Artists of Note | Betty Nance Smith

Painting beauty and joy

Betty Nance Smith, A Flower in Her Hair, oil, 33 x 28.

Betty Nance Smith, A Flower in Her Hair, oil, 33 x 28.

This story was featured in the November 2014 issue of Southwest Art magazine. Get the Southwest Art November 2014 print issue or digital download now–then subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss another story!

For Betty Nance Smith, art is a celebration of life. Over the years, her painting has evolved from a talent worth exploring to a gift worth sharing with others. Thus, Smith says, if she can make a viewer half as happy as she was when creating the artwork, her gifts have been well-used. She enjoys working in all genres but does have a few favorite subjects, including portraits of children, seascapes, flowers from her bountiful gardens, and young people in settings that conjure up stories in her mind. Each speaks to her soul.

Whether it’s a vase brimming with lavender asters or young costumed models, Smith prefers to paint from life. From time to time she also uses various reference tools, such as small oil studies and photographs. The New Mexico-based artist has studied at the Fechin Institute in Taos and also with artists she calls “painterly realists,” including Sherrie McGraw, David Leffel, Gregg Kreutz, and Dan Gerhartz. Smith’s oil paintings have been honored in both national and regional Oil Painters of America shows; she is a signature member of the group. When asked what she hopes to convey in her works, Smith replies, “The beauty and joy in life, which can be overlooked in our fast-paced, often ugly world.”

As this story was going to press, Smith was busy preparing fresh new works for a show opening in November at La Posada de Santa Fe Resort & Spa. 
—Bonnie Gangelhoff

Smith is represented by La Posada de Santa Fe Resort & Spa, Santa Fe, NM.

Featured in the November 2014 issue of Southwest Art magazine–click below to purchase:
Southwest Art November 2014 print issue or digital download Or subscribe to Southwest Art and never miss a story!

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