Kay Smith – Researches history for her projects during the Wings of Freedom Tour – Monterey, California – 5/16/14

Kay tells me visiting with veterans and seeing the majestic bomber aircrafts used during WWII at the Monterey Airport was one of the highlights of her life.  Hearing the engines power up, feeling the thrust created from the engines propellers and seeing the B-24 & 25 take to the sky was amazing.  She said she came all the way from Chicago to view this display and a gentleman opened the way for a picture opportunity with Betty Jane, a P-51 Mustang.

In her gracious fashion, she asked an older fellow if he was a veteran.  The man responded yes and she thanked him for his service.  He in turn thanked her for shaking his hand.

About Illinois Artist Laureate Kay Smith

After completing my studies at the School of the Art Institute, I worked as an illustrator. As the 1976 Bicentennial approached there was a fever of interest in American history. In 1971, I was asked to illustrate a book on the American Revolutionary War period which required me to travel to historic locations to paint the actual scenes. As my travels crossed and crisscrossed the paths of the patriots, I entered their lives and was forever caught in the inescapable skeins of history and was thrust into the role of historical painter. What began as a single assignment has grown over the past 40-plus years into the largest collection of American historical-site paintings ever created by a single artist. To see these historical works and to learn more about The American Legacy Collection, please visit my website at: www.kaysmithartist.com. The American Legacy Collection is a dramatic panorama of this country's historical places and its defining moments. My original watercolors chronicle 500 years of the American experience and preserve with an artist's palette our American heritage.

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