Instructor Directory

Our instructors are drawn from a wealth of talented teachers, including nationally known artists from across the country and across the street. They are innovative craftsmen and artists who enjoy trying new techniques and love sharing what they do with their students.

If you are an experienced art, craft, writing, or performing arts instructor and are interested in teaching at Shake Rag Alley, click here for more information.

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Laura Lein-Svencner

Photo of Laura Lein-Svencner

Laura Lein-Svencner grew up in Downers Grove, Illinois, close to her grandfather’s farm, which was the last operating farm there, and now resides in Darien, Illinois. She’s married with four grown children and a home full of loving creatures. Although she has studied drawing, printmaking, sculpture, book arts, and the art of hand paper-making, it is the love of paper and design that call her attention. She comes from many generations of “creative makers” working with their hands.

She is a signature member of the National Collage Society and co-founder of the Midwest Collage Society, which exhibits throughout the Chicagoland area. She has won many awards for her work, which are represented at Woodwalk Gallery in Egg Harbor, WI. Her works have been published in Incite 1, 2, 3 and 4 of North Light Publishing, Somerset Studio, Cloth Paper Scissors, the Professional Artist magazine, Artists Magazine, and Watercolor Artist magazine through the years. Laura has self-published a collage sketchbook-instructional design book, and she has continued her second love of teaching the fine art of collage in classroom settings, workshops, and online for the past 26 years. Her work has found its way into many homes through the United States and internationally.

From 2015 to present, Laura’s work was selected to be printed on material by clothing design company Dolcezza-Simply Art from Canada (

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Floating Collage Composition Big & Little