Tattoo + You: A Photo Story of Body Ink

Why do people get tattoos?

That was the simple question behind this portrait project. Not surprisingly, it turns out that the answers ranged from the simple to the highly complex and deeply personal. I am so grateful for the people who had the courage to be photographed under the bright lights.

As a portrait photographer, people have been my primary fascination and I have had the good fortune to photograph literally thousands of people. It was through my portrait work that I started to see more and more tattoos showing up on my subjects. Body ink has moved into mainstream culture no longer sitting on the fringe of sailors, bikers and rock stars. The tattoo has fully arrived.

The idea was this: if a person had a tattoo and was willing to share up to 300 words about the inspiration behind their body ink, then a portrait session was arranged. The response was amazing.

I hope you enjoy this eclectic collection of portraits, tattoos and stories.

Gordon Ross

I liked this bit on tattoos