***Flygirl Fridays***

Earlier this year I had the opportunity to take a course called "Flying Lessons" given by a very talented artist - Kelly Rae Roberts. It was an excellent course that covered such topics as letting go of yours fears, going after your true passion, and many other things. One of the best things about the course was, I got meet and learn about a lot of talented artists, all in on different paths, but all working towards making their dreams come true and learning to take flight. Flygirl Fridays is all about these wonderfully talented people and a little bit about them, so you can get to know them as well!

Please join me in welcoming
Tracy Yarbrough from Chick Pea Studio!

Please introduce yourself, who are you and what do you do?
My name is Tracy Yarbrough. I am an artist, wife and mom. I grew up as an Air Force brat and have lived everywhere from Utah to Australia. I have known that art was my "thing" from an early age. My first grade teacher was a huge influence on me. She always had me illustrating stories, writing books, and putting on puppet shows with puppets that I made. First grade is also when I won my first art award! I never had an art class until middle school, but I created art and made all sorts of things at home. In high school, I continued taking art classes, but then got into photography for a while, taking photos for the school yearbook. As I was getting ready for college I knew I wanted to study art. I started with Graphic Design, but it was not a good fit for me. I took lots of art classes: drawing, art history, painting, sculpture, jewelry, clay, and silkscreen...but never focused on one area. I graduated with a degree in Art Education and was lucky enough to find a teaching job right away. I taught elementary school art for 10 years. During that time, I dabbled in painted floor cloths, painted furniture, custom murals and painting on canvas. After my oldest daughter was born, my heart just wasn't into teaching anymore. I wanted to be home with her enjoying every minute. I started painting again when she was about 2 years old and it felt so good to do art that was just for me. I created art sporadically until my youngest daughter was born. Then in January of 2011, I started to get more serious about my art. I went to a mixed media/collage workshop by a local artist and it inspired me to try new things and not worry about if everyone would like it or not. From that point on I have grown so much as an artist and feel so much more confident. I paint with acrylics on canvas and sometimes recycled wood. If the mood strikes me, I may add some collage to my artwork.
P.S. The name "Chickpea Studio" originated from when my first daughter was a baby. We called her "chickpea". She and her sister have their own art space in my studio and will create alongside of me. So when I was trying to decide on what to name my business, it seemed perfect.

What is something that you really love, and why?
Besides my family and diet coke? I love all kinds of art, I always have. I love the beach because the smell of the salty water and sound of the crashing waves are instantly calming to me.

What would your dream project be?
To have an art studio outside of the house and having my own little gallery with local artwork.

What’s the best piece of advice that you’ve ever received?
To make some sort of art every day to stay creative. It really works. Ideas come easier to me when I paint or draw every day. Even just for 5 minutes or with the kids.

Where does you inspiration come from?
A lot of my inspiration comes from children's art. Kids are so free and expressive with their art. They use any color they want in any combination. They are not scared to play with new materials and try new things.

What do you think is the biggest thing holding you back?
Being somewhat of an introvert, I am sometimes afraid to approach people about my artwork (like shops, galleries, etc.)

What change do you think would most help your business grow?
Not spending so much time on Facebook and Pinterest!! No really, I am applying to some local juried art shows because I feel that is the next step for me at this point.

What’s the biggest thing that you took with you from Flying Lessons?
I learned that to be successful, you cannot sit and wait for people to find you, it takes a lot of work and effort.