The founder of the Hudson River School for Landscape, Collins is a "contemporary realist" painter whose work, says painter Michael Newberry, is based on "the sensuous nature of light." Reviewing Collin's oeuvre, Newberry says
Collins paints and draws portraits, landscapes, still-lifes, and nudes. Across the board, he imbues them all with sensuous light and an aptitude for finely wrought detail. He reminds me of a scientist who shines a light on an object to see it to full advantage. And like a scientist, he sees beauty in realizing his understanding of things.
He told me "I find beauty in observing and in furthering my knowledge about light, the identity of plants and trees, and even such things as the nature of the formation of rocks and land masses."
Newberry describes Collins' masterful painting 'Drawing,' seen above:
Spreading out in foreshortened perspective are the paper and tools for drawing. Even if you are not an artist, you might have experienced the joy in going into an art store and seeing and feeling the textures of the papers, looking at the pastels and charcoals, and wondering how much fun it would be to make art.
Notice the different textures and subtle colors of the papers in Drawing.
You might notice the highlighted, ruffled, and delicately torn edges of several of the papers. I have fond memories of learning about different papers as an art student. One lesson we learned was to tear a really good acid-free 100% cotton rag paper to size using a straight edge--it's a very sensual experience. Collins gets that tactile beauty of the paper down exactly.
Anyway, I thoroughly recommend Newberry's complete review of Collins' work here.