Friday, July 24, 2009

William A. Smith's Coke Ads

You may recall seeing the Coke ad below in a previous post on William A. Smith, but that ad wasn't a one-shot job for the accomplished painter...

Smith's daughter, Kim, sent a scan of this great piece below, along with an amusing anecdote about what must surely have been one of her earliest professional modeling assignments:

"I was the model," wrote Kim, "along with my favorite stuffed animal (I still have it, and it is probably a poodle) whom I nevertheless called Lambsey-Dysey. After "Mares eat oats and does eat oats and little lambsey dysey".

"The third model was a man on whom I had a huge crush, very handsome, named Bob I-can't-remember-his-last-name-but-will. He played a doctor, and I am about 3 1/2 years old. The version of the ad I have is in Spanish, though it was also probably in English somewhere here. My hair color, and Lambsey-Dysey's was changed for the painting to brunette!"

Recently a third William A. Smith Coke ad surfaced... this time in the form of a piece of original art up for sale at Heritage Auctions.

I sent a note around to the Smith family members alerting them to the sale. Kathlin Smith was the first to reply. She identified her older brother Rick as having posed for the role of the usher standing at far-right of frame in the middle distance. "It’s actually amazing how much he looks like a young version of my father," wrote Kathlin.

When I asked Rick Smith if he recalled anything about posing for this ad he replied, "It's me alright but I was an ADHD kid, hated keeping still for any length of time so I may have repressed that particular adventure."

Rick adds, "Thanks for your interest in dad's work. I still think he was vastly underrated/underappreciated/under-recognized."

* Thanks to Charlie Allen for providing the top scan, Kim Smith for providing the middle scan, and Heritage Auctions for allowing me to use the bottom scan.

* My William A. Smith Flickr set

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