Rachel Collins considers herself a realistic painter of nature’s abstract form. Although she grew up in a home in New York state where her mother taught oil painting, design and composition, she did not pursue art on her own until she reached her mid-thirties. By then she had graduated from Middlebury College with a degree in French, obtained a masters degree in library science from the University of Wisconsin, and worked for several years as librarian, archivist and museum curator at the Baha’i World Centre in Haifa, Israel.
Upon her return to the States in 1990, an interest in natural science illustration led her to an internship in the Department of Entomology at the Museum of Natural History. But eventually watercolor, originally taken up as a once-a-week hobby in Israel, became her primary medium. Her interest in natural science subjects has continued, but with a fine arts focus. Her work has hung and taken awards in a variety of nationally competitive watercolor exhibits, and she has had solo shows in galleries at art centers, colleges and universities, and other institutions in the Washington, DC area. She has been awarded signature membership in the National Watercolor Society, the Watercolor USA Honor Society, and the Transparent Watercolor Society of America, among others.
Rachel Collins is a juried member of the Torpedo Factory Artists Association, and as such paints regularly in her studio in the Torpedo Factory Art Center in Alexandria, VA. She teaches classes in watercolor at The Art League School in Alexandria, weekend workshops at the Yellow Barn Studio in Glen Echo, MD, and longer workshops elsewhere in the United States and abroad.
Rachel Collins lives with her husband in southeastern Fairfax County, Virginia; they have two adult children. When not involved in painting, Rachel plays the bassoon in the band and several chamber ensembles at the Alexandria campus of Northern Virginia Community College and currently serves on the Spiritual Assembly of the Baha’is of Mount Vernon, Virginia.
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