Artist Leisa Collins has a passion for historic homes and buildings. She's gained national recognition through her extensive travels and has painted close to 2,000 architectural subjects in all 50 states. Today she receives requests from around the country for paintings of homes and historic buildings, and has a following of realtors who give her original house portraits as closing gifts to their favorite clients.
In 2013, she launched her Leisa Collins Historic Preservation Award in order to give back to homeowners and individuals who work tirelessly to preserve their homes and enrich their communities. The award is an original painting of the restored project and she has now presented it to 10 preservation heroes in seven states. She is currently working on a coffee table book entitled “Art Inspiring Homes Across America” that will feature paintings of her homes in every state, taking readers on an architecture journey across America.
In 2013, one of our members, Julie Liska—who is also an architect and presents some of our seminars—was the second recipient of the Leisa Collins Historic Preservation Award.
Leisa Collins (left) and Julie Liska (right) holding the award in front of Julie's winning bungalow, 2013
As part of an ongoing Chicago House Portrait Series, Leisa has painted many Chicago bungalows and other vintage homes. Take a look at the portraits below! (Click each picture to enlarge)
About Chicago's architecture, Leisa writes:
It is a well known fact that the architecture of Chicago has influenced and reflected upon the history of American architecture. Chicago’s architecture displays the city’s fascinating history and it’s multicultural heritage. It features a variety of styles, designed by prominent architects. Sadly, in the downtown area most structures were destroyed by the Great Chicago Fire in 1871 (the most famous exception being the Water Tower), therefore Chicago buildings are mainly noted for their originality.
But beyond the downtown area and its towering skyscrapers, wander through the residential streets and you you will soon see why Chicago uniqueness is world-famous, from Chicago Bungalows and Victorian Two-Flats to the grand Greystones along Logan Boulevard. There is also a wonderful variety of religious architecture such as the city’s ornate 'Polish Cathedrals.'
Capturing their special memories, these original hand-painted portraits are now proudly on display inside each of these lovely vintage homes.
Visit Leisa's website to learn more, see other artwork, or inquire about commissioning a house portrait.