Painting the animals and landscapes of Yellowstone National Park is a labor of love for Wyoming native George Dee Smith. Smith and his twin brother, Francis Lee, spent endless days and weeks in the wilderness of the park from the time that they were young boys. Working with horses and biking in the Absaroka Wilderness were also favorite pastimes. A former architect turned full-time landscape painter, Smith, now married and the father of two adult children, still spends 30 to 40 days a year in the rugged back country which he has come to know so well. These annual trips into his beloved Yellowstone provide Smith not only with subject matter for his luminous paintings, but are mentally and spiritually restorative as well.
George Dee Smith cites Adolph Spore and Edward T. Greigware as major influences on his artistic development. Russell, Koerner, Remington and Wyeth have also been influential, yet he has managed to craft a very personal style which is, first and foremost, informed by his close association with nature and his deep love for the animals and landscape of Yellowstone National Park. Smith has often said that he was born 100 years too late as he feels such a deep affinity for the life of the mountain man and the cowboy. The American wapiti and the American bison are favorite subjects. Smith’s extremely fine brushwork and wonderful use of color, together with his knowledge of animal anatomy, bring these creatures to life and provide a marvelous record of a timeless part of the American experience.