A few years ago—by accident, really—Carl Zimmer became the de facto curator of science-based body art. The author of The Loom blog over at DISCOVER as well as numerous books, Zimmer asked his readers about their tattoos, and whether any of them had inked themselves up in science-inspired motifs. The response was greater than he imagined.
Those responses, which often arrived in Zimmer’s inbox in the form of images, have now been compiled into a book published earlier this month, . In it, the science obsessed—or at least those enthusiastic enough to etch their favorite equations, diagrams, schematics, and formulas directly onto their dermises—show off their needlework in a coffee table-worthy collection of pics, arranged by Zimmer into categories centered on major scientific disciplines: math, chemistry, neuroscience, evolutionary biology, astronomy, and a dedicated chapter on DNA.
From those pages we’ve pulled a few of our favorite works—from Darwin’s finches to a Dali-like double helix to a front-to-back neural net—and collected them here. Click through the link above to see some of our favorite science-derived ink from the collection.