‘Ireland’s most tattooed man’ shares pic taken without ink – before mum cut ties

A dad who got more than 600 tattoos in just six years has revealed how he looked without them.

Chris Dalzell became addicted to body art to help him cope with his daughter’s health battles.

He later became known as ‘Ireland’s most tattooed man’ after covering 95% of his skin.

READ MORE: 'Ireland’s most tattooed man' gets Kray twins portraits on back for sentimental reason

And Chris now uses his extreme appearance to raise awareness for Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, a rare condition his daughter has that affects her connective tissues.

Jessica, now six, has spent half her life in hospital and is in constant discomfort – but her father’s tattoos always make her smile.

But Chris, 36, has now shared pictures showing how different he looked before the eye-popping transformation.

Speaking with Daily Star, the chef said: “My family haven’t seen me without tattoos now for six-and-a-half years.

“Looking at photos from that time I know it’s still me. I see myself as I am now. But I do see a less mature person because I’ve matured and grown up from having tattoos and kids.

“It doesn’t phase me and I happily look at the pictures but I prefer how I look now. I’m a lot happier and content now with my life than I have ever been.”

His intense tattoo journey – involving eight-hour sessions three days a week – caused tension within his close family.

But he recently reconnected with his mum who had never seen him in person with his unmissable ink.

Chris, from Bangor, Northern Ireland, said: “It was strange because I had lost contact with my close family during the process of getting tattooed.

“I wasn’t speaking to my mum at the time. My mum only saw me with tattoos when we made contact again at Christmas.

“It was a bit shocking but she said ‘you're still my son and I can still see my son in you’.

“She admitted she was worried about seeing me with the tattoos but she said once she saw me I was still her son and it didn't phase her at all. That was nice for me.

“My family have all just accepted them and Jess never wants the tattoos gone.”

And family remains everything to Chris – who added a portrait of his second daughter on his back next to those of the Kray twins at the weekend.

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The gangsters are already positioned beside Jessica and now the brutal brothers represent “protection” to both of Chris’s children.

Last week he said: “I know the Krays have a bad reputation but they were very loyal. It was more about a sign of protection on my back.

“If I’m out and about with my T-shirt off people will see that it’s clearly a picture of my daughter and the meaning behind the Krays represents protection.”

He also explained why he wants his tattoos to prove to his children that they can achieve anything.

“If I can walk about the streets looking how I look now and lead a normal happy life and still get a job and earn good money then my kids can do whatever they set their mind to,” he said.

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