About Tara Riley

Tara’s inspiration comes from life, it starts with a spark and moves to her imagination. While there is recognizable imagery in her paintings, she is not interested in realism there is an element of magic in each of her works as if she is capturing a dream or the spirit of a moment in time. Color and movement are dominant elements in her unique Magic Realism paintings, she calls them Dreamscapes.

Whether starting en Plien air, from a live model, or one of her own photographs Tara pushes i away from realism and into her imagination her paintings evolve. She enjoys working in a variety of media, oil, watercolor and pastel. Tara’s work has been in local, regional and national exhibitions and is in several private collections. Her street piano was painted for a OneBook OneVillage initiative for the Arlington Heights Memorial Library. Tara’s painted piano is now housed in a private museum.

Bachelor of Fine Arts, The School of the Art Institute of Chicago.

Master of Arts in Art Education, North Park University, Chicago Illinois.

Lives and works in Arlington Heights, Illinois.


Artist Association of Elk Grove Village

Arlington Heights Artists Guild

School of the Art Institute of Chicago Alumni Association

Chicago Plein Air Painters