If you’re an avid fan of the Harry Potter series with a particular fondness for the house of Slytherin and the Dark Arts, then the Dark Mark tattoo theme is perfect for you. It’s an awesome design that any loyal Harry Potter fan will immediately recognize upon seeing your tattoo. It looks awesome on your skin, and it’s even a pretty great icebreaker!
Official depictions of the Dark Mark can be seen in the movie adaptations on the arms of some of the members of the house of Slytherin. It’s depicted as an emerald skull with a snake protruding out of its mouth. Characters like Barty Crouch Jr. and Draco Malfoy have openly displayed their Dark Marks in the movies.
People who get a Dark Mark tattoo are always very happy with it. When another loyal fan sees it, the conversations are usually pretty great. If you’re trying to look for a friend with whom you can share your love for Harry Potter without explicitly asking everyone you know and risking the inevitable awkward pause if they’re not fans, getting a Dark Mark tattoo is generally an effective way to get it done!
In this article, I’ve compiled 30 of the most badass “Dark Mark” tattoos there are on the internet. Each piece’s artist is credited so that you can check out more of their work or choose to message them directly. Towards the end, I’ll also be explaining some things about the Dark Mark in the Potterverse, so stick around!
Dark Mark Tattoos for Harry Potter Fans
Black and Grey Dark Mark Tattoos
This piece takes a more accurate approach to drawing the Dark Mark. The serpent, mouth agape, protrudes from the skull like a tongue, forming a figure 8, accurate to the official depictions in the series, by Mayra Gabriela. (@arte.en.sangre on Instagram).
In this ominous looking forearm piece, the artist projects the light source from below, giving the skull an incredibly sinister appearance while the serpent hisses furiously in the foreground. A brightly glowing Deathly Hallows symbol adorns the forehead of the skull, by Joel Rice. (@joelricetattoo on Instagram).
In this piece, the artist uses dotwork techniques to give depth and texture to the skull and serpent. A Deathly Hallows symbol is seen on the right eye of the skull, as if painted on with a brush, forming the illusion of a snake’s eye. Flowers are seen emerging from within the serpent’s constricting pose, by Belink. (@belink.latatueria on Instagram).
In this piece, the artist uses hatching techniques in order to illustrate the scales of the serpent and the textures on the skull, giving this piece a different feel. The serpent’s tongue is colored a subtle dark red while its fangs and eyelids are highlighted in white as a finishing touch, by Raphael Stanley. (@r.stanley.tattoo on Instagram).
In this shin outer forearm tattoo, the snake is stabbed violently through the neck by the Elder Wand, one of the key objects that comprise the fabled Deathly Hallows. The snake hisses in agony as it is stabbed, meanwhile the symbol of the Deathly Hallows appears over the forehead of the skull, by La Mutinerie Tattoo Shop. (@lamutinerietattoo on Instagram).
In this blackwork piece, the original Dark Mark design is used. Beside it are the iconic exchange between the fan favorite antihero, Professor Severus Snape, and Professor Dumbledore, “After all this time?”, to which Snape replies “Always.”. You can further personalize your own Dark Mark tattoo by adding your favorite Harry Potter quote, by reaperz inc. (@reaperz_inc_tattoo_studio on Instagram).
This piece by midori.ink takes a unique approach on drawing this Dark Mark tattoo. Instead of realism, the artist opts for a more crude illustration style. Turns and corners are marked with sharp, swift strokes. The snake’s eye closely resembles the eye of Ra in ancient Egyptian mythology, by midori.ink. (@arts.midori on Instagram).
This piece takes a more detailed, realistic approach to drawing the Dark Mark. The skull’s eye sockets are cracked heavily from within, and the snake, with smooth scales, stretches its jaws wide open. The symbol for the Deathly Hallows is once again used on the forehead, by Elise “LiLi” Allen. (@li_wiztattoo13 on Instagram).
In this piece, the snake, with smooth, black scales, enters the skull from the top at the right eye socket and slithers below from the upper jaw. The skull is severely cracked, and a reverse Deathly Hallows symbol appears as if branded on its forehead, by Steven Anderson. (@sandersontat2 on Instagram).
