Former gang members react to seeing themselves without tattoos

Publish Date
Thursday, 17 August 2017, 11:40AM
Photo / Steven Burton

Photo / Steven Burton

They may have put their life of crime behind them, these former gang members can't escape their past entirely.

Tattoos cover these ex-crims, head to toe from when they were part of gangs or in prison - a time they wish they could forget while trying to forge their new lives.


Photo / Steve Burton

That's where photographer Steven Burton comes in. 

Burton took a series of photographs of these men - many of whom have large facial tattoos - and photoshopped off their permanent markings.


Photo / Steve Burton

Burton's project, Skin Deep: Looking Beyond The Tattoos, pairs the unbelievable before and after photos with emotional interviews with the inked-up men.


Photo / Steve Burton

The ex-gang member's reaction to seeing what they would look like without their tattoos is truly powerful.

Watch their reactions below: