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On Your Birthday

Dear Tracy,

You always prided yourself on how you embodied your astrological sign… a true Leo! It was always inspiring to be with you, as you approached everything with determination and zest. Happy birthday to what would be, your 28th.

I remember one of your birthdays we spent together in Bali, Indonesia… we found Bingin ‘The Impossible’ Beach where we set up our den-like ‘compound’  in a slat-board room with mosquito netting tied above the beds and the ocean crashing into a heavily reefed shoreline just beyond our open window. It had been such an intensely steep and sweaty hike down the twisting stairs cut into the rocky cliff-face that once we set our gear down in the sand it was decided that we would not be leaving.

As it turns out, we had found another way to position ourselves somewhere in nowhere; Bingin was a place where everyone else who had trekked into this beautiful crack in the earth’s surface were salty weather-worn surfers with the intent of tackling waves for months at a time beyond the reef. So, in having a mutual history of black eyes and mild concussions from the last time we attempted surfing together in Costa Rica, we took advantage of our location in the best way we knew how, which was making a complete inventory of the food available to us at the little wooden ‘hotel’ and then throughly enjoying our next dining experience.

It was August 11th and you were turning 25. And so we lived it up! We sat in little wobbly plastic chairs in the sand and ordered all of our most favorite edibles- mango smoothies, grilled seafood, and whatever else Louisa had written on that small little whiteboard.  And so the sky darkened and we ate at this little table in the sand with a piece of moon hanging from the sky.  We sat there for hours; eating and seeing and talking… about whatever came to our heads… the ocean, traveling, humans, our new obsession with astrology, our forgotten towels, motorcycles, the internet, whether soul-mates exist, other yummy things we had eaten lately, the monkeys we saw earlier, where could I teach you to drive manual, how many crazy rituals the Balinese have, what time would be best to photograph under the water, the stars on this side of the planet. The salty ocean mist clung to our hair and there we were, a Leo Lion and a Cancer Crab in the middle of this infinite universe and it will always be a beautiful tangible thing, engraved forever on a few million neurons in my brain and in all of my heart.

Tracy, wherever you are now in this incomprehensible universe, you should know that we are celebrating your life the best ways we know how and keeping close to our hearts every single day that we have shared with you.

Next week on August 15th, Evander will be turning 4 years old, and only you could have made such a beautiful, healthy and strong little Leo Lion. He is forever curious and a fellow master of the light and den-like spaces. We love and miss you so much Tracy.

Happy birthday.

Your sis,


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June 5, 2016 - 10:55 am

Andrea - Dear Roxanne, still returning from time to time to Tracys page. It still makes me so sad. She was so gifted.

Love from Switzerland.
A photographer

A Deep Loss

As many of you know, Tracy Turpen passed away on January 15, 2012. On March 7, 2012 her beloved fiance and fellow photographer Tyler Stout also passed. It has been a devastating loss to both of our families to feel the vacancy of such incredible and loving spirits that shined so brightly in this world.  As time moves forward, we plan to keep both the website and blog active so their timeless images may continue to leave a mark of beauty within our world. We thank all of you, including those in the extended photographic community, for the kind words and responses that have flowed in over the past several months.

With gratitude~ Roxanne, her sister


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August 11, 2017 - 7:57 am

Whitney Gray - I just had to stop a moment and tell you how much I still enjoy Tracy’s photography- a friend is in Bali and it made me think of her pictures. Her work really is incredible and I’m thankful you have left her website up so it can be enjoyed. What a loss!!