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Yes, it seems morbid for some. Others cringe at the sight of it. But when it comes to design, you can’t expect everyone to understand. What matters most is that you deliver what is expected. And for a lot of designers, this means incorporating different symbols like skulls into their design. 

What Skulls Symbolize

The use of skulls as a symbol has been going on for such a long time. In fact, it is one of the oldest symbolisms used all over the world.

The meaning of skulls vary. Here are some of the things that they symbolize:

  • Fear or caution. This is evident in the way skulls are used to warn people against poisonous substances, or against pirates at sea.
  • It may come as a surprise to more modern designers, but the skull is actually used as a symbol for vanity. In fact, an 1892 illustration made by Charles Allan Gilbert shows the portrait of a lady staring at her own reflection, which, when looked at from a different angle, actually shows a picture of a skull.
  • Life after death or death itself. Once of its most popular representations, the skull is seen as a symbol of death, as well as what comes after it.
  • Nonconformity, rebelliousness, courage. It is a common symbol used in tattoos, signs, flags and others to depict a rebellious brand of courage and a pledge to nonconformity.
  • Good luck. Believe it or not, skulls are actually seen as a good luck charm in different cultures. They believe that the skull wards off any illness or bad luck, which is why other people wear these as medallions, pendants, and other kinds of jewelry.

Seeing that skulls are so much more than just scary pictures, one can imagine how much you can do with it when you incorporate it into personal projects or to projects that some of your clients (especially some of the more rebellious ones) commission you to do.

Unique Skulls Designs

Here are 35 of the most unique skull designs we can find. Through these different skull designs, we are hoping that you can find inspiration on how you can use one of the most popular and oldest symbols used in history. See how different designers have taken the classic skull to different levels of design – from black and white to multi-colored, from serious to fun, from amazingly realistic to absolutely whimsical. Enjoy!

Skull Coffee

Skull Coffee

Death Finger Print by P. Von Haggen

Death Finger Print by P. Von Haggen

Pong Skull by Well

Pong Skull by Well

Oldsalt by Chris Green

Oldsalt by Chris Green (1)

Kill the Sun, Bring Me Night by Jack Bloom

Kill the Sun, Bring Me Night by Jack Bloom (1)

Dead to the law by Daniel Seong

dead to the law by Daniel Seong (1)

Live Fast Die Last by Joshua Ariza

Live Fast Die Last by Joshua Ariza (1)

Skull logo by Gal Yuri

Skull logo by Gal Yuri

Sick Snowboards by Nebojsa Matkovic

Sick Snowboards by Nebojsa Matkovic

Kingpin Hazy Deeds by Andrew Fairclough

Kingpin Hazy Deeds by Andrew Fairclough (1)

Motoskulls by Kemal Sanli

Motoskulls by Kemal Sanli (1)

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Posted by Igor Ovsyannykov

I'm a digital nomad and entrepreneur bouncing around South East Asia. When I'm not working here, I'm out taking photos. Follow me on Instagram: @igorovsyannykov

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