ABOUT THE ARTIST


Outside

Katherine Larson is a painter, designer, children's book illustrator and classical singer. Described as a true renaissance woman by her clients, Katherine's murals and artwork can be found around the globe from vineyards in Florence, Italy, to Great Harvest Bread Stores across the United States, to many restaurants, retail stores, corporations and private homes. Her singing and children's books span the nation as well. She has won many national and international awards and made appearances with well known orchestras and opera companies. She is the illustrator of eleven nationally distributed children's books, including the award-winning "G is for Grand Canyon, Arizona Alphabet" book, published by Sleeping Bear Press. She is also the author and illustrator of "Ann Arbor Observed" a twenty-two year retrospective of her cover illustrations for the Ann Arbor Observer monthly magazine.

BUSINESS HISTORY

Primarily self-taught in all disciplines, Ms. Larson began her studies at Ball State University shortly after landing her first job at sixteen as the country's youngest courtroom artist, for WSBT-TV in South Bend, Indiana. At eighteen, she took a summer job as a fashion illustrator for L.S. Ayres in Indianapolis which soon evolved into a full time position. An ad agency found her shortly there after when she won a national retail award for one of her ads. Serving as creative director for that agency gave her valuable experience in all phases of the creative process. She then took an in-house position as advertising manager with an international company in Arizona. This position gave her a client's perspective on advertising and the resulting sales and led to the opening of her own design studio.

Her design business thrives to this day as she works with entrepreneurs and start-up companies to help in all phases of their business development. Over a period of nearly 20 years, her desire to provide a one-stop shop for her clients has resulted in an wide diversification of skills and abilites. In an attempt to fulfill their growing needs, Katherine began doing illustrations, murals, in-store designs, interior redesigns, paintings, photography and writing. Each new venture opened new career opportunities resulting in the diversified skills for which she is best known today.

AS AN ARTIST

Katherine's first love has always been painting. She sold her first painting at the age of fourteen. She has done over 150 murals nationwide and many more illustrations for book covers, children's books, magazine covers and articles. She has been commissioned for oils and watercolors by clients across the United States. Most of her work comes to her by referrals or through her website.

Recently, Katherine decided to begin entering painting competitions. Her very first painting competition was the Glen Arbor Paint-out in August of 2011, where she took the "People's Choice" award. She also took second place in the Howell Michigan Paint Out in 2012 and a silver award at the "2014 Our Town" show in Birmingham, Michigan. She continues to sell her work on the web and through art fairs. Commissions from clients are her preference, but new paintings are being created all the time. Only a fraction of the work is shown on the web. Katherine welcomes studio visits and has a traveling portfolio of murals and artworks. She can be contacted at divalarson@aol.com for a private studio tour or site visit.

AS A SINGER

Katherine's classical singing career started late. She was 27 years old before she sang her first solo. She recieved private coaching through the University of Michigan and in Italy from a well respected LaScala coach. She went on to become a regular soloist for the Ann Arbor Symphony and has appeared with the Illinois Symphony, the Toledo Opera, the Comic Opera Guild of Ann Arbor, Northwestern University Orchestra, South Bend Symphonic Choir, Indiana University Philharmonic Orchestra, the Perrysburg Symphony, and the University Musical Society. The Ann Arbor News wrote of one of her performances:“Larson has one of those golden voices. She produces a gorgeous sound, as rich and warm as it is remarkably clear; her projection and stage manner are similarly enticing…Larson was perfection as she whispered the poignant final reiterated words in the last song…; indeed she found just the right sound for each of the song’s three sections.

Katherine is most known for her dramatic portrayals of Puccini and Verdi heroines. Performance highlights include the title role of Tosca with both the Lincoln Opera of Chicago and OPERA!Lenawa of Michigan; Madama Butterfly with Indiana Opera North; the Verdi Requiem for Illinois Symphony and Toledo Symphony, Mendelsohn’s Elijah with the University Musical Society and Mahler's Resurrection Symphony at Hill Auditorium in 2005. She was also the featured soloist in Mahler's 4th Symphony for the Ann Arbor Symphony's 2009 season finale.

