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Repurposed 19th Century Factory Inspires a New Generation of Artists like Kathie Collinson

Updated: Nov 28, 2022

Snow Beauty by Kathie Collinson; Size: 16in x 20in; Medium: Encaustic painting with embedded photography and graphite; Substrate: Cradled Panel...Scroll down for more artwork...

Award-winning, Aurora, IL-based artist, Kathie Collinson, couldn’t have found a more inspiring studio for teaching and creating. Setting up shop in the historic Starline Factory, 300 W. Front Street in Harvard, Illinois, this unique location thrives with inventive energy for today’s visionaries, like Kathie.

The factory, dating back to 1888, once manufactured more than 50 different products and launched 250 patents all related to streamlining farm work, such as hay carriers. Since then, it has transitioned to meet the needs of a new Century of makers.

According to Starline Factory’s website (Artists / Studios | Starline Factory), it is now home to more than 35 regional artists, artisans, and proprietors.

Kathie's Starline Factory second floor studio offers a rustic vibe with large windows, high ceilings, and exposed brick -- the perfect setting for herself and her students.

Kathie states she loves her studio location where she produces art using her two favorite mediums, encaustic painting and colored pencil. Additionally, she enjoys photography scouting for memorable images to capture. Nature themes, she says, are the foundation of her art inspiration.

It’s no surprise she’s been a full-time artist since 2015 now since she’s been drawing dating back to childhood. As she looks ahead to 2023, she will be expanding class offerings at her Harvard studio location. She’s also involved in supporting important causes such as “Art for Life” which raises funds for HIV/AIDS and “Art will Save Her” helping women return to normalcy after sexual trafficking.

Like many busy full-time creatives, she notes that finding time to create her own art is an ongoing challenge.

“Creating art allows me a way to work through my reactions to the world around me along with processing my feelings,“ she observes. “It’s how I find joy. It also allows me to give back as I donate my work to support causes important to me. Helping people is a big part of who I am.”

Learn more about Kathie at: About | Collinsonfineart

BEYOND; Size: 16in x 20in; Medium: Encaustic painting with shellac burn on top; Substrate: Cradled Panel

TWILIGHT; Size: 10in x 10in x .875; Medium: Encaustic paint with Photography

Substrate: Cradled Panel

YELLOW IRIS; Size: 5x7; Medium: Colored Pencil; Substrate: Archival Black Board

DAISIES; Size: 8in x 10in x .875; Medium: Photo transferred into encaustic with pan pastel and charcoal; Substrate: Cradled Panel

BARN OWL; Size: 11in x 14in; Medium: Colored Pencil; Substrate: Green linen matboard

Learn more Learn more Fine Line Creative Arts Center |


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