Artist Biography ~ L. Nicholas Smith
“Every new beginning comes from another beginning’s end.” ~Lucius Annaeus Seneca
L. Nicholas Smith was born and raised among the Appalachian foothills of the southern Ohio River valley. Being blessed with sharp visual acuity have made colors, dimensions, and shapes dominate his senses. Childhood curiosity to draw the intensity of what he saw began on his household walls, TV, and any reachable objects which would hold ink. As a teenager his most prestigious recognition was winning the Congressional Art Competition. That piece was displayed at the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington D.C.
Fine art needs focus and patience. This is a challenging combination for most young men. So, at 17 years old, Nick enlisted as an airborne infantryman in the US active duty Army. By 19, he completed his first combat tour in Operation Desert Shield and Desert Storm with the 82nd Airborne Division during the Persian Gulf War.
After the busy years of active duty military service as a paratrooper, academia seemed like a welcome change of pace. However, while in college he still simultaneously served in the Ohio Army National Guard as an engineer. He was deployed numerous times while in the Guard for international and domestic humanitarian and disaster relief operations. This combination of study and service also cultivated his artistic foundations.
Nick graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree concentrated in painting and drawing from The Ohio State University. Instead of attending his graduation ceremony, he opted to lead an Army Guard company on a disaster relief deployment to Nicaragua. Upon return, he felt his military experience was needed more than his art. So, he volunteered again to serve full-time in the active duty Army. He then went on to earn a commission as an Army Medical Service Corps Officer after completion of Officer Candidate School. Following a tour in the Republic of Korea, he completed flight school and became a pilot qualified on the UH-1 Iroquois and UH-60 Blackhawk MEDEVAC helicopters.
Multiple overseas and combat deployments occurred throughout the rest of his military career. Nick honorably retired from active duty military service in 2015. Finally he feels as if he has contributed enough to our country‘s needs and is now ready to cultivate personal ambitions.
Following more than 25 years of regular abuse from a physically demanding profession, he surprisingly still has that above average eyesight and now, also has a lot more patience. Nick‘s focus has finally returned to painting. His currently available portfolios include the Military Collection, Texas Collection, Sampler Collection, Color Collection, Holiday Collection, and Special Commissions.
Nick has led a diverse life living all over the world. He owns a piece of the Texas hill country where his studio sits nestled in the shade trees on the back of his homesteaded property. This is where he completes his wife's honey-do lists, raises their two children, and finally gets uninterrupted time to paint and create.