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Art & Life with Traci Sally,

Today we’d like to introduce you to Traci Sally, .

Traci, , please kick things off for us by telling us about yourself and your journey so far.
I grew up outside the suburbs of Philadelphia and spent my youth taking as many art classes as I possibly could. I finally convinced my parents to let me attend art college for design. I ended up studying design, illustration and printmaking at Tyler School of Art. After college I started working as a graphic designer. I enjoyed getting to put my creativity to work but sitting at my desk with a mouse started to feel restraining for me as an artist. The corporate world had been looking lucrative but I felt my voice as an artist was in the background. I went back to spending my free time drawing and painting. Slowly, I built on online shop and filled a few orders then moving on to approaching stores who carried my work. Around that same time I made another move, literally across the country to San Diego! I was lucky enough to get a position with a publisher working as a designer who also allowed me to have a flexible schedule. I began fervently creating artwork and exploring my new home. Needless to say I fell in with the culture and my surroundings which started showing up in my art. Slowly a few stores began to carry my prints, greeting cards and even had me do wall art for them. 5 years in and I know work for myself full time as an artist and illustrator. I think this has a lot to with the saying “your vibe attracts your tribe” I found mine here!

Can you give our readers some background on your art?
I’m largely inspired by my surroundings and people. I live in Carlsbad so I spend a lot of my time at the beach and stopping along spots on the 101. My favorite thing to do is sit with a sketchbook or my iPad at coffee shops and people watch. I take in the culture of my area. It shows up in the style of my portrait artwork.
My other pastime is taking long drives, especially to the desert. I’ve always been inspired by its majestic scenery but it was amplified since moving here. For me, visiting places like Anza Borrego is slightly spiritual. My favorite memory is sitting in the desert wildflowers after last years super bloom right at dusk and watching the colors of the mountains change as the sun set. Moments like that show up later in my work so I feel like I’m sharing that with the viewer. I want them to feel the magic I felt in that moment.

What responsibility, if any, do you think artists have to use their art to help alleviate problems faced by others? Has your art been affected by issues you’ve concerned about?
I tend to draw strong women and incorporate symbols of strength in my work. I believe women should empower themselves as well as others. I find I get a lot of requests and projects from local female business owners. I love this because I feel like we’re helping each other and fostering growth and support that in turn results in success. It’s a community and we’re in it together. There’s a distinct feel in the air that as a woman anything is possible. If I can convey that in my work or help inspire another to feel that I’ve done my job as an artist.

What’s the best way for someone to check out your work and provide support?
I sell most of my work online via my Etsy shop Traci Sally Designs , pop-up shops or through commission requests via Instagram @tracisallydesigns
People can feel free to reach out and DM for inquiries about work, purchasing, collars, etc

I’m also lucky enough to be carried in boutiques in Encinitas, Leucadia, Ocean Beach and Oceanside.

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