As a young girl Katrina remembers watching her mother paint and wanting to paint too. Throughout the years her parents encouraged her to pursue her art. After high school she enrolled in a community college for an Associate’s Degree in commercial art where she was first exposed to design and color concepts. She taught herself to paint with watercolors and was very excited about the vibrant colors she was able to achieve.
After winning several local art shows from 1991 to 1996 she was a finalist of the Artist Magazine for their Cover Art Contest. In 1997 she was selected as a Signature Member of the National Watercolor Society and won the Winsor Newton Award for her painting “Bumblebee Banquet”. She has also been selected for several shows in the Kansas Watercolor Society and the Missouri Watercolor Society.
In 2003 she decided to change her medium to oils. She needed a challenge and changing mediums was her first step. She was first inspired by close up photographs of autumn leaves. The sun shining through the leaves with deep shadows and repetitive shapes. She would go out late in the afternoon, when the light is most interesting, and walks the trails in a local forest. She’d take photographs and bring them back to her studio and try to recreate the feelings she had while walking the trails.
Through her study of art, Katrina has been inspired from a vast range of styles, from great impressionist to the amazing realists of the 20th century. "Artist such at Renoir and Degas, with their vibrant use of color, unique compositions, and amazing application of paint, left me so excited to explore my own interpretations of simple landscapes and portraiture." One cannot help but see similarities between her work and contemporary artist such as Chuck Close and Richard Estes....but with her own unique style and compositions in mind. "Robert Bateman, Joseph Raffael, and Richard Estes, all have very different styles; however, they have captured the essence of their subject matter in such uniquely different ways. Whether it’s the New York scenes of Richard Estes realistic paintings or Raffael's use of color, I am continually inspired to reinvent myself and interpret the beauty I see around me in new ways."
Katrina is working on a new series of paintings featuring the people and places of Omaha. “I’ve always been fascinated by the feel of downtown Omaha. There are so many interesting facets of Omaha that you don’t see until you walk the streets. There are business people, people waiting for buses, homeless people and me. The architecture is more interesting on the walking level too. Richard Estes has captured the feel of New York and although I don’t live in a city like New York I would like to be able to “capture” the feel of Omaha.”
Katrina is currently showing her work at the Artists’ Cooperative Gallery, 405 S. 11th Street, Omaha, NE 68102 and Robert Paul Galleries in Stowe, Vermont.