New Orleans-based artist Craig Tracy is considered a trendsetter in the art of body painting. He spends hour painstakingly painting his subjects’ bodies with water-based paint, before taking photos of them in unique positions.
The first time we featured Craig Tracy on Oddity Central, was in January 2010, right after he created a jaw-dropping image of a tiger from the contorted bodies of several models. It was one of his most amazing works, but the American artist now has an entire collection of mind-blowing images painted on human bodies. Born and raised in New Orleans, Tracy always knew he was going to be an artist, in fact everyone else knew it as well. “There was never any question regarding my being or becoming a professional artist. It was always just obvious and understood,” he says. Craig’s parents, whom he describes as “working class hippies”, nurtured his creative development and gave him the freedom to mature as an absolute individual. At 15, he received his first airbrush, as a gift from his parents, and just a year later, working as an airbrush artist in a local shopping mall, he had already learned to draw almost anything on a vast array of surfaces. After graduating from The Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale, the young artist became an illustrator for advertising agencies and editorial publishing houses, and hated it. After six years, he left his career as an illustrator behind and started painting “murals, t-shirt designs and just about anything and everything possible”.