125 Awesome Crow/Raven Tattoo Ideas and their Meanings

Tattoos are captivating, from a tiny un-noticeable arrow on your forefinger to large elaborate designs; displayed on the body like art, anyone you meet will at least leave you with a few glances. Let us not get into the “intent “of the glance; the point is that they capture attention; no matter what.

The world of body modification draws its inspiration (in many cases) from the spirit world or spiritual beliefs. Numerous tattoo designs are symbolic and define the meaning of that specific tattoo for the particular individual sporting it.

There is so much more to a tattoo then a human canvas with beautiful art on it. While most crow tattoos are grey or black, you may also come across a small number of colored depictions as well.

raven tattoos

What does the crow signify?

There are myths, death, darkness and even the promise of life surrounding the crow symbolism. Multitudinous tattoo enthusiasts will get a crow needled on their body as a connection to traumatic or sad or depressing incidents that they have endured in life. Others follow trends and think the idea of a crow/raven tattoo as “cool.”

Studying the crow brings us to some conclusions. The simple anatomical fact that the crow has the most extensively distinguishable body to brain ratio among all its feathered contemporaries has much to say.

The Forebrain of a crow is significantly evolved and mature. The forebrain is the part where all that intelligence is regulated; this makes the crow’s brain structure similar to that of humans.

If you have come across a crow, which we are sure you have, you will notice that though mostly black, its features reflect purple and blue hues in certain places. Most tattoo artists may not be able to translate that onto your body, but if you are obsessed with this particular trait of the crow features, then you require an expert in Haida, realistic or Celtic tattoos.

In many beliefs, the bluish sheen on the surface of a crow’s feather is the symbolism of life from the void. Crows are marked as spirit guides that lead the path towards gaining consciousness in the mystery of life and detecting the tenuous shifts in vibration and energy surrounding a being.

Tattoo enthusiasts will gladly get this elaborate design tattooed on the most prominent areas of their body or the most hidden ones. They believe in drawing energy from their surroundings and injecting it into their lives. A crow tattoo symbolizes higher perspective and the power of insight.

If you ever get a chance to have a conversation with someone with a crow tattoo, who understands the meaning behind it you will be pleasantly surprised. The depth that surrounds these creatures is intense. Crows are considered animals of strategy and wisdom. They are not shy or subtle about the hint of malice in their existence.

For someone willing to get a crow/raven tattoo, understanding the idea behind this creature, which you are always going to carry with you, is rudimentary.


Fitting to your persona


People depict their inner self and practically “post” reminders of staying grounded and rooted in stricter times, over their bodies. Tattooing is done for reasons other than the aesthetic appeal and carries significance for the individual wearing them.

If you are planning to get a symbolic representation of the crow over your body, then enter the tattoo studio with enough knowledge about what you want. This is a lifetime decision, and you want to be sure that the tattoo you are getting in the form of a raven or a crow personifies your aura.

In the west, crows have always been seen as malicious and negative. This perception springs from the observations made on the nature of the crow. From the Holy Bible to other beliefs, crows have not been portrayed in the best light.

Greek mythology states the curse brought upon the crow by Athena for being disobedient and defiant. In Celtic literature, the crow symbolizes conflict and death.

The stigma attached to the image of the crow makes the idea of getting it needled on your body all the more intriguing. Where this bird signifies death, it also stands for new beginnings in life. You will often find people with crow tattoos ending a sorrowful phase of their lives and starting anew. For many, they are a change, a symbol of the future of hope.

raven tattoo   

Interpreting the tattoo

The use of multiple crows in a tattoo has a profound significance; there are varieties you will find depicting a single crow with numerous eyes. To understand this, the following is a general guide

  • One crow: This is usually seen as a symbol of bad luck
  • Two crows: This tattoo is for good luck
  • Three crows: This tattoo is to bring health
  • Four crows: This tattoo attracts wealth
  • Five crows: They may bring sickness
  • Six crows: they symbolize death

Some would choose six crows. Why do you ask? This may express the end of their past lives or a sorrow filled experience and embed the lessons learned from that unfavorable time into the very existence of the individual while promising a new life.

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Raven tattoo ideas

Bird themed tattoos have been prevalent in the tattoo industry for quite some time. Pigeons, peacock, and parrots are the most trending tattoos. Ravens and crows are the ones that only a few “dare” to get needled onto their bodies. This can be attributed to the stigma and mystery that surrounds these black-birds.

The history of these black-tattoos can be traced back to the Celtics and their beliefs of death and life. They symbolize magic, myth, memories, lucid dreaming and war for many. Although most of these tattoos are black or gray, you can certainly play with color and create other fascinating depictions of these birds.

