ABOUT NED SMITH
E. Stanley “Ned” Smith was born Oct. 9, 1919 in Millersburg, Pa., a small town on the Susquehanna River north of Harrisburg. A self-trained artist and naturalist, in his 46-year career he created thousands of astonishingly accurate drawings and paintings of wildlife for books, magazines and other publications, as well as dozens of limited edition prints.
Ned grew up in a household that was attuned to nature; his mother was an avid birder, and his father, who managed a local shoe factory, had a passion for botany. Combining his love of natural history with an innate aptitude for art, Ned was already producing quality wildlife illustrations when he completed high school in the 1930s, but after graduation he began working, not as an artist, but as a lathe operator in a machine shop — a steady income for him and his new wife, Marie Reynolds, his childhood sweetheart.
He continued to draw and paint, however, spending every spare moment in the field — a habit that continued throughout his life, and honed his abilities as both an observer of wildlife, and one of the best naturalists the region has ever produced. In 1939 he made his first commercial sale, a cover painting for Pennsylvania Angler magazine, and a fulltime illustration job for Samworth Publishing soon followed; the Smiths lived for a year on the Samworth estate in South Carolina as Ned illustrated the hunting and firearms books that Samworth produced.