Taratories Blog

Artists of Rubber City members show

The Artists of Rubber City is a wonderful and eclectic group of artists here in Akron that I love being a part of!  it is always good to be in community with other people who are along the same type of journey as you are.  We are going to be having a members art show at the Box Gallery which starts this week!


The Box Gallery is located in the Summit Artspace in downtown Akron.  The Summit Artspace is an awesome place that holds multiple galleries and several floors of working artist studios.  The Akron Art Walk is also held here on the first Saturday of every month!  The opening reception for the members show will be held on Friday December 1st from 5-8pm.  Art will be for sale and you can also check out the artists studios that are open that night! Come out and support your local artists and maybe you will find yourself a piece of art that will steal your heart.  The show will be up through January 6th.


Located on the third floor at 140 E. Market St. Akron, OH
Hours only apply during exhibitions

Friday: 12-5 pm
Saturday: 12-5 pm
Opening Receptions – first Friday of exhibitions: 5-8 pm
Akron Artwalk – first Saturday of the month: 5-9 pm
Handicap accessible – elevator available
Free parking located behind building on Summit Street

Interview with the Cleveland Library

I had the wonderful opportunity a couple of weeks ago to have an interview with the Cleveland Public Library. They asked me questions like, "When and how did you become interested in art?" and "What is the best piece of advice you've been given?" It was fun to think back into my past and into my art in this way. I've never had an opportunity like this and it was such a gift!  Now I have a little 2 minute mini artist documentary of sorts to pass on to my kids some day!

In the library's gallery there is an interactive digital wall where you can now find photos of my art and also this video.  I'm excited to check it out!  You can too! (library located at 16918 Harvard Ave. Cleveland, OH 44128).

Revival Art Show

After coming home from my artist residency in Wales, I needed a way to show my friends and family what I had been working on and an art show was the perfect way to do that.  On November 26th, Small Business Saturday, I had an art show opening reception at a boutique called Revival here in Akron, Ohio.  Revival is a really cool little shop that sells vintage and new clothing and accessories along with other unique finds.  Every month they have a new artist showcase their work on the walls of the shop.  


Since most of my art up to this point has been commissioned work for people, I have never had a large enough body of my own personal work to display in a gallery.  I have had one or two paintings hanging in a gallery at a time, but this was the first time I had enough pieces to have my own exhibition.  I just loved the idea of having my first show in a boutique!  I love the idea of someone who would just stumble across my art because they are looking for a vintage frock, or come nose to nose with one of the women in my paintings as they sift through a rack of clothes. This was a great experience for me and has prepared for any future exhibitions.

It was so thrilling for me to have some of my models show up for the event and see their faces as they looked at my paintings for the first time.  Here is a quote from Audrey, the girl featured in my painting "In Her Mind's Eye" featured below:  "It is so surreal to look at that face. Your ability to capture a person and put them on canvas amazes me. I'm thankful to be part of your journey to Wales!"

I had a table with examples of 18X24 and 11X14 print sizes, and some fashion illustrations for sale.  

My favorite part of the whole night was having my sweet sister, Erica, with me all the way from North Carolina!  She was my right hand man and did everything from refill people's wine to wrap up art that sold like these two little guys that she is holding.  She was a huge support to me and I couldn't have done it without her!  So thankful for such a great sister!


Another highlight of the evening was having local singer songwriter, Jenny Baird, play music during the entire event.  She really made it feel like a party in there and I enjoyed being next to her all night and hearing her sweet voice. She is so talented!

I was busy the whole night doing fashion sketches of people who came to the show.  I had a line that wouldn't end the entire time!  My hand definitely got a work out for sure!

These two women were awesome with their fun hats and personalities!  The painting I did of them was definitely the most fun to do!  There was such a great crowd in the room and I really enjoyed meeting lots of new people!  For more information on booking me for live fashion sketching at events like this click HERE.

What a great night!  I am so thankful for everyone who came out to support me at my opening.  I feel so loved!  The art will be hung in Revival (822 W. Market Street, Akron) through the end of the month if you weren't able to make it.  There are still originals available for purchase and prints available of all my work.  Email me at taratories@gmail.com for any questions.  

Photos credit: Cara Mancari

Photos credit: Cara Mancari

An Artist Worth Remembering

Last Fall I had the opportunity to go to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City to see an amazing exhibit featuring a large collection of paintings by the famous John Singer Sargent, a leading portrait painter of his generation.  I have always admired his work and it was thrilling to get up close to his paintings and take in all the details. 

As I was viewing this exhibit, a girl in the distance caught my eye.  She seemed to have been transported in time from another era with her dreamy victorian ensemble.  She fit in with the paintings and it even felt as though she could have just stepped out of one.  I wondered what she was thinking.  Who was she?  What was her story?  I felt the need to photograph her to possibly use her in one of my paintings.  

A couple of weeks ago, my friends and I were talking about what a great trip that was to NYC and I thought back to our time in the gallery.  I thought about this girl whom I photographed and started to make a connection.  I had a feeling that this mystery woman was actually an artist that I started following on Instagram a few months ago.  I pulled out these photos from New York, and, sure enough, it was a match!  

Her name is Teresa Oaxaca and she a figurative oil painter and Master of our time.  It makes sense that she was at this particular exhibit because she observes and copies the painting of the Old Masters.  It also made sense that this is the outfit she was wearing because this is her normal attire!  She always wears period clothing which I think is so enchanting!  I was so excited when I realized that it just so happened that my family and I were going to be in Washington D.C. the following week, and Teresa was having an exhibit in Alexandria during our time there!  Her exhibit was entitled "Misfits" which I thought was such an appropriate title.

This piece was a self portrait entitled, "Blue Duchess" and it was right outside the entrance of The Art League Gallery on an easel.  I loved the way that it was a cross between a still life and a portrait.  The painting beckons me to ask what her story is.  The wig, the doll, the mask, the striped stockings, the flowers... all leaving me with questions.

She makes these frames herself and I love the way the colors and whimsy of them really compliment the paintings.  The frames really work together with the paintings and seem to make them complete.

This painting is truly bizarre and I love the composition of it.  The blue is striking, and again, more questions.

Each piece was unique but they all fit together in a cohesive way.  This show was definitely worth taking time to see and I am so glad we did!  So next time you are wandering around a gallery, take note, you may be brushing shoulders with an artist worth remembering.  

See the Brush Strokes

This photo was taken 16 years ago at the Louvre on my honeymoon in Paris.  I remember being in awe of seeing original paintings done by all the masters.  There is nothing like seeing art in person.  It is a totally different experience that you get when you see it in real life, than when looking at it in a book or photograph.  I remember being so shocked to see how small the Mona Lisa was in real life compared to what I imagined it to be, and was surprised to see that Monet's water lilies filled an entire room.  I feel like viewing art in a gallery is becoming a thing of the past. We are living in a time where information is available in our pockets and we don't feel the urgency to get out there and see art with our own eyes!  I want to work hard to always make sure I take time to get up close to art and beauty, and see the brush strokes.