Out top ideas for the raven or crow tattoos are as follows. Of course, you can come up with customized designs that speak to your persona, but these are a few of the most developed designs for crow or raven tattoos.

crow tattoos  

1.     Flying crows

You can find a few things about this tattoo. This is mostly laced on the forearm where the smaller versions of entirely black crow either flying away from the hand or towards it. This tattoo is drawn on the inner side or the side of the forearm. They can be seen leaving a poppy flower, a tree or a bush. They can also be drawn on their own without a place of release. These tattoos are mostly entirely black with little gray shading.

2.     The heart crow

While any tattoo can be placed on your arm, a crow may signify a lot. This is usually set right above where your heart is, a little under the shoulder. A flying crow in all its glory and a fierce expression can depict many things as the bearer of this tattoo. This is also one of the most private places to place this tattoo. Although drawing a bird mid-flight may be a masterpiece, but there can be reasons why you would want to set it closer to your heart instead of putting it on display for everyone.

3.     The crow leaving the cage

This is certainly not a trending tattoo. People get this due to its strong symbolism and communicative scenario. A bird leaving a cage or choosing to stay in the cage despite the door being unlocked can speak volumes regarding your innermost view of your little world. The cage may signify a lot, but what the crow signifies is far more necessary.

4.     The Shoulder

The part that extends towards the inner chest and not the outer shoulder is also a place where you can try out this bird perched on penetrating branches. This can also be placed on the back of the body as a significant reminder of the times that you have endured and remain with you.  A sharp looking bird perched quietly on a branch only needs a reason to spread its wings.

raven tattoos

5.     The crow on the back

This is one of the most powerful depictions of this mysterious creature. A bird in flight extending its wings on both arms at the back of the body, between where the ribs lie. The bird is placed directly over the location of the spinal cord and its wings expand on both sides.

6.     Color

While associating a color with this dark and mysterious bird may seem unconventional, you can certainly play with the idea. Place a crow midst blossoming roses with the thorns on full display and place it in a prominent area. You can also paint the actual bird red or blue in some cases to insinuate new beginnings.

7.      The inner wrists

Most people with tattoos place a tattoo here as a reminder of strength, virtue, and patience. While others will place reminders and other things on this location, you can certainly go the crow-route. A dark silhouette can be inked on the wrists to signify new beginnings o for aesthetic purposes.crow-tattoos

8.     A butterfly breaking into birds

You can get a black butterfly disintegrating into crows on your shoulder or forearm. This can also be placed on the back of your hand with the crows flying towards the palm.

9.     Art

If you are a dedicated tattoo lover, then this is your cup of tea. You can get a piece of art revolving around the crow tattoo inked on your back. This is the perfect way to tell your story and embrace the crow symbolism.

10. Trail of crows

This is perfect to place on the hip bone either away from towards the belly button. A crop top can do justice to this tattoo and display it to its fullest. Another fashion trend that compliments this style of the crow tattoo is low waisted jeans.


Important questions

Q. Will it hurt

Pain tolerance is relative, depending on your threshold of pain and the placement of this tattoo. If you are getting an extraordinarily detailed or elaborate tattoo of the crow, then it is wise to get yourself ready for the irritation and burning feeling. A detailed crow tattoo requires the needle to move a lot on the skin which can be very uncomfortable.

Q. The Costs

If you are getting this done at a reputable tattoo parlor, it will cost you a good penny. Depending on how detailed and #D you want the tattoo the cost will vary.

Q. When to get it

It is highly recommended to get a tattoo during winters or moderate weather. Summer can be harsh on your skin with all the sun and activities. Since these tattoos take some time to heal, try them in moderately chilly weather.

Q.  Should you get it when you are ill?

Getting a tattoo when your immune system is not up to mark is not the right idea. This can make the wound more prone to infections and slow down the healing process. You need your blood cells to be able to heal on their own, and this is not very easy for the body when you are sick.

Q. Where should I get it done

With the ease of internet, you can easily find the most highly rated tattoo parlor in your locality. Do your research and speak to your prospect tattoo artist regarding the specifications of your crow tattoo, whether you want it with the blue and purple sheen or you want it lifelike. Check out their previous work and make sure you are comfortable with the procedure they have. It is best to spend a little more and get it done from a reputable place.



It is best to do thorough research before you get an elaborate tattoo. The crow tattoo is not for everyone, but if you want it for just for the aesthetic appeal then goes right ahead. The aftercare is similar to that of another tattoo, and daily cleaning is necessary.