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Introducing Tara Kesner

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Photography by Paul Versluis

Originally published in Leawood Lifestyle

Tara Kesner is a local artist and active mother and wife who lives in Leawood with her three young daughters and husband, Carmen. She is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame and was heavily involved in the performing arts both during childhood and college. She had a passion for art at an early age, but pragmatism led her to a risk consulting job with a “Big 4” accounting firm. She worked in the audit environment for many years in both Chicago and Kansas City. Along the way she realized that the work wasn’t enough. 

"I was producing nothing more than a report -- words,” Kesner says. “I missed producing something tangible. I missed having creativity in my life. Though I was working for a really wonderful company, I just felt somewhat empty."

She had a career change and entered the world of marketing. She became a marketing strategist and creative director, managing the marketing division for a large private company. She was able to leverage her visual skills in graphic design, advertising and branding. She felt fulfilled.  

"I then left the workforce to be a full-time mother,” Kesner explains. “My children have been my entire world now for six years. But my youngest was entering preschool, and I was staring down the inevitability of having a quiet, empty house several days a week. I realized I needed a role, an outlet, a passion to fill the void that I knew would be left in their absence. I woke up one day covered in paint and realized I’d found my true love. I have always surrounded myself with art and beauty, and I’ve finally realized that I can contribute to the art world and not just admire it."

She took up painting, leveraging her visual background and flair for interior design. She is inspired by her family, by vibrant color, movement, dance and energy.  She hopes, in turn, to inspire her daughters and others to pursue happiness in their work.

"My art is inspired by my three daughters and my daily life. My daughters are passionate, wild, kind, free and inherently feminine. I can't help but to capture their spirit when painting. Through painting, I would like to introduce you to their youthful energy, individuality, personality, beauty and - at times - anger," Kesner says. "I hope to cover your walls in color and fire as they cover me every day. I knew I found my future when my daughter said, ‘you inspire me, Mom.’"

She paints energetic, colorful, abstract expressionist art. Her work is available for viewing and purchase any time at Prairiebrooke Arts, 7900 Santa Fe Drive, Overland Park, Kansas.

For more information visit TaraKesner.com.

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