Ms. Larson is the recipient of numerous national and international awards, including the International Licia Albanese-Puccini Foundation Competition, the National Friedrich Schorr Memorial Competition, and the National Bel Canto Competition. She was also a finalist in both the Queens Opera Competition in New York and the Lyric Opera of Chicago Center for American Artists competition.

PERSONAL INFORMATION

Katherine was born in South Bend, Indiana and currently resides just north of Ann Arbor, Michigan where she runs a graphic design studio servicing clients across the United States. She is on the road often doing murals. She is also available to speak to groups about her career as an artist, singer and business owner. During the school season, she does school assemblies and works with schools to help students create their own murals (see Hands-on Murals). And, she still makes stage appearances occasionally, but sings regularly...mostly in the woods when she is on a walk with her weimaraner, Maestro.

 

Painting out

Education
Ball State University- Undergraduate work in Fine Art and Journalism
University Of Michigan- Audited courses in Opera Workshop
Washtenaw Community College- German studies and Welding
British Institute- Florence, Italy- Italian Studies
Goethe Institute- Rothenburg, Germany- German Studies
Private Coaching- Maestro Walter Barrachi, Repetiteur, Lyric Opera of Chicago
Private Coaching, Lorna Haywood, University of Michigan

Exhibits/Awards/Fairs/Residencies

"Reaching for the Light" Invitational Exhibition hosted by The Rackham Graduate School of U-M, Artwork "Vessel 2" featured on poster: November 2014

"Our Town" 2014 Exhibit, The Community House, Birmingham Michigan
Winner Silver Award "Fleetwood Diner"- October 2014

"Dexter Daze" Dexter, Michigan, August 2013

"State Street Fair" Ann Arbor Art Fairs, Ann Arbor Michigan, July 2012 and 2013

"Paint Out", Competition, Howell Michigan
Second Place Award, August 2012

"Waterfront Wine and Art Festival" Thunderbird Artists, Scottsdale, Arizona- February 2012

"Glen Arbor Art Association Paint Out Exhibit" Glen Arbor, Michigan
Winner People's Choice Award "The Grist Mill"- August 2011

"Light through the Eyes of Nature"- HVCA Gallery, Highland, Michigan
Solo Exhibition- March 2010 "

Ann Arbor Observed"- Common Cup Gallery, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Solo Exhibition - March 2010

"Artist In Residence"- Porcupine Wilderness Park, Ontonagan, Michigan
Two week residency- July 2008

Awards-Classical Singing
National Bel Canto Competition, Winner 1992
International Licia Albanese-Puccini Foundation Competition, Scholarship Winner 1993
National Friedrich Shorr Memorial Competition, Winner 1992
Queens Opera Competition, New York, Finalist 1994
Lyric Opera of Chicago Center for American Artists Competition, Finalist, 1994

Katherine Larson

Noteable Awards-Art
Winner, Blue Man Group, 25 Years of Living in Full Color, Chicago Illinois, 2016
Silver Award-
Our Town Exhibit, Birmingham, Michigan, 2014
Winner, Whole Foods Mural Competition, Detroit Michigan, 2013
Second Place
- Howell Paint-Out, Howel Michigan, 2012
People's Choice Award- Glen Arbor Paint Out, Glen Arbor, Michigan, 2011
Grand Canyon Readers Award- A is for Arches, Children's Book Award 1992
Best Cookbook and Best Catering Brochure Design- Katherine's Catering 1991
Addy Award, Newsletter Design, South Bend, Indiana 1990
National Retail Ad Award, L.S. Ayres 1981
Gold Key Award, 1979

LIST OF PUBLIC WORKS AND EXHIBITS (Updated regularly)

2016:
Buddy's Pizza, Interior brick mural, Shelby, Michigan
Mott's Children's Hospital, several Emergency Center commissioned murals, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Sanibel Outlets, Four exterior murals, Ft Myers, Florida
Google North Headquarters, Four interior murals, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Valley Children's Hospital, 2 commissioned murals, Madera, California

2015
The City of Charlevoix, Exterior landmark mural, Charlevoix, Michigan
Cat Footwear, Exterior floor mural, Portable on Canvas

