Featured Artist Tamara Poff

Step into the captivating world of artist Tamara Poff, whose paintings of women evoke a symphony of emotions. See more of her portfolio by visiting her website.


portrait of a woman with chicken and egg

“Which Came First?” oil, 24″ x 24″


I am my father’s daughter. My earliest memories include his encouragement of my interest in drawing. Although he was not an artist, he was a man of creative wit, enlightened by surviving in a house full of women.


Figurative painting of a woman with parasol

“Rose” oil, 48″ x 24″


In my turbulent teen years, I happened to be an (almost) competent flutist. During one of my adolescent meltdowns, I remember he insisted I take up my flute and play right then and there to calm me down.


Figurative painting off a woman relaxing

“Time Machine” oil, 40″ x 30″


Despite my resistance, I complied to later appreciate that moment as the dawning of understanding art as an antidote to chaos—an elevation of the spirit. These values drive me to create today.


Figurative painting expressing two sides of a personality

“Two Sides to Keryn” oil, 36″ x 48″


After graduating in Art Education at Michigan State University in 1979, single parenting and economic factors forced me into the financial services industry for many decades. Although sporadically, I continued my art practice in those workaholic years, returning to post-graduate studies at Kendall College of Art and Design in 2000.


portrait of two young sisters

“Soul Sisters” oil, 36″ x 24″


There was never a time when I wasn’t searching to find a way back to a full-time focus on my painting. I consider myself re-emerging in 2021 now that I can finally satisfy that quest.


Figurative painting of two woman in classic robes

“For Veena” oil, 48″ x 36″


Oil paint is my medium of choice because of its lush and forgiving nature, allowing me to build toward an idea a little more slowly than other art materials. I like taking advantage of its multi-layering qualities to create depth.


Figurative of a woman and insect

“Dish” oil, 20″ x 20″


My compositions form from a curiosity for language and its relationship to what’s inside the hearts and minds of the people I paint. Humans as subjects are, therefore, endlessly intriguing to me. I begin with words, phrases, quotes, or stories and then search for the connecting imagery. In this process, the title frequently appears before the painting.


Figurative painting of a woman gesturing No

“Refuse” oil, 22″ x 22″


My deep concern for social justice and the feminist outrage stirred by years of fighting my way upward in a male-dominated business world creeps into my work, sometimes from a tongue-in-cheek point of view. Hence the appearance of a cockroach, a woman mired in refuse, the irony juxtaposing victims of past and present, etc.


Figurative painting of an African American woman

“Khalilah” oil, 48″ x 24″


Strong women emerge in narrative environments as I paint. With these elements, I hope to raise questions in the viewer and maybe even answer a few along the way.


Tamara Poff invites you to follow her on Facebook and Instagram.



Speak Your Mind