Literature Tattoos

Ruby Rose


Ruby Rose has a rabbit tattooed on the right side of her lower back. The white rabbit holding a pocket-watch is inspired by Lewis Carroll’s classic book Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.

This tattoo seems to have been one of her more painful ones. She showed off her fresh ink in a February 2012 Facebook photo and wrote “And we done 3 hours I want to vomit on myself.”

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Lucy Hale


Lucy Hale has cursive writing tattooed below her left breast. It says “Courage, dear heart” which is a line from C.S. Lewis’ book The Voyage of the Dawn Treader in the Chronicles of Narnia series:

“But no one except Lucy knew that as it circled the mast it had whispered to her, “Courage, dear heart,” and the voice, she felt sure, was Aslan’s, and with the voice a delicious smell breathed in her face.”

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Marzia Bisognin


Marzia Bisognin got this cartoon-style portrait of author Banana Yoshimoto tattooed on her arm in July 2016. She commissioned illustrator Anke Weckmann to create the drawing and then had it tattooed by Katja Graaf at Velvet Tattoo in Brighton UK. She wanted the design to be an artistic interpretation rather than a literal portrait. On her YouTube channel she explained:

I asked an amazing illustrator and artist that I follow on Twitter to make a design for me…I don’t know if you can tell who it’s supposed to be because I told her to keep it not too exactly alike to the person that I’m tattooing. But I think she did a great job and I’m very excited about it.

Marzia deliberated a lot where to put this tattoo and hadn’t finalized her decision until the day that she got it. She chose her right arm so that she could have a different theme for each arm. Her left side has tattoos that describe her personality and her right side has her inspirations.

This arm [points to her left arm] — I didn’t want to add to it because all these tattoos are personal to me; they have a meaning related to the way I am. But instead, the tattoo I have back here [showing her right arm] is for my parents. They’re an inspiration for me. And since I’m getting Banana Yoshimoto, which is a huge inspiration to me as well, I thought maybe in the front here.

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Marzia Bisognin

Marzia got this tattoo on her left forearm in September 2015. The writing, which says “La casa sulla luna” in her native language Italian, means “The house on the moon” in English. It’s a phrase from the book We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson, which has helped Marzia to deal with her social anxiety. The house on the the moon is a metaphor for a feeling of safety. On her blog she explained:

But this topic brings me to the next tattoo: “La casa sulla luna”, which translated is “The house on the moon”.

This refers to my social anxiety: once again, you know I struggle with it, and it used to be really really bad. This sentence comes from one of my favourite books, “We Have Always Lived in the Castle”, where the protagonist, after going through a tragedy, can never leave the house without feeling observed and judged by people.

If you have social anxiety you know that feeling very well: as soon as you leave your safe place, it feels like everybody is staring at you, and you just want to hide from the world.

In the story, the girl would imagine her safe place in her head (the house on the moon) while being outside, just so that thought could be somewhat comforting to her. And so I tried it myself, I would think about it as well while leaving the house, or when I was in uncomfortable situations, and it helped me greatly.

That’s why it’s on my body, it’s a constant reminder that I can do it, it’s all in my head, and if I think about positive things instead of letting my dark thoughts come to mind, everything will be fine.

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Melanie Martinez


Melanie Martinez has a tattoo on her left calf of the children’s book character Madeline along with a quote from the series.  In the stories, Madeline lives in a Catholic boarding school in Paris.  She and her schoolmates always say a prayer before they eat their meals: “We love our bread, we love our butter, but most of all, we love each other.” It is a reminder that the people in our lives are the most important thing.  Melanie included this prayer in her tattoo, which features Madeline holding a loaf of bread and is surrounded by little pink hearts. It was inked by artist Nat G at Good Luck Tattoo in January 2016.

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Kirstin Maldonado


Kirstin Maldonado went for tattoo number four on May 3, 2016 after playing a show in San Diego, CA.  She got a crescent moon on her right wrist, which is a matching tattoo with a friend.  Artist Hunter Urscum writes: “Tattooed multi Grammy award winning platinum artist Kirstin Maldonado of Pentatonix after her show last night. Her and her Homegirl got some cute little crescent moons. Cool chicks, yalls gotta check out her music.”

If her instagram caption “Khaleesi 🌙” is any indication, it seems that they decided on moons as a reference to the Game of Thrones book series and TV show.  The character Khal Drogo calls his wife Daenerys Targaryen (Khaleesi) “moon of my life” and she calls him “my sun and stars.”  We haven’t seen Kirstin’s friend’s tattoo, but it’s probably a sun and stars.

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Jesy Nelson


Jesy Nelson got this fairy tale inspired tattoo on the inside of her left arm for her boyfriend Jake Roche from the band Rixton. It says “Once upon a time” in a storybook-style gothic font.  “It’s really cringe, but I recently had this done,” she told Fabulous magazine. “When me and Jake first got together… before I’d fall asleep he’d tell me a little fairytale story about how we got together. So it’s really cringe, but it’s cute.”

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LIGHTS Poxleitner


Lights has a lion on her left elbow.  She has a song called “Lions” and admires them as an animal.  “I’ve always thought lions were the epitome of beauty and strength and power,” she says.

Lions are also tied to memories of her childhood.  “My mom used to sit there in bed and read us the Narnia series growing up. And Aslan [the lion character in the books] represented something really great.  It’s just kinda grace and power all in one.”