Smiths share their designing life

Apr 03, 2014
Harry Smith’s iconic fabric designs spread the coast of Maine around the world.

Camden — Coastal Quilters will meet Saturday, April 12, gathering at 9:30 a.m. for socializing and coffee, followed by program at 10 a.m. at the Camden Lions Den on Lions Lane.

This month’s program features Harry Smith, a well-known local artist, prolific in numerous art genres — painter, jeweler, sculptor, miniaturist, designer and an author. His work is available in limited edition prints, paintings and carvings and more. Smith is rated as one of America's top traditional craftsman by Early American Life and his one-man show in New York City was attended by the greats of the of art world.

Smith’s studios, on Mt. Battie along the edge of Camden Hills State Park, overlook the coast of Maine. From the window of an 1860s sea captain’s house, he paints sailing vessels, lobster boats and osprey. He steps out of the studio to sketch animals, wildflowers from trillium to lady-slippers and birds. Moxie, the Smiths’ 20-pound Maine coon cat, resides in the studio and has occasionally been a model, as well.

One of the primary aspects of Smith’s art is Licensing Design — original design, creations done in collaboration with wife Marsha, who will appear with Smith to focus on this aspect of the art. Their love and respect of nature is reflected in each of the artists’ signature pieces, as are their gardens. These designs are commissioned by numerous well-known national/international companies including Neiman Marcus, Forbes Magazine, New York Magazine, Brinkley Dome and others.

The Smiths will discuss their design process from start to finish, going from that first seed of an idea in the mind through the process that results in a design translated to numerous products. Their designs turn up in a wide array of formats for promotions/products from catalog and other cover art to bolts of fabrics, pillows, rugs, dinnerware, etc. Anyone who is a seamstress or quilter and creates Maine-related pieces is likely to have used fabrics designed by the Smiths.

Smith’s series of three-dimensional sterling silver Christmas ornaments, created from intricately carved wax masters are in numerous museums and private collections worldwide, as are his miniature furniture and fine art paintings. All have been the subject of many books. In addition, Smith has written and illustrated several books including three children's books, “ABCs of Maine” (in print since 1980), “ABCs of New Hampshire” and “Michael & the Mary Day.” Other books include “The Art of Making Furniture in Miniature,” “Windjammers of the Maine Coast” and “Miniatures.” To explore the full array of Smith’s art, visit harrywsmith.com.

The program will be followed by a refreshment break, Show & Tell and a short business meeting. Coastal Quilters’ programs/meetings are free and open to all. For more information about the program or the group, call 236-3821 or 236-6215.

Courier Publications’ A&E Editor Dagney C. Ernest can be reached at (207) 594-4401, ext. 115; or dernest@courierpublicationsllc.com.

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