Jane Wilkes, 57, is a government employee with a passion for gothic-style body art.
She said she started adopting the edgy, dark look back in the 1980s and has never looked back – despite sometimes being insulted by strangers who call her a “vampire” or “dead”.
She describes herself as an “elder goth”, which she says are people who have adopted the unique style for years.
“To me, an elder goth is part of a community of people that were there, dressing this way since back in the day,” she said.
“You get a lot of people saying you can’t be a goth if you don’t wear this brand or that brand, but I think I can be my own goth, and do what I like.
“Once you get to a certain age, the truth is that you really don’t care what people think, and while I have dealt with lots of abuse over the years, nowadays I get much more of a positive reaction with people telling me they want to be like me when they’re older.
“I was drawn to how it had this blend of influences – from literature and horror to art and the Victorian era – but with a punk edge.
“You get all these Victorian-style pieces and intricate jewellery, then add in punky fishnets and PVC.”
Jane, who has been married to her husband Jonathan for 21 years and lives in Brighton, also survived breast cancer and had part of her right breast removed.
She now describes herself as a mentor to youngsters who also embrace alternative fashion.
She explained: “I get a lot of the younger goths following me, which I think is great,’ she said. ‘I hope I can, in a way, be a mentor to them.
“People stop me so much in the street these days to talk about my look that I’ve even had little cards made up, so they know where to find me on social media if they want to see more.
“Life, to me is about helping people and influencing them to be more positive. You have to be who you are.
“It’s really important to take care of yourself and your body, and keep it healthy – but by all means, paint, decorate and pierce it too.”