A TATTOO-obsessed Midlander (from Stetchford, Birmingham)is planning an eye-watering world record session under the needle – to cover his ENTIRE BODY in ink.
Determined Matthew Whelan, 31, admits he is risking his health to complete the dangerous 48-hour challenge.
He is already known to friends as Body Art because of his multiple tattoos –and has even legally changed his name to King of Inkland.
Now unemployed Matthew is bidding to break the world endurance record by suffering an excruciating TWO DAYS of tattooing to cover his whole body.
"My body is a temple, and these are the decorations,".
"I know it’s a risk to take on this much tattooing in one go, it’s a huge amount of stress to put on your body."
"There is a heart attack risk, and there’s a possibility of blood poisoning. It’s like any endurance event, there are risks and rewards."
"At the moment I’m interviewing tattoo artists to find someone I can trust for the world record bid next month."
The Brummie first went under the needle at the age of 16. Now he has had so much ink on his body that he will have to undergo laser removal treatments to make room for new artwork.
"I would class myself as only having one tattoo, I have got one body and all the designs are all part of the same piece of art," he said.
And the "King" gets a strong reaction to his extraordinary appearance when he is out and about.
"I see it as extreme art, it provokes people, they see you and they go Whoa!," he said.
"That’s one of the reasons I’m taking on this record, I want to keep pushing boundaries."
"There’s no guarantee that I’ll succeed, the last person to try and do it went into extreme shock after just 17 hours. I’ve had long sessions before, up to 14 hours, but this is unknown territory and obviously very dangerous."
Tattooing may be a lifestyle choice, but the "King" says his love of ink has led to discrimination in the job market.
"Getting work has been a problem, there is a lot of discrimination and most places have a very strict dress code," he said.
"My family have mixed reactions. My dad hates tattoos, but my sister loves them."
"Mostly they don’t really understand why I’ve done this to my body, they think I’ve ruined myself."
"My gran and some of the others say to me, ‘you used to be good looking and now you’ve ruined it."
"I don’t see it that way. As far as I’m concerned, my body is a work of art."
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