Kay Smith Artist Laureate of Illinois Water Color ArtKay Smith Artist Laureate of Illinois Water Color Art
Kay Smith Artist
These watercolor still lifes and landscapes are a joy for me. I painted them strictly for my own pleasure and practice.

My career always has been assignments, at first as a commercial illustrator and then as an on-site painter of American historic sites that comprise my American Legacy Collection.

But, in between times, I looked for the beauty in a bouquet of flowers and the light on a sun-filled garden.

Some of these paintings were larger challenges. Cypress Tree at Pebble Beach, painted on location, not only had the difficult elements of land, sky and water, but the wind insisted on blowing away my paper and brushes! The San Jose Mission turned out to be a lovely painting after the first half-dozen failed attempts. The building was in disrepair and required my artistic restoration. At first, I came too close to an architectural drawing. What I wanted was the feel of the place, the image you would take home after being there.

I’ve had a lot of acknowledgements in my life. Being named Artist Laureate of Illinois is the one of which I am most proud. Also, teaching watercolor at Chicago’s Old Town Triangle Association for twenty years is an experience I treasure. At 97, I now paint for myself, and each painting is dear to me.