Featured artist

Jill Smith


I was born and brought up in London. Our flat overlooked the line from Northampton to Euston, although I did not move here until after I was married. This line was a prime target for enemy bombers, so was a rather perilous place to live!

I loved to draw and paint from an early age, and did well in the subject at school. I attended a co-ed grammar school in London, where I met my husband. Due to family circumstances I did not go on to study art full time, and did not continue with my interest in art for many years. I worked for Guinness at their brewery in London for the overseas branch, which was building breweries in Lagos and Kuala Lumpur. I then moved to Newport Pagnell, and was one of the first employees of the Milton Keynes Development Corporation - before any building or even planning of the new city began. It is amazing now to see what the city has become! I finished my working life in pensions and investment.

I came back to art when I needed a distraction from looking after a family, and went to local authority evening classes - first in watercolour, and then for quite a few years I studied pastel portrait painting at the Art School in Northampton under Melissa Dring.

I joined the Carey Art Group, where John is our tutor, when I retired, and that was when I first tried acrylics. Since then acrylic has become my main medium, but I continue with the pastels, watercolour and drawing as well. I have been Secretary of the Carey Art Group for 12 or more years now.

I do not have a favourite subject, and although I do paint the odd landscape, I prefer to paint genre paintings, and keep my portrait hand in from time to time. I like to paint sport and action pictures, as I enjoy painting figures. I am a keen photographer and most of my photos are taken with a view to turning them into paintings - although as I have many hundreds of them, I doubt I will ever succeed in painting them all!

As well as the Fellowship, I have been a member of Network Arts for many years, and have entered my work in some of their exhibitions - winning a couple of awards - as well as in various other exhibitions in the area over the years. I also belong to another small group which meets in the house of a friend, so I have plenty of opportunities to paint - and as I paint quite quickly, I have built up quite a stock! I have now installed a picture hanging system at home to try to keep them all in check! However, I cannot imagine not painting, and will continue to do so, even if I do disappear under a pile of my work!



England vs South Africa




Boats in Mousehole Harbour












Then and Now


Children in Mousehole Harbour





Back to Top