Kanji are characters used in Japanese writing. Kanji tattoos are immensely popular in western culture, even among people who do not speak or write Japanese. Because of this, it is important to do the proper research before getting a kanji tattoo to determine the true meaning of the kanji symbol. In western society, common kanji tattoos include the symbols for love, happiness, peace and tranquility. Some people get their significant other's name tattooed in kanji symbols. Other people use kanji symbols in tattoos of their own surname. Unfortunately, there are manny errors that can occur when people who can not read kanji get a kanji tattoo. Kanji symbols can have as many as 20 different meanings, and the official meaning is not always the same as the common meaning. For example, the kanji symbol for "peaceful" more commonly means "cheap."
Kanji symbols can differ drastically in meaning when two or more are added together. For example, two kanji symbols that are commonly combined in the west to mean "the power of trust" actually translate to "dependence." Kanji symbols must be drawn in a specific way in order to avoid appearing childlike, so kanji tattoos must be inked by a tattoo artist who is familiar with Japanese calligraphy. The best ideas for kanji tattoos are to speak with a native Japanese person, make sure your tattoo artist is familiar with Japanese calligraphy and do research about the kanji you wish to feature in your tattoo:
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