Tara Murino-Brault was born and raised in Chicago. She received her BFA in Graphic Design at The University of Illinois at Chicago and her MFA in printmaking at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design. Currently, she is an artist and educator who resides in the Portland Oregon area. She currently teaches a variety of classes at Portland Community College and is mom to a five-year-old named Gus. Her favorite mediums are all forms of printmaking, carving, and painting in gouache and acrylic. Her favorite dessert is cupcakes. Since the beginning, symbolism has been a prominent theme in my work. Images such as trees, women, animals, and religious icons communicate ideas about cultural power and powerlessness, spiritualism, mortality, and rebirth. I enjoy playing with opposing elements such as light and dark, reason and folly, or good and evil, and the interdependence of each to define the other. With iconic etchings, relief prints, collagraphs and paintings, I create an illustrative approach to communicate at a deeper level and to engage people in a larger narrative beyond the image. Printmaking is my main medium, and I tend towards the practices of both relief and intaglio printmaking. Both processes allow me to produce graphic images with different emphases, one vibrant in layered color, and the other rich with velvety blacks. I enjoy the tactile quality of making prints as well, and find that the physical nature of the process creates an extra layer of definition and meaning in each print.