We had the good fortune of connecting with Craig Tracy and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Craig, what was your thought process behind starting your own business?
As an artist with a background in entrepreneurship, I felt that I had a better chance representing myself via a gallery rather than hoping or expecting others to do so. I also wasn’t excited about giving up half of the retail selling price to a gallery as is the standard within the gallery industry.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
Becoming a full time Fine Art Bodypainting Artist was the dream and I was fortunate enough to not only formulate that concept as my career goal but I was able to then successfully realize the dream into my reality. Opening my gallery in New Orleans was a giant leap of faith because it is the First Ever gallery dedicated exclusively to fine art Bodypainter images. It was an unproven concept in that regard. I had considerable faith in the work and I simply had to try to make it work regardless of risk and the odds of failure. I simply had to make it happen. My gallery opened its doors in the New Orleans French Quarter in February of 2006 and it has continued to thrive and keep thousands smiling and engaged. There have been ups and downs but the ups have by far out weighed the down times. When the US or global economy is weak, sales in the art world can really take it hard. I do my best to overcome those periods with extra hard work, extra creative thinking and proactive dynamic marketing. I’ve established a 5000 + email list for monthly newsletters and I’ve had good success with social media visibility and engagement, I always try to be approachable with fans and collectors and give them whatever extra attention that I can to make the moments that we are together or communicating memorable and meaningful.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
New Orleans is AMAZING. I live and have my gallery right in the heart of the French Quarter. Everything is within walking distance or a quick ride away. These is just so much unique culture here and it always makes it easy to show visitors a great time. The abundance of exceptional food and dynamic live music is second to none. We also have architecture and history here that by american standards can not be rivaled. My favorite quality about New Orleans has to be it’s funkiness. We are funky and you can take that any way you like. Conventional ways are not our ways and we love Love LOVE to have a great time. One of our most signifiant moths is, “Let the good times roll.”
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
My shoutout goes to my collectors. Without those that collect my work, I would literally not be able to create as I do.