect the individuality of stories, lhkiosk also has a flash tattoo series of unlikely mash-up combinations that are perfect for those looking for a unique ink, but may not be certain of what they are looking for. His Instagram is filled with beautifully detailed illustrations, and a lot of them are of animals and pets, too!
“People often ask me about the meaning of my work, but it is really hard to explain with words. It is some kind of connection with the world, with people,” asserts Vencis Lam, who specialises in tribal tattoos and black and white minimalism. Through her intricate designs, this artist seeks inspiration around her, be it in conversations, art history, architecture, or nature. Her designs are created to reflect the energy of each client, and to imitate the different shapes and parts of the body. Some of her work on Instagram might surprise you, and convince you that less really can be more when it comes to tattoos!