2014
Google Headquarters, two interior murals, Ann Arbor, Michigan
The Community House, "Our Town" Competition Exhibit, Silver Medal Winner, Birmingham, Michigan
Rackham Graduate School, "Reaching for the Light" Invitational Exhibition, Ann Arbor, Michigan
St. Joseph Mercy Oakland, South Tower, Landmark Mural, 4th floor, Pontiac, Michigan
Motts Children's Hospital, Pediatric ICU, (Michigan Forest) mural commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Campus Inn, Exterior Mural of Coach Bo (addition to existing mural), Ann Arbor, Michigan
Dexter Bakery, Exterior Mural, Dexter, Michigan
Vellum, Interior artwork including prints, several oils and a faux finish wall, Ann Arbor, Michigan
St. Joseph Mercy Oakland, South Tower, Landmark Mural, 3rd floor, Pontiac, Michigan
St. Joseph Mercy Oakland, South Tower, selected prints in permanent collection, Pontiac, Michigan

2013
Whole Foods, exterior mural (winner of mural competition), Detroit, Michigan
Motts Children's Hospital, Pediatric ICU, (Wall of Courage) mural commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Bentley Historical Library, oil portrait commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Campus Inn, oil painting commission (Lurie Tower), Ann Arbor, Michigan
Campus Inn, exterior mural (President Ford), Ann Arbor, Michigan

2012
Google
, Two mural commissions, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Michigan Fine Arts Competition, Watercolor selected for competion, Birmingham, Michigan
White Lake Urgent Care, 5 selected prints in permanent collection, White Lake, Michigan
Thunderbird Artists Waterfront Show, Scottsdale, Arizona
Campus Inn, oil painting commission (Burton Tower), Ann Arbor, Michigan

2011
Ann Arbor Observer, December Issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Glen Arbor Art Association, Paint-Out Exhibition, Glen Arbor, Michigan
TFT Firefighter’s Museum, commissions for three public works, Valparaiso, Indiana
University of Michigan Hospital, commission for four mural panels, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Washtenaw Community College, presidential portrait commission, Ypsilanti, Michigan
Ann Arbor Observer, June issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan

2010
Ann Arbor Observer, December issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Arise Church, commission for two murals, Pinckney, Michigan
Putnam Township & Village of Pinckney, 175 year historical mural, Pinckney, Michigan
La Vita Bistro, restaurant mural commission, Pinckney, Michigan
HVAC Exhibit, “Light through the Eyes of Nature” one-woman exhibit, Milford, Michigan
Common Cup, “Ann Arbor Observed” one-woman exhibit, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Heritage School, commemorative “hands-on” public mural, Stockbridge, Michigan

2008
City Hall Gallery, “Light through the Eyes of Nature” exhibit, Farmington Hills, Michigan
Ann Arbor Observer, April issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Porcupine Wilderness State Park, landscape oil in permanent collection, U.P., Michigan
Porcupine Wilderness State Park, Artist in Residence, Ontonagan, Michigan
YMCA, 100 year commemorative oil painting commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Orchard Hills Elementary, public mural commission, Novi, Michigan
Irwin Building, commission for public work, glass globe painting, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Ann Arbor Observer, February issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Empty Bowls, “hands-on” public mural donation, Pinckney, Michigan

2007
Howell Opera House, Brighton Art Guild Exhibit, Howell, Michigan
St. Joseph Hospital, women’s wing commissioned oil painting, Ypsilanti, Michigan
First United Methodist Church, public mural commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Irwin Building, 19th Century author oil, Irwin collection, Ann Arbor, Michigan
St. Mary’s Catholic School, “Hands-on” public mural, Pinckney, Michigan
Emmons Elementary School, “Hands-on” public mural, Caldonia, Michigan
Ann Arbor Observer, November issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Ann Arbor Observer, December issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan

2006
Children’s book illustrations, “Curse of the Coins” publisher, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Motts Children’s Hospital, PICU public mural commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Children’s book illustrations, “Break-in at the Basilica” publisher, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Kettle Lake Elementary, “Hands-on” public mural, Kettle Lake, Michigan
Mancelona Elementary, “Hands-on” public mural, Mancelona, Michigan
Children’s book illustrations, “Bronner” publisher, Bad Axe, Michigan
Ann Arbor Observer, June issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Blasky & Blasky Attorneys at Law, public mural commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan

