In Japan there’s an art form that by any standard would be considered extreme where the paint brushes are made of two dozen needles and the canvas is human flesh. This segment on Japanese full body tattoos talks about the life long commitment these tattoo collectors take on. Costing 10’s of thousands of dollars and some even reaching well into the six figures, body suit tattoos are not for the faint of heart or finance.



When it comes to reference, there’s still something about books that we tend to love. Maybe it’s how personal it is to flip through glossy pages bound together by a hard cover, or maybe it’s just the fact that we’re old and magazines/ books are to us what iPads and websites are to younger generations. Needless to say, magazines may be on the experiencing a down turn but hard cover books (or coffee table books) are still a valuable resource that never run out of batteries. This time around we got our hands on a release by Edition Reuss entitled,  “Traditional and Modern Styles: Tattoo in Japan”. This hard cover book is a 1st edition release, which boasts 320 pages, and at 6.4 lbs it’s good enough for a doorstop or quite possibly even a weapon.


An inside look at the pages of “Traditional & Modern Styles: Tattoo in Japan”  |  Photos by Garret Carter


In this opulently illustrated title, it chronicles a variety of methods and styles, which range from old school to modern. Of particular interest to us were the neo-traditional styles of tattooing and with rich photographs and a photo journalistic feel which is uncompromising and raw, the book is more than generous.  With text in both English and German, this is a must have book for your home or studio library. Inside, there’s page after page of Japanese style tattoos, which range from the mild to wild and the body suits featured in this epic volume, are timeless and tireless pieces, which deserves the attention it gains.


Tattoo in Japan, is a book that deserves to occupy space in your library and it elegantly captures Japanese culture and art in a package that is deserving of its high price point. If you’re particular in the way you examine tattoos you’ll find this book a great visual piece,  which will stimulate your creativity as well as your craft. So in closing, you already know that you get what you pay for so catch a budget and break bread.