"Purple Haze" was designed by Debbie Tracey. Each scarf is original. They are made from sections of her paintings.
Size: 80" L, 29" W
Special care instructions: None
About the Artist: Many of us look back on the places where we grew up with fondness and nostalgia, but acrylic and mixed media painter Debbie Tracey takes this a step further, drawing on her childhood memories as a source of inspiration for her bright, colorful abstracts. Tracey was born in San Francisco but moved to Hawaii when she was eight years old. She spent most of her youth on the south shore of Kauai, enjoying the vibrant beauty of the island and playing on the beach with her friends. She was a member of a local yacht club and had the opportunity to participate in athletics from playing tennis to sailing to swimming and bodysurfing.
Naturally, being exposed to all of the unique and lively terrains of Kauai inspired Tracey, who always had a creative inclination, to express the beauty around her through art. As she was growing up, she took a variety of classes in different visual art forms, including pottery, stained glass, and watercolor. In college, Tracey continued taking art classes and eventually earned a degree in fine arts from Pacific University in Oregon. Later, she returned to school and completed a MA in education. She was always looking to expand her artistic skill through college classes and workshops, but it wasn’t until her retirement that she finally had the time to really delve into doing what she loved: painting.
Even though her studio is on the Puget Sound in Olympia, Washington, Tracey finds inspiration in her island upbringing. The vibrancy of island life works its way into each of her abstracts. “My joy comes from bold color!” Tracey explains. “I also love the fluid movement of my work, which becomes a ‘dance’ with my creative soul.” This fluidity comes from her loose painting process, which involves pouring paint onto the canvas, moving and sculpting it with a pallet knife, and adding layers. Her combined use of color and texture creates a unique flow that evokes the natural beauty of Kauai.
While she doesn’t always start with a particular subject in mind, many of Tracey’s paintings morph into abstract depictions of nature. “Each painting is an experiment with color and movement, which creates a unique and dynamic piece,” she says. “I usually start with choosing colors and go from there, mixing and moving them around the canvas. I work with my canvas laying flat on a table so I can view it from many angles. The painting evolves with new colors or layers added to the canvas.”
Some of Tracey’s major artistic influences include Bette Ridgway and Caliche and Pao. She notes that “their color pallets greatly influenced my choices of color. Bright, wild, and exciting!” Viewers and collectors often comment that Tracey’s lively abstracts bring a smile to their faces and joy to their homes. Many have felt refreshed by the presence of island life and warmth in her paintings.
Tracey is a member of The Artists’ Gallery in Olympia and shows her work at Museum Contempo in Shelton, WA, Art At The Cave in Vancouver, Wa, The Valley Athletic Club in Tumwater, Wa, and Perks Of Art in Hillsboro, OR. She is a member of the Mosaic Arts Alliance, Society of Washington Artists, and Oregon Society of Artists.
Tracey’s love of water sports from her childhood has stayed with her into retirement. When she isn’t painting, Tracey is often out kayaking on the Puget Sound and other bodies of water. She also enjoys gardening, reading, and traveling. She has spent time in Europe, absorbing the incredible scenery and art of countries like Italy and Greece. Tracey feels that her mission as an artist is “to bring joy and happy memories to those that view my work.” She does this successfully by sharing her own memories of Kauai through her bold and fearless use of color.
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