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Quinlan Visual Arts Center includes Macon artists works in Spring Exhibitions
Painting by Daly Smith - photo by Courtesy of Quinlan Visual Arts Center

Quinlan Spring Exhibitions: Artist Daly Smith

When: Through June 3

Where: Quinlan Visual Arts Center, 514 Green St. NE, Gainesville

Cost: Free

More info: or 770-536-2575

Daly Smith, a 72-year-old architect and artist, said instead of retiring, he got himself a job and a half.

“I tell people my plan was to retire from architecture and paint,” Smith said.

But instead of retirement, the Macon resident fills his days working 40 hours a week while still making about a hundred paintings a year.

The inspirations for his paintings differ, but he said he does seem to paint a lot of water.

“They say I paint a lot of boats and water, and I guess I do,” Smith said about the Ocmulgee Painters Society commenting on his work. “I didn’t realize I do that, but I do like to paint boats and water and barns.”

But those aren’t the only things that inspire him.

“It’s really weird what inspires me,” he said. “The things that you would think would be really easy to paint or you would want to paint sometimes don’t appeal to me. I’ll know it when I see it, but I can’t tell you ahead of time what it would be.”

And although his inspirations may vary, they do have a common theme, which he said is simply “light.”

“It almost always has to do with the light on a subject,” he said. “That’s just sort of universal with all artists. That’s just a thread that runs through almost all artists’ paintings alike.”

Smith said while he does spend most nights and weekends painting, it wasn’t always like that for him.

“When I went to Georgia Tech, I took a few courses in drawing just as part of the curriculum,” he said. “(But) I never really got into it after that until I moved. I was living in Macon, but when I moved, I moved out near Wesleyan College and they had night art classes. So I went and took a couple of classes there.”

That was in the mid ‘90s when he began focusing more on his artwork, but it wasn’t until 2006 that he made a New Year’s resolution to create about 100 paintings a year.

“I’ve pretty much managed to do that ever since,” he said.

Since focusing more on his art, Smith has joined several organizations, including the Ocmulgee Painters Society and the American Society of Marine Artists.

Both groups have work on display at the Quinlan Visual Arts Center as part of its Spring Exhibitions, and some of Smith’s work is featured as part of the show.

He said there are a couple of reasons he likes to join art groups.

“One is that they all sponsor national shows two or three times a year,” he said. “If you’re not a member, you can’t enter into a lot of those shows. And two, you kind of meet a lot of other artists through those organizations, and you learn a lot about what’s going on in the art community in the country.”

He said he’s excited to have his work on display at the Quinlan.

“I wish we had a facility like that in Macon,” he said. “Gainesville is lucky to have that. I thought it was great just to get (in) a venue like that, and it’s always nice to be invited to show in an event.”