Victoria, 37

“My tattoos are part of who I am and I’ll always love my bodysuit now and when I’m 80. The love I get for what I look like is what it’s all about”

by Anna Randal

Tattoos are not a trend nor an addiction, tattoos are a way of life. A tattooed person carries the responsibility that goes with the ink, the responsibility of having a small art galley on your body.

London-based photographer Alan Powdrill embraces people who hold that responsibility through his photo series, Covered. Powdrill captured the beauty of a tattooed person with and without their clothes on and with and without their tattoos showing. His models share their stories and their relationships with their tattoos, while this project leave’s the viewer wondering, are the subjects covered when clothed, or when naked?

Chris, 25

“If I ever forget who I am I take my clothes off and look in the mirror and find out who I am again”

Kenny, 27

“I love my tattoos, it’s a way of life and part of me. I’ll carry on getting them for as long as I can”

Ness, 40

“I’m loving how they change as my body gets older and the creases and wrinkles change how they look When I’ve got no space below my neck I’ll stop”

Simon, 47

“As long as I get to the toilet and piss on my own, I don’t care what I look like when I’m older. I never intended to get this many but I had an addictive personality”

Graham, 58

“I was 51 when I started and my father was already dead and my mum didn’t say anything as she was in the early stages of dementia”

Lillianna, 23

“I don’t feel my opinion will change on my tattoos, I doubt I’ll have any regrets regardless of my age”

Dave, 66

“I started in 1963 when I was 14 and I don’t think I’ll ever stop”

Izzy, 48

“I love being different and everyday I’m asked about them. Good tattoos aren’t cheap, cheap tattoos are not good”

James, 33

“I was 16 and got a small lizard on my hip. My parents said ‘how would I ever get a job!’”

Kimmy, 29

“My Kiss tattoos are my favourites, the pain was incredible but it feels good to show my ultimate dedication to the band”

Peter, 38

“They have given me confidence in life since my Crohn’s illness, I will love them in the future like I do now”

Michelle, 53

“Can’t say what age I’ll stop. While there’s still space to fill, It’ll get filled. I don’t think my attitude will ever change”

Bill, 59

“I love the fact I’m middle aged, have a professional job, am surrounded by straight people and I have ‘No Fucking Way’ tattoed on my chest”

Patrick, 34

“My first tattoo was at 13 and was a secret for 10 years. It’s a part of me and I’m never going to get old”

Alex, 49

“Me mum wasn’t happy at all about the swallow on my hand so I said ‘Look mum it’s not like I’m on the street doing heroin”