I recently had the pleasure of having a personal chat with an artist who in my opinion, doesn’t get quite enough of the attention she deserves… the lovely and super talented Tracy Lewis. Tracy shared some things with me about herself, her life and of course, her art. After we were done and getting ready to say goodbye, I asked Tracy if it would be okay if I shared some of her story (and her beautiful paintings) with our readers. She was more than pleased for me to do so.
Tracy grew up in the Los Angeles area of Southern California, and there was never really a starting point for her when it came to her art. Always having had an overactive imagination, as far back as her first memory, Tracy had been drawing. When she was 10 years old, her mother took her to an art class. Her mom would let her use all of her supplies and would teach her what she learned in class every week. Tracy loved all of this, until her mom insisted she learn blind contour drawing. Even though it wasn’t as much fun, Tracy admits that it did help her quite a bit.
Personally, what I love most about Tracy’s work is the color palette that she chooses. She fell in love with watercolors almost 20 years ago and it very quickly became her favorite medium, though she also works with ink, oils and other mediums as well. I asked Tracy to tell me a little bit about her work process and of course that amazing palette that she is quickly becoming known for. You know those artists, where you look at their work and know in a second flat whose it is? That’s happening with Tracy. She has quite a distinctive quality to her paintings.
“I love the transparency and luminosity that you can get with watercolors. I use a pretty limited palette of colors for the most part. I start with a pink, yellow and blue that are all very transparent and staining. With just these three colors, I can create a multitude of hues while keeping my painting unified and my colors clean and pure. I like to let the colors mix on the paper, wet into wet, and layer with glazes to achieve my grays or tones, giving everything a candy coating of Easter-like color. I’m pretty much of a purest in my approach to the medium. Even though at times my work is fairly realistic, I get caught up in the little abstract patterns within a subject. I enjoy setting up little still life’s of favorite things, playing with paradoxical juxtapositions, zeroing in on things to elevate the ordinary to the sublime. I love to paint portraits of beautiful contemporary women that are intense and a little mysterious.”
She now lives in Placerville, Northern California, with her husband, son, and beloved animals. Tracy teaches watercolor classes locally and travels around to teach her workshops. Her home is a tree house view of the world that has made nature an integral part of her life and her art. A collection of curiosities, along with her love of fairy tales, art nouveau and old Hollywood glamour has found their way into her art as well.
Please enjoy some of her hauntingly beautiful paintings.