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May-01-2020 16:00printcomments

National Artist Completes Series of 100 Paintings Depicting Historic Homes in Portland

Portraits pay tribute to the cultural architectural legacy of Portland by artistically documenting the “grandeur of these homes.”

Portland, Oregon's Laurelhurst district has no shortage of charming historic bungalows.
Painting by Leisa Collins

(PORTLAND, Ore.) - Historic Portland homes are the subject of a series of original paintings by national architectural artist Leisa Collins.

This collection has been created in order to show the “unique beauty of these older homes and increase awareness of the need to protect and preserve them.”

Her Portland series, which is now available for viewing on her website, covers an eclectic mix of one hundred homes from fifteen different architectural styles, Portland Craftsman Homes, Bungalows, Tudors, Colonials, Cape Cod, Victorians and more.

The house portrait series by Collins spans seventeen of her favorite neighborhoods, including Alameda, Beaumont-Wilshire, Concordia, Grant Park, Irvington, Laurelhurst, Sabin, Sellwood-Mooreland, Eastmoreland and Westmoreland.

“If I compare Portland with other cities around the USA, I would have to say that it is a leader in terms of preserving historic homes; especially the smaller Craftsman and Tudor styles on bigger lots that so many other cities are tearing down and replacing with homes, that look like the mother ship just landed.

“On my many trips to Portland I have discovered a feast of architectural styles with beautiful tree-lined streets and colorful gardens adding to the vibrance of some of Portland’s historic residential areas,” said Collins.

The majority of these original Portland paintings now hang inside the homes of their owners for all to enjoy.

Lucky for us, the artist intends to include a number of these portraits in the Portland section of a coffee table book she is currently working on, which will feature her pen and watercolor homes and historic buildings in every state across the USA.

She feels that the book and her portrait work is a way to bring to public attention her complaint against the widespread trend of historic teardowns throughout the nation.

“Besides showing the breath of beautiful historic homes across the USA, my book will serve as a historic record of homes that could disappear before we know it,” she said.

“A number of homes I have painted in various parts of the country are no longer standing and none of them were lemons or dilapidated wrecks. The bottom line is, it’s all about the mighty dollar.”

Collins, who has helped Portland historic preservation groups raise awareness has made an offer to create an original painting of any historic home that is unnecessarily on "death row" and scheduled for demolition.

By doing this she hopes to inspire others to support the conservation of this disappearing architecture nationwide, while also honoring the home’s creation as the masterpiece it was, “from one art to another”, she added.

Leisa launched her artistic career in 2009 and began depicting the historic homes and buildings of Old Town Alexandria Virginia, where she lived. Since then she has crisscrossed the USA numerous time documenting homes while completing home portrait commission requests which she receives from around the country.

“Homes are like people,” states Leisa. “They are all uniquely different and have their own character and style. That’s what makes my job so creative and so much fun.

“An added bonus is that the pleasure in creating the house portrait can then be experienced every day by the homeowner who made their home art inspiring!”

Source: W. Ingram Media


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Sean Flynn was a photojournalist in Vietnam, taken captive in 1970 in Cambodia and never seen again.

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