markdeerhunter

Random or theme based

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On a traditional style arm full of one shot pieces I don't think a cohesive theme is necessarily important, unless of course the theme is "rad tattoos." It is of course possible to put together a collection of related imagery but when you start filling in awkward gaps you would have less freedom of choice for those areas.

I do like the look of a big cohesive piece, and it can be done in a traditional american style, but I think big conceptual or thematic designs lend themselves better to the Japanese aesthetic.

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"Traditional american" is theme enough. I think the style lends itself well to having a bunch of random stuff. Because they're so bold, and the color palette is limited, they are going to look cohesive together no matter what the subject matter(s).

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when i started, i had a theme going in that i wanted all of my tattoos to be vaguely family-related. but then when i ran out of ideas i just started slapping them on there : )

I agree with ChaosDani that:

"Traditional american" is theme enough.

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