Creativity Tattoos

Jahan Yousaf

On the outside of Jahan Yousaf’s right forearm is the Vajra Brush, a work of art by Alex Grey. The piece symbolizes the spiritual nature of art. At the center of the drawing is a combination of a paintbrush and the eastern spiritual symbol Vajra. Two winged snakes wrap around it, similar to the Caduceus symbol. Though it is often used as a symbol of medicine, the Caduceus represents occupations associated with the Greek god Hermes.

The artist explains a means that the meaning of the vajra paintbrush is “to awaken people to their own essence through the light of higher vision. The entire history of art is an expression of universal creativity that invisibly surrounds and supports every creative act. The vajra is a spiritual device, a thunderbolt scepter owned by the Hindu god Indra and adopted by the Buddhist sages as a symbol of the diamond-like clarity and brilliance of the mind’s true nature.”


Grimes got this huge brushstroke tattoo on her right forearm in December 2015. Although most of her other tattoos have been done by herself or friends, this one one created by Delphine Noiztoy, an artist who specializes in realism blackwork.

In an instagram post, she explained “Big streaks of paint so I always remember that I’m an artist, Delphine is a master of this style. I hope to add more specks of paint with her later, so that my hands always look as if I’ve just been painting and making a mess.”

The tattoo is a redesign of her existing cross tattoo, which was smaller and more ornate.


    Skylar Grey

    Skylar Grey has an Albert Einstein quote tattooed on her left forearm. It says “If at first the idea is not absurd, then there is no hope for it.” She told KDWB that the tattoo “helps me think outside the box and be creative and not do what everybody else is doing. And not worry if it sounds absurd at first because that’s usually a good thing.”