2005
Heritage Elementary, “Hands-on” public mural, third year, Saline, Michigan
Dominos Pizza National Headquarters, public mural commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Ann Arbor Art Center, Exhibition of Observer Covers, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Children’s book illustrations, “Lost in Peter’s Tomb” publisher, Ann Arbor, Michigan

2004
Irwin Building, commission for public work, murals, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Children’s book illustrations, “Reconciliation” publisher, Ann Arbor, Michigan
United Methodist Retirement Community, public mural commission, Chelsea, Michigan

2003
Children’s book illustrations, “M is for Melody” Sleeping Bear Press, Chelsea, Michigan
Children’s book illustrations, “Communion” publisher, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Fernwood Gallery, one-woman show of botanical works, Niles, Michigan
Harvest Elementary School, “Hands-on” public mural, second year, Saline, Michigan
Children’s book illustrations, “P is for Passport” Sleeping Bear Press, Chelsea, Michigan
Lloyd Bridges Traveland, public mural commission, Chelsea, Michigan

2002
Children’s book illustrations, “A is for Arches” Sleeping Bear Press, Chelsea, Michigan
Village Kitchen, restaurant mural commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Roadrunner, restaurant mural commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Harvest Elementary School, “Hands-on” public mural, Saline, Michigan
Ann Arbor Observer, July issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan

2001
Ann Arbor Observer, February issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Ann Arbor Observer, June issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Jack & Jill Daycare, public mural commissions, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Book illustrations, “G is for Grand Canyon” Sleeping Bear Press, Chelsea, Michigan
Buffman Daycare, public mural commissions, Ann Arbor, Michigan

2000
Children’s book illustrations, “Today I was Baptized” publisher, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Towsley Village, UMRC, public mural commissions, Chelsea, Michigan
Chin & Schwartz Attorneys at Law, public mural commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Farmer John’s Tours, public mural commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Huron Valley Travel, public mural commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Fine Flowers, public mural commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan

1999
Irwin Building, commission for public work, museum mural, Ann Arbor, Michigan

1998
Great Harvest Bread Store, public mural commission, Minneapolis, Minnesota
Van Gogh’s, restaurant mural commissions, Farmington Hills, Michigan

1997
Great Harvest Bread Store, public mural commission, Birmingham, Michigan
Great Harvest Bread Store, public mural commission, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Great Harvest Bread Store, public mural commission, Nashville, Tennessee
Great Harvest Bread Store, public mural commission, Fargo, North Dakota
Ann Arbor Observer, December issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Ann Arbor Observer, July issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan

1996
Ann Arbor Observer, December issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Ann Arbor Observer, October issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Zanzibar, restaurant mural commissions, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Palio, restaurant mural commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Great Harvest Bread Store, public mural commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Ann Arbor Observer, April issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Guide to Kalamazoo, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan

1995
Ciao, restaurant mural commissions, Southfield, Michigan
Book Illustration, “History of Ann Arbor,” Cover artwork, publisher, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Ann Arbor Observer, April issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Ann Arbor Observer, November issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan

1994
Ann Arbor Observer, July issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Ann Arbor Observer, December issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
City Guide, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan

1993
Ann Arbor Observer, December issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Ann Arbor Observer, November issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Ann Arbor Observer, March issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
City Guide, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan

1992
Fattoria del’Ugo, commissioned artwork for vineyard gallery & publications, Florence, Italy
Ann Arbor Observer, July issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
Ann Arbor Observer, February issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan

1991
Ann Arbor Observer, April issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan

1990
Ann Arbor Observer, December issue, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan
City Guide, magazine cover commission, Ann Arbor, Michigan

 

Please note: List is not exhaustive and does not include murals or fine art works commissioned for private homes or collections or design work done for commercial purposes.

All content of this website is copyrighted 2017, by the artist, Katherine Larson. Do not reproduce or use without express written approval of the artist. Thank you.