Today's skull of the day is this amazing piece by Freshly Inked cover artist Big Gus. Many people may know Big Gus from his time on Spike TV's Tattoo Nightmares where he works to create custom cover up tattoos for people who have faced some serious nightmare-worthy tattoo experiences. However, Big Gus does so much more than just cover ups, as you can see with this incredible skull here.
Though he typically works in black and grey realism for his custom pieces, Big Gus is equally talented in color and knows exactly when and how to add color to a piece to make it stand out that much more. Today's pick features a fun pop of red in the roses of this stylized skull to help round the piece out. Apart from the red, Big Gus also successfully replicated the sugar skull aesthetic, however instead of making it look like this skull was painted with traditional sugar skull paint, the white and black highlights help to create a more "carved" look to the skull. Thus, the piece looks like the designs were etched into the skull.
This is a really cool way to render an image that's done quite a lot in the tattoo world without just banging out another sugar skull copy. Another great feature to this piece is the awesome use of shading in the skull's background. The wispy filigree-like designs shoot out from the shadows beneath the skull and feature a cool dot work stipple pattern that we are absolutely obsessed with.
For more creative sugar skull tattoos, make sure to check out some of our favorites right here.