Ford Smith - Contemporary Artist

FORD SMITH, one of the world’s renowned contemporary artists, Ford Smith, has proven that it’s never too late to realize your dream. After graduating from the University of Mississippi in 1972, Smith pursued work in graphic design and photography, if only to pay the bills post-grad at the time. From then until his 50th birthday, Smith worked industriously toward--as well as maintained--a lucrative career as Atlanta’s premier commercial and fashion photographer. It was then that he decided to sell the business and pursue fine art acrylic painting, which he happened to excel at on a world-class level.

Recalling his time as an adolescent growing up in Japan, where his father was stationed in the military, his mother recognized this ability and set him up with art lessons. With a toolbox of existing creative skills, an artistic eye and a semi-photographic memory, Smith has now recreated and reimagined thousands of landscapes with a series of innately-calculated brush strokes. He claims that his career in photography has led him to become a better painter than he would have been otherwise, although the talent was undeniable at baseline.

His striking command of color paired with apparently fearless self-expression, he adopted an entirely new and distinctive style, akin to the never-before-seen quality of Van Gogh’s work during the late nineteenth century. Smith opted to travel the world in pursuit of visual inspiration; landscapes turned out to be his most awestriking muse. Allowing the scenes to reveal themselves to him, rather than vice versa, his hand appears to be guided by some invisible force of nature. He allows gravity to push and pull the paint in different directions, displacing and overlapping itself in a very controlled, yet free-flowing way.

The intricate details, bright colors, soft textures and sharp contrast work in conjunction to reveal what some consider to be among the greatest contemporary art. Smith’s meteoric rise happened overnight in New York City, where he first showcased his work publicly. Since then he has received monumental accolades from critics, collectors and the media. His work has been collected and displayed intercontinentally by private entities and corporations alike, and is up for sale in numerous galleries in Roswell, Atlanta and the U.S.