Thursday, August 11, 2011

David Adrian Smith Glass Artist

I would conceder Dave Smith to be the best Glass Sign Artist working today.
Here is his biography

Dave Smith is a name that has become synonymous in sign-writing circles with high quality, hand crafted reverse glass signs and decorative mirrors. It is fair to say that now-a-days this is the main thrust of his work. There is, however, more to his story.

His career in sign-writing began in 1984, when he left Westlands School in Torquay, aged 16 and was apprenticed for 5 years with Gordon Farr & two associates. These gentleman were traditional sign-writers, who had come up through the ranks and Gordon, in particular had an almost uncanny ability to paint letters, accurately laid out, without even a preliminary sketch. Under their tutelage, Dave became an accomplished draftsman, accurate letter painter & talented pictorialist.

In 1992, Dave set up his own sign business in Torquay dealing every aspect of the sign trade from vehicle graphics to 3D installations but always with his own stamp of unique design and pristine execution.

In the same year, on a visit to New Zealand, he had the immense good fortune to be invited to Wilmington, California to meet Rick Glawson & his crew of the famous “Fine Gold Sign Company”. Rick, who is sadly no longer with us, was universally regarded by his peers as the godfather of gilding, with a reputation for sharing his encyclopedic knowledge of glass decoration with eager students of the craft. The two became firm friends & Dave thereafter attended the California conclave of Letterheads every year. This is a gathering of talented sign artists, carvers, muralists & gold leaf experts. They further fueled Dave’s passion for creating elaborate, ornate mirrors & reverse glass signs of distinction. At the peak of “his sign company” success, Dave sold the business, to concentrate more fully on gilding, painting & acid-etching glass, adding brilliant cutting, so that he could fully replicate the Victorian glass work he admires so much. From home in Torquay, Devon, UK, he continues his quest to uncover & share yet more knowledge of the processes involved.

Dave has never lost sight of the debt he owes to Gordon Farr, Rick Glawson & others too numerous to mention, for sharing their knowledge and passion with him. So, in return, he shares the fruits of his study with his many friends, old & new, in the sign trade, through courses, step by step instruction and one-to-one chats on the phone or internet.

He is supported, unwaveringly by his wife Mel and his daughters, Hannah, Lauren & Millie, who, tolerate his long work hours, frequent trips abroad and the steady stream of visitors through the family home, who come to marvel at the work & learn. For this, and for them, Dave is eternally grateful.


















29 comments:

  1. Thanks for the photos. These are great! There are also some awesome signs in salt lake city. It all depends on your style though. How do you get into the sign business?

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  2. That is some high quality glass work. I remember when I was younger, I used to actually watch a man who went to my church make glass into cups and vases. Amazing! Nowadays, you just hire an Arizona sign company to do the work, and your photos show how well the art has been preserved!

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  3. These are great! I wish that I could find someone to do these types of custom signs in Florida. If you know of anyone, please let me know. Thanks for sharing these photos.

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  4. Thats job well done to David Smith, clearly with passion and dedication he will succeed in glass design or Interior Glass Doorsendeavors.

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  5. Wow, this is some really incredible looking work right here. I wish we had more of these kinds of signs in Kelowna! It would really give the city a good lift.

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  6. Excellent work with these signs. I can tell how creative you are and that you put the work in. Keep it up!

    David | Signs Toronto

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  7. I can see that you are putting a lot of efforts into your blog. Keep posting the good work.Some really helpful information in there. Nice to see your site. Thanks!

    Sign Company NYC

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  9. A great article indeed and a very detailed, realistic and superb analysis, of this issue, very nice write up, Thanks.

    Custom Signs

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  10. Where is the best place to get custom glass in Tacoma wa? I am hoping to find a place soon. If you have any information let me know.

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  11. These are pretty cool. I think it would be nice to get some custom signs in Los Alamitos, CA. I wouldn't mind having that over my business.

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  12. This would be so helpful for my business! I'm working out how much the costs will be. Getting your name visible all around on signs goes a long way.
    Celine | http://www.abcstamp.com/category.aspx?categoryID=10

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  13. These signs look amazing and I love that they are customized! I have been looking all over to customize signs in Mississauga. I am opening my own business soon and one of the last things I need to purchase is a sign to place on our building. http://www.newstylesigns.com/

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  14. Wow, these are so beautiful. I'm quite the artist myself, but have never done any work in glass. I love painting, and sculpting but I have yet to work in stained glass. Maybe I should take a class on how to do it.
    Edmond Vandergraff | http://www.soundglass.com/residential/custom/

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  15. I really like the idea of getting a custom made glass sign. It seems like a good piece of signage to be me. Are a lot of businesses getting this done lately.

    http://www.markgreshamsigns.com.au

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  16. These are beautiful signs. I would love to have a glass sign made. I wonder how much they cost.
    Ron | http://visualidsource.com

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  17. My son loves those neon lit signs that you often find inside family restaurants. I would love to get some custom lit sign made for him. The trick is finding the right color and saying?

    bryanflake1984| http://www.snydersigns.com/about-u/

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  18. I also think that custom glass signs look quite sharp. If I ever open a business, that is definitely the way that I want to go. Thanks for sharing all of this wonderful information.

    http://www.abcstamp.com/category.aspx?categoryID=10

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  19. Now this looks really cool. Do you do full window designs? Like the front window of a shop?

    Anita Mas | http://www.demars-signs.com/

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  20. I really like the look of antique signs, like those in the photos. My business is expanding, and I think that we need some new signs. Maybe I can find a company that can reproduced an aged look.

    http://www.sierrasignsaz.com/company.php

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  22. My friend wants to get some custom signs for his business. I think that something glass would look nice. It would go well with the style of his store and the type of appearance he is going for.
    Gary Puntman | http://www.signsinoneday.com/signs.html

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  23. This is really cool. I have a start up business and was looking for a way to make a custom sign. I love the glass, because it just looks so original. I would love to learn how to do this. http://www.snydersigns.com/about-u/

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  24. Those signs look amazing! I would love to get something like in front of my bike shop. We only have a vinyl sign up right now which looks really unprofessional. I think something like this could really boost our business! http://www.swirlingsilks.com/banners.html

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  26. Great article!

    Ken
    ken@signsvisual.com
    http://www.signsvisual.com

    ReplyDelete
  27. Hello,
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