Koi is a symbol of the Japanese culture. It is also known in Japan as "Nishiki" which translates to "colorful cloth". Koi means carp in Japanese and koi are part of the carp family. Although the koi tends to be associated with Japanese culture, it originated in China and parts of Eastern Asia. They originally were black and lacked color but over hundreds of years as the species evolved it started showing color variations. These colorful variations were then separated and bred selectively to create a wide variety of color.
The koi are know for the ability to completely lift themselves out of the water which is a typical pose of the ink work seen today. Koi is a beautiful color fish that is a perfect candidate for tattoo work.
The beautiful bright colors of the Koi make it a great choice for vibrant tattoo work. They are usually chosen for larger sizes - a shoulder blade, a rib cage but they can also be reduced to a calf size that looks quite striking with the shape of the calf.
Koi fish represent strength and honor. It is no wonder it is a popular choice for tattoo lovers. The color and variation choices and the honorable symbolism behind the Koi, the Koi tattoo is a great choice for tattoo designs. Water and cherry blossoms are typical additions to the Koi art.