- Posted June 6, 2014 by
Los Angeles, California
Putting A Baroness Bang Into Pop Art: Elissa Tracy, Icon In the Making
She’s grown a Facebook following to over 80K (in less than year), she’s given pop-art a whole new level of “bang” and her “Blonde Baroness” alter ego is painting her into a real-life icon. But that’s just how Elissa Tracy rolls, in life and in art: colorful and bold.
Her signature style exudes a passion and purpose with paint that surpasses the Warhol level of impact into an art genre of her own. A genre that splits into her own twist of sub styles; pop icon portraits, abstract expressionism, free style street art and comic book heroes with rebellious charm. Whatever the style or subject, Elissa Tracy has mastered the art of thick acrylic paints and deep, potent colors giving vibrant flair to the familiar and an allure to the abstract. In other words, she has the “it factor” of paint that impacts people far beyond the ‘art world’, where you don’t have to know a lot about art to know something good when you see it.
Perhaps even more interesting, is how the artist behind the art explains having to overcome her fear of paint to become the fearless painter she is today. “I’ve always known I had a talent for drawing and composition from a young age and I immediately eased into exploring those areas, especially photography. But as a person, I’m both introverted and intense, so I was terrified of expressing myself with paint – it was just too raw and real for me, basically like standing in a room completely naked and baring your soul for the world to see,” Elissa explains.
In fact, Elissa had already been down a whole different path of running her own design business - when her fate with paint intervened. She had made the rare exception of painting a surprise gift for a friend and rather than a light bulb moment, she had a lightning strike realization during the process. “It was like I woke up that day to the truth of who I was. I ditched my business and became an artist, all the way in and no turning back.”
Whether it’s art imitating life or life imitating art, Elissa’s boldness in paint and persona has grown hand in hand. It’s also no mistake that “brass, black sheep” pop-culture icons have inspired her entire series of portraits – Warhol, Hendrix, Sinatra, Marilyn and even a self-portait of her own. “I’m inspired most by people who are passionate about something enough that their need to express themselves is bigger than their fear of rejection or controversy. Especially people like Andy Warhol, Jimmy Hendrix and Marilyn Monroe who were all very shy and reserved in their personal lives, but so driven by their artistic fire that they became icons even bigger than themselves,” Elissa says.
Perhaps this also is what inspired Elissa to bring her own art to life and become a pop-culture icon in her own rite. What started with her interest in painting iconic characters from the 80’s GI Joe series; she recognized her striking resemblance to the original Brunette Baroness character and attended Comic Con that year in full Baroness get-up. But being a natural blonde, Elissa was immediately outed by the hard core G.I. Joe fans for not staying “true to the comic” and she was coined as the "Blonde Baroness” rule breaker. Rather than shamed into compliance, Elissa embraced the controversy and her rebellious “Blonde Baroness” alter ego stuck. Not only has the “Blonde Baroness” evolved to become a welcomed part of the Comic Con scene with a bigger following each year, Pit Viper studios, (a top production studio), has custom designed her entire “Blonde Baroness” gear. She also explains how her iconic self has inspired an entire series of self-portraits allowing her to express herself as an artist while exploring more of her own inner identity. “Dressing as the strong Baroness character, and then painting a self-portrait as her, is like exposing the raw image of certain facets of my own self on canvas and putting it out there for all to see,” she reveals.
With her mass social media following, comicon celebrity status and constant inquiries about her art, it’s no surprise that Elissa is getting set for a debut show that will blast her onto the map. Although her ultimate dream is like most artists hoping to leave their immortal stamp on the world long after they’re gone, Elissa is also gratefully aware that she is already living her dream, colorful and bold.
To find out more about Elissa Tracy and her work go to the following link: