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The Bells of July - Painting of Albritton Bell Tower


   A depiction by W. Chris Smith '92 of the Albritton Bell Tower at the 4th of July on the Texas A&M University campus, College Station, Texas.

   The Albritton Bell Tower on the A&M campus is one of the University's most-individualistic and recognizable landmarks. Visible and audible miles from the center of campus where it resides, the Bell Tower has shaped the atmosphere of the campus since it was introduced in the 1980s. This image is one of W. Chris Smith's earliest photo-realistic efforts, created while he was a freshman. Early in his career, Smith perceived that he needed absolute mastery of photorealism (also known as hyper-realism) in order to have the skills necessary for the full breadth of fine art projects he had in mind for the future. To this end, he set out to identify and render compelling scenes around him as practice to hone his skills at realistic painting. As a student at A&M, one of the first scenes which caught his attention was the recently-erected Albritton Bell Tower during the fireworks of July 4th, in 1987. Although he changed the angles of the building's orientation to make the depiction more dramatic, the image retained its integrity, and it has since frequently been mistaken for an actual mechanically-created photograph.

After completion of the painting, Smith showed it around to various A&M offices, in hopes of gaining professional contacts and freelancing job offers. Friends of Ford Albritton (donor of the tower's building funds and its namesake) rapidly became aware of the painting's existence and purchased it as a gift to him.
 
Smith was later amused to find that shortly after showing this picture around campus, the TAMU Alumni Center released a promotional photograph which they had artificially photo-manipulated to show the Williams Alumni Center Building with fireworks exploding overhead. Immitation is the finest flattery!
The Bells of July by Silver Smith -- copyright 2000, all rights reserved.

Signed, Limited Edition print reproduction from the
original acrylic painting by Chris "Silver" Smith '92
(Original painting in the collection of Ford Albritton)
   
   These fine arts prints are strictly limited to an edition of 800 prints, each with an image size of 14.75" by 25.5". The original acrylic on masonite painting was created in 1988. Own this piece of history today -- this is Smith's earliest publication and not commonly available! (Scroll to bottom of page for purchase information.)
 
Note: the actual prints are of much better image quality than this online representation. Due to the dark coloration of the image, the scanner output does not really do this particular print justice.
   

About The Artist:

   W. Chris Smith grew up in College Station, Texas, and after high school attended Texas A&M University, graduating with a bachelor's degree in Environmental Design from the College of Architecture in 1992. As a student, Smith was awarded A&M's highest competition art honors at Artfest, A&M's annual student art competition, in 1991, garnering not only Best of Show and 1st Place in Painting, but also a 2nd in Drawing and a 3rd in Mixed Media.

   After graduation, Smith was hired on by the University as professional support staff, and he served as Manager of Administration & Services at the Cartographics Service Unit (Cartographics) until October of 1996, when he moved on to new opportunities in Dallas. During his employ at TAMU, Smith supplied professors and authors with numerous maps, scientific illustrations, and other commercial artworks which have been reproduced in books and professional journals all over.

   Most notably, during his employ at A&M, he also conceptualized, authored and marketed the TAMU Clip Art Disk, containing the official University trademarks and traditional illustrations which have since been reproduced many thousands of times over on products, newsletters, and elsewhere. Smith also authored the Texas A&M University Map With Points of Interest, published by the TAMU Press, as well as the smaller A&M maps given out by various A&M offices. Smith was the designer of the shield logo used by the 12th Man Foundation.

   Smith has been employed by Verizon (formerly GTE) since moving from College Station. He has served as Manager of Interactive Media Publications, handling design and support of the many parts of the SuperPages.com website for the past year. Active in his church and other local associations, he also continues to develop his artistic skills, occasionally exhibiting in various shows or exclusively solo.

Visit the website of W. Chris Smith for more information about the artist.

   

   

Payments:

We Accept Personal Checks or You May Pay With Credit Card or Bank Transaction Via PayPal
PayPal is a service allowing you a secure way to make credit card payments online, or to directly transfer cash from your bank account online. Price of print includes Texas State Sales Tax and Shipping & Handling. Prints are shipped in high-quality, sturdy mailing tubes.

The Bells of July - Limited Edition Signed Numbered Print - $75.00 ea.
Click here to purchase: Make payments with PayPal - it
         (sales tax and shipping included)

You may also pay by personal check. Click here for printable order form which you may print and mail to us with your payment. We will ship your order after your check or PayPal payment has cleared.

Shipping: we ship via UPS ground or by US Post Priority.

Questions? Email us at: argentum-AT-verizon-DOT-net

   

   
 

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