Featured artist: Frances Smith



Senior Frances Smith strives to make her art about her thoughts and curiosities. She views each piece not as a finished product, but instead as a marker of her growth as an artist.

For some, art is just a hobby. For Frances Smith, it’s how she materializes her ideas into beautiful creations.

Senior Frances Smith has been drawing for as long as she can remember, but through taking art classes and practicing regularly, she has transformed her casual hobby into so much more. Smith said her art falls into two distinct categories, one being more illustrative, while the other is more painterly. Besides creating art in these classic forms, Smith has recently been experimenting with other mediums such as photography and video.

Since her sophomore year of high school, Smith has expanded her love of art from a hobby to a more serious passion.

“Taking art classes, being given the time and space to consider my art as well as my relationship to it, combined with being surrounded by other young artists, is what helped me realize that art is more than just a hobby to me,” Smith said.


Smith finds ideas for her artwork throughout her daily life and writes the thoughts she comes up with in a journal that she looks back on when starting new pieces.

“Sometimes I’m directly inspired by an event or something I saw or read somewhere, but most times I like to make work about my own thoughts and curiosities,” Smith said.

Senior Dani Morgan, a friend of Smith, said that Smith’s personality is integrated within her art.

“You can definitely see Frances’ ability to incorporate her own individuality and creativity into her art,” Morgan said. “It’s difficult to get to a place where you understand your ideas and how to put them into action, and it’s evident that she can do that in her pieces.”

Smith has been working on her portfolio, where she is expected to explain each of her compositions and the meaning behind them. Senior Marta Abrams, another friend of Smith, said that Smith’s explanations to her pieces read beautifully.

“The way that she explains her art is almost like art itself. I think it’s a whole other layer of what she creates, and when she gets inspiration it’s all in her head,” Abrams said. “These are normal thoughts that she can have, but it’s what she does with those thoughts to create her art which is really beautiful.”

Abrams said that Smith’s ability to express various social issues into her artwork in simplistic ways allows her to create beautiful pieces.

“There was this piece that I remember so clearly. It was of this woman on the toilet, and part of her shirt was up so her chest was showing, and she’s just going to the bathroom,” Abrams said. “In the portfolio, it explains the feeling as a woman of not being able to do even the grossest or most unattractive acts, like going to the bathroom, and still being sexualized. I thought that was just such a beautiful piece; kind of simple, but definitely really deep within itself.”

Smith said a lot of the satisfaction she gets from creating art is from the process of working on a piece itself.

“It’s difficult for me to really see my own work in terms of a final product. When I see my work I see the process, so each piece is sort of a marker in my intellectual and artistic growth,” Smith said.

Morgan is especially inspired by Smith’s creative process because of the immense dedication she has to her work.

“Her love of art is inspiring to me because it empowers me to be more passionate in my own creative process when I see the work she puts in and the satisfaction that comes with finished pieces and technical artistic growth,” Morgan said.

Abrams said that at such a young age it’s hard to find one thing you’re especially passionate about, but for Smith, it’s clear she’s found it.

“Frances does her art for herself. I think at this age, it’s really hard to find things that you’re just doing for yourself to be happy and not for anybody else,” Abrams said. “It’s clear that her art has made her happy for a long time, and it’s going to do that forever.”