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Submitted on
April 17, 2008
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689 KB


110,680 (8 today)
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Sony Ericsson
Shutter Speed
1/25 second
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Date Taken
Apr 16, 2008, 9:25:54 PM


Creative Commons License
Some rights reserved. This work is licensed under a
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Enso circle tattoo by wunschpunsch Enso circle tattoo by wunschpunsch
My new (and first) tattoo. I got it done by Denis at the Aloha Tattoo Studio in Karlsruhe, South Germany. See [link] for more info on the studio and the artists.

It's an incomplete circle, inked in the likeliness of a brush drawing. These brush circles are called "Ensô" ( 円相 ) in japanese and are one of the central symbols of Zen. The english wikipedia article on the ensô describes it's symbolism pretty well:

"Ensō is perhaps the most common subject of Japanese calligraphy, symbolizing enlightenment, strength, elegance, the universe, and the void; it is also an "expression of the moment" and thus is often considered a form of expressionist art."

See the wikipedia article for more infos about the ensô circle as a zen symbol.

I chose the ensô not only because of it's symbolism, but also because I consider the imperfect look of asian brush drawings and calligraphy very aesthetically pleasing. A friend of mine remarked that the tattoo reminded him of the endless serpent that bites it's own tail (remember Ouroboros?).

I'd like to hear your thoughts on both the ensô and the tattoo :) (... and don't feel shy to produce actual criticism; I consider myself mature enough not to take it personally and retreat into my room's corner, crying while hugging my knees ...)

The ensô design itself is a redrawn, modified version of an ensô brush drawing I found on the web - I don't have the URL anymore, but a simple google search should yield enough similar pictures.
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Xx-Cake-xX Featured By Owner Feb 4, 2014  Hobbyist General Artist
I have a metal sheet piece that's got painted graffiti circles like this. <3
NightmarePain Featured By Owner Jun 12, 2013  Student Traditional Artist
The tattoo is simple yet beautiful, the decision to keep the natural look of an actual brush instead of just an incomplete circle makes it that much more pleasing to look at. It also helps and becomes even more pleasing to the eye when you say why you got it. The symbolism is wonderful and it keeps the tattoo alive when it has meaning behind it. All in all an awesome yet simple tattoo
N4r0 Featured By Owner Dec 21, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
awesome *.*
Kyubbigirl Featured By Owner Oct 24, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
It's also how you do bloom in the game called Okami, very nice work~
haakon95 Featured By Owner Oct 3, 2012
can u tell me what the tattoo means, i cant read the decription! D:
chiranjit-mitra Featured By Owner Jul 23, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
You have been featured here [link]
xFantasmax Featured By Owner Jun 3, 2012
I simply love it. It's so unique, so special and meanings (moreover its pretty hahaha)
That would be a tatto I would do for myself, and believe me, I don't want to. But, if I had to choose between all the tattoos I've seen, this would be the one! :D
zakniteh Featured By Owner May 26, 2012
Love the simplicity of the design and beauty of the imitated brush strokes. Gorgeous.
FatBabyDave Featured By Owner May 7, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Very nice
catiescarlett Featured By Owner May 4, 2012
Wow, this actually does look like it's done with a calligraphy brush - great work! Beautiful!
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