Realistic Dark Mark Tattoos
In this incredibly detailed forearm piece, the artist draws the Dark Mark in a photo realistic style. The orientation and positioning of the tattoo elements correspond directly to the official Dark Mark’s appearance, except it’s done in a realistic black and grey style, by Claudia Ferrarini. (@claudiarealistictattoo on Instagram).
In this piece, the snake is found slithering to the top of the skull rather than at the bottom. With an especially vicious expression, it hisses into the air while the skull seemingly laughs into the distance. The artist uses detailed hatching techniques to add some depth, by Dylan Smith. (@dylansmith_ink on Instagram).
In this piece, subtle splattering patterns can be seen around the outlines of the tattoo. This is done using watercolor tattoo techniques in order to add some energy to the piece, by Sarah Wagner. (@sarahwagner.tattoodesign on Instagram).
In this piece, the skull is wrinkled from intense weathering. The snake’s scales are shaded in very deeply, almost as if it had obsidian shards for scales. The snake’s ghastly white eyes and razor sharp fangs give this piece a fearsome appearance, by Kayliegh Smith. (@bambibronxtattoo on Instagram).
In this awesome piece by Devin O’Brien, he uses shading techniques to imitate the appearance of charcoal drawings. The skull is smeared on by the symbol of the Deathly Hallows, and the snake, with multiple eyes, lets out a nasty hiss, by Devin O’Brien. (@devinobrientattoos on Instagram).
In this forearm piece, the skull and serpent are drawn with the help of motion lines, which give this boldly shaded piece a dynamic feel. The massive, empty eye sockets of the skull give this piece a ghastly ambiance. The fiery black and white pattern on the snake also add to the dynamic setting of this piece, by Metamorphosis. (@metamorphosis204 on Instagram).
In this piece, the skull’s eyesockets glow a ghostly white and gaze deeply into the observer. A Deathly Hallows symbol, crudely drawn, adorns its forehead while the snake slithers from below, by Tattoo Freddie. (@tattoofreddie2on Instagram).
In this piece, the snake, adorned with a rather ethereal pattern on its head, slithers quickly downwards as if in in vicious pursuit of its prey. The skull, shaded effectively using hatching techniques, has razor sharp fangs, adding to its sinister aura, by DARK ARTS. (@artesobscurae on Instagram).
In this piece, the photorealistic illustration of the skull is contrasted by an almost geometric illustration style of the hissing serpent. Its scales are drawn like diamonds or crystal fragments, giving this serpent a rugged, diabolical appearance, by Kevin Moore. (@kmoore_tattoos on Instagram).
In this incredible photo realistic piece, the serpent, adorned with a beautiful scale pattern, looks almost as if it is laughing. The Deathly Hallows symbol on the skull’s forehead looks as if it was smeared on hastily. Bold shading and dotwork are used to give this piece an especially sinister appearance, by Sebastian Petersson. (@sebastian.bourbon on Instagram).
Minimalist Dark Mark Tattoos
In this vibrant blackwork watercolor piece, the skull and serpent are drawn using a minimalist outline. Its appearance closely resembles a caduceus or the Staff of Hermes in Greek Mythology. A bright emerald flame blazes in the background in watercolor style, by Selena Barret. (@selinabarrett on Instagram).
Colored Dark Mark Tattoos
In ths vividly colored design, the artist exercises their artistic freedom and personalizes this tattoo design by adding color and additional elements. Instead of a colorless outline, the serpent in this piece is colored a light green color with dark green spots. Two pink roses emerge from behind the skull, and in the background is the symbol of the Deathly Hallows, by Joonas Rosenqvist. (@tattoojoonas on Instagram).
In this piece, the artist takes a realistic approach to drawing the skull and serpent. Something like this would be more accurate to what a wizard would see in the sky after a death eater had cast morsmordre. Just as described in the books, the serpent protrudes from the mouth of a colossal skull, blazing in an emerald haze. The owner also personalizes their design by adding a Deathly Hallows symbol, which is not found in official depictions of the Dark Mark, by Soldier Mikes Tattoo. (@soldiermikestattoos on Instagram).
In this fascinating piece by Kate Fluet, elements are drawn in a unique style that can be most accurately described as “round”. The artist shies away from directly drawing the scales and instead opts to go with a pointillistic approach. The mosaic-looking scales almost glimmer and give this piece a unique, elegant feel, by Kate Fluet. (@kate.fluet on Instagram).
In this piece, vibrant hues of green and yellow dominate. Watercolor techniques are used to give the tattoo its vibrant color, by Roachard Horton. (@artbyroachard on Instagram).
In this piece, the top portion of the cranium of the skull is broken into fragments. The glowing Deathly Hallows symbol on its forehead and the viciously slithering serpent are colored in intense shades of green, by Anthony Burkhead. (@frankenhead13 on Instagram).
Just as described in the books, this Dark mark tattoo uses blazes of emerald haze along with bold shades of black to give this piece an chaotic aura, by Dolium Tattoo Shop. (@doliumtattooshop on Instagram).
In this calf tattoo, the artist puts a spin on the typical Dark Mark tattoo by turning it into personal piece with more feminine energy. The skull glows a subtle pink while the snake is colored blue and pink and is splattered with bits of black. Instead of a violent hiss, the snake here is calm and poised. Pink flowers adorn the skull and serpent as finishing touches, by Morgan Reynolds. (@morganchenoa on Instagram).
This piece stays true to the original depiction of the Dark Mark and adds a vibrant coloring theme. Using watercolor techniques, the artist creates the illusion of blue and purple watercolor bleeding from the center. The silhouette glows a bright cyan color, by Sea Of Ink Tattoo Kingsland. (@seaofinktattookingsland on Instagram).
Cute Dark Mark Tattoos
In this adorable Dark Mark tattoo, the outline is done crudely on purpose to create a feeling of lightness. The snake’s eyes are drawn in a cartoonish manner by making them huge and round. To contrast this, some detailed stippling is employed to add some depth to the piece. The iconic Harry Potter lightning bolt scar appears over the skull’s right eye socket, by Emily. (@pastelpentagram on Instagram).
In this charming Dark Mark tattoo, the skull and serpent are covered in strawberry glaze and rainbow sprinkles to achieve a cutesy look. The snake, with pretty, long eyelashes, blushes as its smooth emerald scales sparkle in all its donut topped cuteness, by Gabby Maravelas. (@stabbygabby on Instagram).
Dark Mark Tattoo FAQs
What is the Dark Mark?
At its core, the Dark Mark is Lord Voldemort’s coat of arms, identified by an emerald skull with a snake protruding from its mouth. It’s also used as a badge of membership as it is branded on the left inner forearm of all Death Eaters. The brand is often used as a means of private communication, as mentioned by Professor McGonagall in The Deathly Hallows. When the Dark Mark appears in the sky, it’s likely a sign that one of the Death Eaters have struck and killed someone in the wizarding world. It’s a tragic sight to see as a wizard.
Which arm is the Dark Mark on?
Left. It is well known that JK Rowling takes a lot of inspiration for the Death Eaters from the Nazis in the Second World War. The Waffen-SS, a Nazi paramilitary organization had their blood groups tattooed on their inner left arm, usually under the armpit. Some have speculated that this was the inspiration for the placement of the Dark Mark.
What is the Dark Mark used for?
In The Deathly Hallows, Professor McGonagall explicitly states, while talking to Snape, that the Death Eaters use their Dark Marks as a means of communication, though it isn’t explicitly explained how this works. In the Deathly Hallows, Bellatrix Lestrange uses it to request the presence of Lord Voldemort, and is frequently seen in the films as either fading or growing, depending on the strength of Lord Voldemort.
There are many iconic symbols from the Harry Potter series that can be used as a tattoo, but the Death Eater is probably one of the most recognizable ones. Its ominous appearance draws the confusion of the uninitiated… and the excitement of those in the know. It’s a great tattoo to have, and you’ll love the conversations it’ll draw out.
Did you enjoy these Dark Mark tattoo designs or are you looking for more inspiration? Check out the following links to see more designs from talented artists.