Student Stories: Tracy Waite

This is an occasional series I’m calling Student Stories! 

I felt it was high time I celebrated and shared the work of some of the artists who have interacted with my work in some way over the years as part of their art journey. Some have taken a course {or courses}, some have been following the blog or reading Artnotes for years, or a combination of these.

These short stories are about where their work and my work met, and what they experienced after that. Please go and check out the links of these artists and like, follow, and support them however you wish! A rising tide lifts all boats, and all that. 🙂

This week’s artist: Tracy Waite

Tracy Waite

I first came across Tara`s courses on Pinterest. I am an avid fan of Pinterest, like most, and I had decided that I would bring some acrylics with me on our second trip around Australia, in our caravan. (There is just too much inspiration out there not to get back into painting, I decided, after our first lap around.)

I am self- taught, after finding a book in the local library, of the French Impressionists, almost 18 years ago. After spending most of my weekend drooling over the colour and brushstrokes and scenes that I felt I could get lost in, I decided that I had to try and learn to paint.

I was managing two local newspapers at the time, and we used visual artists to make mock-ups of advertisements which would be pitched to prospective clients to secure their advertising.

I was able to go to our local Jacksons Art store and buy supplies at wholesale prices, through work, so needless to say I was able to buy the best supplies and bought loads to get me started, and I still have so many supplies that I bought back then… so lucky to have had that opportunity!

Tracy Waite

I spent most weekends in my sunroom/ studio trying everything I could get my hands on. Oils and pastels became my two loves, very quickly.

I also discovered the Australian Impressionists and they became my Art Heroes. To me, Arthur Streeton will never be surpassed as the greatest Australian painter of all time, closely followed by Charles Condor and John Russell.

I learnt so much from two books and a DVD by modern day Australian Impressionist Colley Whisson. I spent hours practicing the exercises and replaying them over and over. I still use everything I learned from them, today. This was where my love of landscape painting started!

I found Tara`s 7 Day Series Challenge on Pinterest, and info on her courses. I decided to start painting and give it a go. I had not really done much for about 15 years due to life getting in the way! (Would you believe the challenge is running again, as I write this and I am doing it for about the fourth time, I think?)

Tracy Waite 7 days series challenge

The challenge was the rekindling of the most wonderful love affair with art and making. It also made such a difference to my confidence, on both a personal level and now a professional level.

Possibly the biggest turning point for me was being granted access to Tara’s private Facebook group, for all her students {Tara: and Artnote subscribers :)}… the most amazingly supportive, creative and kind bunch of human beings, ever to belong to one group.

I remember, that first time I pushed the post button, which took me about two days, haha! I was terrified, completely out of my comfort zone (like not in my wildest dreams type stuff!). The response my crappy little painting got was so kind and supportive that within a week I was painting so I had something to post!

Since then, Tara’s 7 day series and 21 Days in my Art World challenges have become staples, throughout the year. They have been the catalyst for small series I have painted, most of which have been sold. They remind me to focus and give myself permission to just try something and see where it leads.

Strange but not strange, that some of my favourite work has come from these challenges. My style has evolved and become recognisable since I have taken part in the 7 day series challenge, for sure.

Since connecting with Tara`s courses and the other “Sparks”, in the Facebook group, some wonderful things have happened.

I got invited to be a founding Artist of Outback Creative, an online Australian Gallery focussed on the Art and Artists of Outback Australia. This invitation was extended after one of the Founders and Director saw my series of mostly Native Bunches, of flowers, also one of my challenge series.

Tracy Waite

I have had two very successful Art Shows selling 38 works, in 2018 and securing 2 commissions. I did my third, in November, last year. I also painted a special collection for a designer home retail store, in 2018 and I continue to send work there. I had a small show there in November, last year, also.

My most exciting accomplishment, last year, was being asked to submit 10 works to a gallery I love, in Kununurra, Western Australia, my home state, and five sold in the first three weeks and I received a commission request also.

I am having a little love affair with inks, now. I think of inks and oils as my Yin and Yang medias. They are so opposite in so many ways yet seem to provide a balance for me which I cant quite put my finger on?

Tracy Waite

If you would like to see what I am getting up to these days, you can visit my page on Instagram @tracywaitecreative or my website at