originally posted on Metroblogging Chicago

Lincoln Park Zoo Banner

"Hey Kate," I said on the phone to my friend Kate O'Leary, "you're all over Michigan Avenue!" Then I made a crude joke about the animal on the banner that made Kate sigh with sadness that I was her friend.

The banners are for a new exhibit at the Lincoln Park Zoo. Kate did all the illustrations (11 large paintings and 20+ smaller pieces) for the exhibit -- the Pritzker Family Children´┐Żs Zoo. There are all sorts of woodland creatures in the exhibit -- bears and otters and wolves and yes, beavers, and Kate did story-book style paintings of each of them. The exhibit officially opens today, and Kate says it's really cool for her to see her art up in such a public place and in such a permanent fashion. It's really cool for me to have my friend back again after a year of "I can't go out tonight, I have to work on the turtle for the zoo."

And Kate's art is not only available to world-class institutions like the LPZ. She runs Kate's Pet Portraits where she'll do you up your precious Mr. Snuggles in her expressive style.

Kate O'Leary