“company” name: Low Mileage Art (I have always felt a deep, twisted kind of admiration for the used car business.)

bowling name: Norm X

Born: Michael Lee Smith; Akron, Ohio; 1960
Parents: normal, middle class

Migration Pattern: Cuyahoga Falls, OH; Akron, OH; Columbus, OH; Tulsa, OK; Columbus, OH; Tulsa, OK; Albany, GA; Lakeland, FL; Tampa, FL; Lansing, MI; Underhill, VT.

A.A., 1980, Polk Community College, WinterHaven, FL; B.A., 1982, Psychology, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL; M.A., 1987, Applied Anthropology, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL. (Additional coursework toward M.A. in Heath Care and the Humanities at Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI.)

I worked in various capacities in the mental health field from 1983 to 2000. I am now producing art full time.

Current Conditions: I reside in a house in Underhill, VT with my fiancée, our dog, two cats, and fourteen sheep (which aren’t actually allowed in the house). My studio is above the garage but I have really taken over much of the house.

I began painting in the late 1980s as a way of killing time while working night shift in a psychiatric hospital in Tampa, FL.

For the most part, I am a self-taught artist. (In Tampa in the early 90s, I took a watercolor class and an acrylic class.)

My Dad used to paint some. He mostly copied other images. I thought it was cool. I can’t do that.

For a time when I was a kid I wanted to be a cartoonist. I always chickened out when it came to submitting anything for publication.

Among my most admired/influential “brand name” artists are: Van Gogh, Duchamp, Picasso, Dali, Magritte, Warhol, Peter Max, etc.

I seldom read much fiction. I tend to read about art, social sciences, science, true crime, biography, current events, history, etc.

Other interests include: music, laughter, vegetable gardening, cooking, eating, raising sheep, living life.

Among my favorite quotes: “Technique is nothing more than failed style.” (From John Waters’ film Cecil B. Demented.)

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