40 Stylish Realism Tattoos by Zlata Kolomoyskaya

It’s been two years since I first discovered the work of Zlata Kolomoyskaya. I have to admit, I wasn’t too impressed as the particular design I came across wasn’t one of @goldy_z’s most memorable pieces. But as I became more familiar with her work, a budding love affair was born. Zlata’s ability to capture a realistic likeness in her work is indisputable, but it’s her unique style that make her work so special. It’s as if she has her own indescribable Instagram filter which gives every piece a little extra intrigue. I could go on and on about how eagerly I anticipate each and every one of Zlata’s designs, but instead, I’ll let her work speak for itself. Below, are forty of my favorite designs by East Coast artist Zlata Kolomoyskaya.

An anglerfish

Anglerfish bring their own light to the party. Which really is the only way to go when you call the deepest darkest abysses of the ocean home. This design is all about lighting. Black and grey ink has never been so beautiful.

A dog

Leave it to Zlata to capture the angle not commonly captured. Dog tattoos are something of a favorite of mine, so when I see a new and creative piece like the one above I get a little excited inside. If I were to get another tattoo of one of my dogs, I could only hope it would turn out this good.

A VW van

There’s nothing cooler than a Volkswagen van. Sure, they may top out at 56 mph but who needs speed when you’re getting there in such style. This design just oozes nostalgia for me and I hope we get an updated snap when everything is said and done.

An astronaut

Well, I think we can all agree that this is the bar when it comes to astronaut tattoos. One of the most impressive aspects of illustration has always been reflections. Everything about this design is top notch but the reflection in the astronaut’s visor is clearly the focal point.

A baby elephant on a swing

If you were worried about Zlata’s designs not being cute enough, you may now rest at ease. Looking at this design, you may find yourself wondering just what makes Zlata’s designs so ridiculously good. And a big part of that answer would be lighting. The way she captures light in her work is indicative of a well-lighted photograph by a photographer who knows what they’re doing.

Tupac Shakur

West side! East side. I just hope everyone gets along. Tupac and Biggie are by far the most widely tatted rappers, which would be expected given their notoriety and the impact they’ve had on modern hip hop.

Robert De Niro

I have to say, this is one of the most impressive portraits I’ve seen in a while. De Niro is the man, and even though I’m not his biggest fan, I wouldn’t mind waking up with this little beauty on my arm in the morning. Zlata, you Ma’am are a genius.

A kiss

Kissing lips is a fun and interesting concept. And one that I come across on a somewhat regular basis. But blink and you’ll miss what makes this design stand out from the rest. Besides nailing the proportions down like the boss that she is, Zlata added a few cosmic details inside the mouth and around the lips that put this design in a different dimension.

A lion

This mesmerizing lion tattoo is bold, harmonious, and full of details that bring it to life in way that makes you want to pull up a chair and stare at it for hours. I created an entire list of tiger and lion tattoos a few weeks back and this design was the best of the bunch.

A boy and an elephant

Scenes like this are something you would have never seen in ink a few decades ago. Slim needle techniques, which allow Zlata to achieve so much detail, have changed the industry for the better. The only thing limiting tattoo artists today is their imaginations.