We had the immense pleasure of having Tilak Varma, one of the Indian cricket team’s youngest trailblazers, at our studio! From the moment he stepped inside, it was evident that his passion for cricket radiated from within, transcending the boundaries of the cricket field. He was extremely down-to-earth and striking a conversation with him felt very effortless. He came with the purpose of getting a tattoo sleeve in 7 consecutive days– a daunting feat that most people can’t endure!
Tilak's journey began at Aliens Tattoo Bangalore studio in 2022, where he had gotten portraits of his parents as a heartfelt tribute to them. During the process, he noticed the exceptional work of one of our award-winning tattoo artists, Siddhesh Gawde, who was working on another client's leg sleeve. Their first interaction made a lasting impression on Tilak, and he was determined to get an entire arm sleeve exclusively done by Siddhesh.
However, due to his busy schedule with the IPL, Tilak faced challenges in finding time for the tattoo sleeve. Eventually arrangements were made and our Senior Designer Sameer Kureshi accompanied Siddhesh for a consultation, where they sat together and agreed upon custom one-of-a-kind design done especially for the tattoo sleeve. Tilak, coming from a deeply spiritual background, wanted to get elements that would symbolise his faith and spirituality. Despite his tight timelines, we worked diligently to accommodate the tattoo sleeve in 7 days. Overall, there were six elements added to the sleeve tattoo, which were all customised to fit Tilak’s preferences and put artistic brilliance on the forefront. Let’s have a look at all the elements below!
Tilak is a huge believer in Lord Shiva and wanted a tattoo that would reflect his spirituality. The Shiva tattoo on his bicep is a powerful expression of devotion, spirituality, and personal transformation. Each feature in the tattoo carries its own symbolism; representing aspects like wisdom, spiritual awakening, cosmic rhythm, and the balance between creation and destruction. Sameer, along with valuable inputs from Founder and CEO of Aliens Tattoo and our pro artist, Sunny Bhanushali, weaved the whole design together, creating a visually captivating and spiritually meaningful design.
On the second day, brimming with spiritual energy and reverence, we started on Tilak’s second portrait tattoo – Lord Ganesha. The Ganesha tattoo holds profound symbolism and cultural significance. People often choose to get one to invoke Lord Ganesha's blessings and seek his guidance in overcoming challenges and obstacles in their lives.
After completing the Ganesha tattoo, Tilak’s arm had become extremely swollen and he was advised to rest for a few days. After his speedy recovery, he immediately returned to finish the other elements of his sleeve. His determination is absolutely unmatched!
Om Namah Shivay
Om Namah Shivay is a sacred chant that is widely recited and revered by devotees of Lord Shiva, the Supreme Being associated with creation, preservation, and destruction. It symbolises the eternal, unchanging essence that transcends time and space. Known for his proficiency in intricate script tattoos, multiple award-winning artist Devendra Palav took it upon himself to ensure the chest tattoo would be done flawlessly.
Hibiscus Bunch & Unwavering Self Trust
Tilak’s inner forearm is adorned with a couple of hibiscus flowers. It’s a captivating flower that holds symbolic meaning across various cultures, representing beauty, grace, femininity, and spiritual significance. In Hinduism, red hibiscus flowers are typically offered to Lord Ganesha, hence it was placed strategically in his inner forearm.
On his inner bicep, we created a beautiful mountainous landscape with the words “Unwavering Self Trust” under it, that beautifully captures his perseverance and go-getter attitude.
At just 20 years old, Tilak possesses a unique ability to navigate the complexities of life with an unshakeable spirit. His self-assured demeanour emanates confidence, inspiring those around him.
Tilak’s Adorable Best Friend
Along with his sleeve, a beautiful portrait of Tilak Varma's beloved pet dog, Trigger, was done on his side calf. This unique tattoo holds a special place in Tilak's heart since Trigger is his first pet and their bond is truly remarkable. The intricately designed portrait captures the essence and personality of Trigger, along with a silhouette of them walking side by side, immortalising his presence on Tilak's skin. This tattoo was done by none other than Allan Gois, a multiple award-winning tattoo artist at Aliens Tattoo who specialises in pet portraits.
All of the components of the sleeve, excluding his calf tattoo, were then merged together with intricate designs and finishing touches that would flow together. Getting a tattoo sleeve requires a very high pain tolerance, which Tilak withstood with much ease. Each and every single day, Tilak was remarkably patient and let Siddhesh work his magic. Our staff made sure Tilak felt right at home by distracting him from the pain and catering to his every need, because getting an entire tattoo sleeve in 7 days is no easy task!
Tilak’s open-mindedness and collaborative approach during the tattooing process made this experience even more meaningful. We engaged in inspiring discussions with him about the significance of body art, self-expression, and the storytelling aspect of tattoos. His presence and appreciation for our craft has profoundly impacted us, reaffirming our belief in the transformative power of tattooing as a form of personal and artistic expression!
Check out the highlights of this adventure in the video below: