In 1982, Clausen earned her bachelor’s degree in visual communications from Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff. Following graduation, Cat worked in marketing, public relations and art direction for 10 years including a position with WVPT Public Television in Harrisonburg, Va. Cat left her career in the fall of 1993 to become a stay-at-home mom and moved to Illinois with her husband and three-year-old son.
Craving a creative outlet, Cat began to teach herself to paint in oils, an art medium she had not studied in college. She sold her first oils to members of her small community.
A second collection, “Ribbons of Color,” began as a soul searching mission and a way to purge difficult experiences of her past. From it, she developed a permanent style of illustrative lines and brushstrokes for her work. Known as pure power, Clausen’s colorist ‘ribbons of color’ cascaded down canvases and transformed her new found creative outlet into a full blown career.
As Clausen found resolution in her own personal story, she began to seek out the story of others. The “Icons” collection followed with portraits of political and educational leaders and musicians, as well as her beloved Abraham Lincoln. Treasured by many in his home state of Illinois, Clausen’s Lincoln has gone on to grace the covers of magazines, a book and more, as well as and banners throughout the city of Chicago.