By Levan Reid


TAUNTON (CBS)- One woman took the love of the Patriots to a whole new level with an extraordinary portrait of coach Bill Belichick tattooed on her leg. It took 6 1/2 hours to do, and the woman acting as the “canvas” couldn’t be happier. The artwork is part of a continuing series.

“This is a portrait of Bill Belichick. He’s a hero of mine,” said Nicole Gavin showing off her new tattoo.

“I’m just a big fan of tattoos in general,” she said.  That’s an understatement.  Nicole really loves tattoos, the Patriots and people she considers geniuses.

A diehard Patriots fan’s Bill Belichick tattoo. (Photo credit: Nicole Gavin)

Nicole started with a tattoo of Albert Einstein, the genius physicist. So adding the genius Patriots coach was a no brainer. Belichick may not have discovered the theory of relativity, but he definitely created his own theory of win-ability.

“It looks like a painting on a canvas, and that’s hard to do for a tattoo,” she said. But artist Ryan Jones pulled it off. His Taunton shop, Real Art Studios, is part tattoo parlor, part artist studio and part gallery for his work.

He’s been tattooing Nicole for 10 years. “For me it was really about matching the skin tones and capturing details that really show a likeness of his face,” Ryan said.  And the tattoo has a “painterly” quality to it.  A portrait for sure.

Nicole Gavin got a Bill Belichick tattoo on her leg (WBZ-TV)

“I definitely implement a lot of painting techniques into tattooing.  The technology allows us to do totally realistic stuff,” Ryan said.

“I was more surprised that more people don’t have Bill Belichick tattoos on them, to be honest,” Nicole said.  She wants to continue her “genius” series, but hasn’t decided who’s next.

“The leg skin is limited, but there’s probably room for a few more,” she said.

In the meantime, she’ll put her faith in the genius of Belichick. “Whether you like tattoos or you don’t, it’s a beautiful piece of artwork and I get to have it for the rest of my life,” Nicole said.

In addition to his tattoo work, Ryan is getting ready for a solo exhibition of his paintings and illustrations. He’s calling it “Oblivion.”

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