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Posted on Nov 13, 2016

Former Gang Members See Themselves Without Their Tattoos

"I don't remember the last time I saw myself this way."

Skin Deep is a new project from photographer Steven Burton in which former gang members are shown what their lives would be like without their tattoos.

Burton is collecting donations on a Kickstarter page in the hopes of turning Skin Deep into a book. These 9 people are all participants in the project:

1. Samuel Gonzalez

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"I'm giving this picture to my grandma. The first time she saw my tattoos, she cried."

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"I'm giving this picture to my grandma. The first time she saw my tattoos, she cried."

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"I'm giving this picture to my grandma. The first time she saw my tattoos, she cried."

2. Marcos Luna

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"The person you see in this picture is a human being... just like you."

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"The person you see in this picture is a human being... just like you."

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"The person you see in this picture is a human being... just like you."

3. David Peña

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"I look very young. It's totally different."

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"I look very young. It's totally different."

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"I look very young. It's totally different."

4. Francisco Flores

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"I can't remember the last time I saw myself like this."

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"I can't remember the last time I saw myself like this."

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"I can't remember the last time I saw myself like this."

5. Mario Lundes

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"People stare at me in the streets. I probably look like a dangerous person to them. But I gave up on both drugs and violence."

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"People stare at me in the streets. I probably look like a dangerous person to them. But I gave up on both drugs and violence."

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"People stare at me in the streets. I probably look like a dangerous person to them. But I gave up on both drugs and violence."

6. David Williams

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"Looking like this, sometimes I feel like nobody wants me near their kids."

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"Looking like this, sometimes I feel like nobody wants me near their kids."

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"Looking like this, sometimes I feel like nobody wants me near their kids."

7. Denis Zandoran

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"I don't wanna go back to what I used to be."

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"I don't wanna go back to what I used to be."

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"I don't wanna go back to what I used to be."

8. Erin Echavarría

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"Now I no longer have to wake up inside a jail."

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"Now I no longer have to wake up inside a jail."

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"Now I no longer have to wake up inside a jail."

9. Wilson Ramos

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"Now I'm enjoying my life, you know? I want to taste everything that I'd let escape before. That's all I want."

A few days after this photo was taken, during a quarrel with his girlfriend, Wilson Ramos was shot and killed by three policemen.

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"Now I'm enjoying my life, you know? I want to taste everything that I'd let escape before. That's all I want."

A few days after this photo was taken, during a quarrel with his girlfriend, Wilson Ramos was shot and killed by three policemen.

Steven Burton / Via stevenburtonphotography.com

"Now I'm enjoying my life, you know? I want to taste everything that I'd let escape before. That's all I want."

A few days after this photo was taken, during a quarrel with his girlfriend, Wilson Ramos was shot and killed by three policemen.

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