Maryland Tattoos (Beat Duke Edition)

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To commemorate my Maryland Terrapin’s victory over Duke in their final matchup ever in the ACC Tournament, here are a few tattoos inspired by the Terrapins and the Great State of Maryland

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And, just because I love posting this photo (and this would make an awesome portrait tattoo)

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Celebrity Tattoo of the Day (Top Chef Championship Edition): Kristen Kish

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Outside of the music industry, there are few careers (outside of tattoo artists) where tattoos are more prevalent and as widely accept as in the food service industry, especially among chefs.   Being a quality chef is much more about the art of preparing food than just the basic steps of following a recipe.

KKish_Pic07   The artistic nature of food preparing taps into the artistic nature of its practitioners, the chefs.  So the connection with an appreciation of other artistic forms of expression, especially body art, is to be expected.  One only needs to look at a competition show like “Top Chef”, where the two finalists both possess significant amounts of impressive body art.

KKish_Pic02    In Season 10 of “Top Chef”, Boston-based (and Korean-born) chef and model, Kristen Kish battled it out with runner-up, Brooke Williamson (who will be featured later), to take home the coveted title of ‘top chef’.

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Kristen took the long road to victory in this season’s competition.  After starting off the season strongly, including receiving praise from Emeril Lagasse, Kristen ran into trouble during the ‘Restaurant Wars’ competition in Week 10 and was eliminated from the competition

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Kristen’s quest was not yet ended.  During Season 9, the producers had introduced a new segment called “Top Chef:  Last Chance Kitchen”, which is a companion web series where eliminated finalists compete in a sort of ‘survivor series’ against one another for a chance to return to the main competition.  Kristen succeeded in that endeavor and returned for the finale, where she defeated Brooke Williamson (a good friend who is frequently photographed with Kristen).

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Throughout the competition, Kristen’s tattoos on her forearms were prominently visible and the subject of curiosity for those who want to know the stories behind them.

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   Entering the competition, Kristen already had 6 ink designs on her body (Bostonian Magazine.com).  They are:

  • A butter knife
  • A music note
  • A spoon
  • Her dad’s sailboat number
  • “I love you” in her mom’s handwriting
  • Her name in Korean.

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Late in the competition, she felt compelled to add to her collection of body art with a series of floral herb designs on her outer forearm.  Included are a chive blossom, parsley, chervil, and tarragon.  Kristen proudly showed the process of getting inked on her Twitter page and enjoys displaying the finished product (which is an impressive, detailed, captivating tattoo).

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You can follow Kristen on Twitter at:  https://twitter.com/KristenLKish

(Thanks to Bostonian Magazine for the list of her tattoos and up close photo of her most recent tattoo:  http://www.bostonmagazine.com/restaurants/blog/2013/02/01/kristen-kish-survives-chance-kitchen-tattoos/)

Celebrity Tattoo of the Day (Sexy Aussie Edition): Natalie Imbruglia

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Let’s take a journey aboard the Wayback Machine.  It will take us back to the heady days of early 1998 when an unprecented era of ‘one-hit wonders’ was in full swing.  Running from the summer of 1997 through the dawn of the new millennium, we are graced so many groups and individuals who flashed brightly for a moment and then dropped off the radar.  This list included such luminaries as Mark Morrison, OMC, Semisonic, Next, Chumbawumba, Lou Bega, Shawn Mullins, and Lit.  Those artists all had incredibly popular singles (“Return of the Mack” or “Mambo # 5”, anybody?) that either reached the top of the charts or made a lot of noise for an extended period of time on the radio…. and then dropped off the radar

N_Imbruglia_Pic05     One who could easily be grouped in with that list is Aussie songstress, Natalie Imbruglia.  In the early days of 1998 (on through the summer), you could not be on any ‘top hits’ music station for longer than 30 minutes without hearing the unmistakable intro of her hit “Torn”.

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Natalie is an interesting case study for this list because “Torn”, which is a cover of a song by L.A. alt-rock group Ednaswap, did not actually hit very high on the charts in the U.S. (reaching only #42 on the Hot 100).  However, the enormous worldwide popularity of Imbruglia’s cover (it cracked the Top 5, including #1 twice, in 10 other countries with a reputable music presence) ensured that American audiences would hear it often.  However, Natalie did not strike gold again, despite several modestly successful albums.

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Before Natalie became a household name in the States with “Torn”, she had already established herself on the uber-popular Australian soap opera, “Neighbours”.  Starring on “Neighbours” is basically a rite of passage for any Australian celebrity, as Delta Goodrem, Alan Dale, and Kylie Minogue all spent time on that show.  The attention brought by her performance on “Neighbours” got her a record deal, which lead the her debut album “Left of the Middle” and, of course, its hit, “Torn”.

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After the success of “Torn” faded, Natalie continued to record albums such as “White Lillies Island” and “Come to Life”.  She also starred alongside Rowan Atkinson (aka “Mr. Bean”) in the spy spoof, “Johnny English”.  Musical talent does run in the family as her younger sister, Laura Imbruglia, is building an indie rock career of her own.

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One thing noticed very early on in her career, was Natalie’s love of body art.  From all the way back in her “Left of the Middle” days, she was frequently photographed where the design of the Chinese word for ‘courage’ was visible on top of her left foot (see above).  Whenever Natalie has worn a backless dress, her lower back showed a pretty sanskrit ‘Ohm” symbol

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Finally, a petite design is visible whenver Natalie puts her hair up or goes with a pixie haircut.  This design is also a sanskrit that reads ‘shreya’, which is a Hindi word meaning ‘lucky’ or auspicious.

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If you want to learn more about the woman who was determined to be the 6th most naturally beautiful, according to a 2004 survey of beauty experts, you can visit her official website:  http://www.natalieimbruglia.com/

You can also follow her on Twitter at:  https://twitter.com/natimbruglia

Celebrity Tattoo of the Day: Norah Jones

NorahJ_Pic02   Norah Jones is another one of those celebrities who really needs no introduction.  She burst onto the scene in 2002 with her multiple Grammy-winning debut album, “Come Away With Me”, and struck a chord with new audiences in a surprisingly comedic and self-deprecating cameo in the 2012 comedy hit, “Ted”.

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   Beginning with “Come Away With Me”, Norah firmly established herself in the airy, light rock genre.  Her easy, relaxing melodies had an enormous appeal when she debuted, resulting in winning a stunning 7 Grammy Awards that year! (Her ‘Album of the Year’ award was considered something of an upset, as she was going up against Bruce Springsteen’s therapeutic post-9/11 album, “The Rising”).

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   While Norah has not managed to achieve the same supernova success of “Come Away With Me” (and, to be honest, it’s not reasonable to think that anyone could), she has continued to release successful albums, have one well-attended concert tour after another, and even add another 4 Grammy Awards to her collection.

    Another fascinating (and well-documented) part of Norah Jones’ life is that she is the daughter of legendary Indian sitar player, Ravi Shankar (she chose to take her mother’s, Sue Jones, last name)

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   One thing that fans noticed in “Ted” is that Norah does sport some body art.  As of right now, I know of two tattoo designs she has.  Her first tattoo is a blazing sun design she got on her lower back.  She got this done along with her half-sister, sitar player Anoushka Shankar.  So, there is an undeniable special meaning between sisters

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   Her second tattoo, and the one noticeable in “Ted”, is a sanskrit inscription with an ‘all-seeing’ eye illustration below her right wrist.  These photos show it up close and also show it as she performs

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You can find out more about Norah on her official website:  http://www2.norahjones.com/

And, you can follow her on Twitter at:  https://twitter.com/NorahJones