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Articles

Christie Smith: “Long Term Connections”

  • By Ben Ari

  • September 2, 2020
     

Love Out Loud! I think that with everything that is going on we are all focused on fear and anxieties. Loving out loud raises your vibration. You are opening up your heart. You are not fearful about the world or what that means. You are living in the present. You are not holding back.

As a part of my series about the things we can do to remain hopeful and support each other during anxious times, I had the pleasure of interviewing Christie Smith.

At a young age, Christie was drawn to athletics. After attending Methodist College for Golf and being a part of three National Championships she enjoyed a 25-year career as an LPGA Golf Professional; then about seven years ago she discovered the power of art. Christie now uses her newfound love of creating art to foster human connection and inspire inner expression.

Thank you so much for doing this with us! Our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you share with us the backstory about what brought you to your specific career path?

I took an indirect path to get here but as a kid, I was always creative. Creativity has always been incorporated into my life. My golf career allowed me to be creative yet disciplined. My dream has always been to be creative in some capacity. The path I took to becoming an artist helped me because I learned how to have structure first. This allows me to be a successful artist because I feel like I have trained my whole life to be both an artist and a business owner.

Eventually, the desire to be an artist became more than the desire to be a golf pro. I am very thankful because my career in golf led me to become an artist at the right time in my life. I appreciate becoming an artist older in my life because I feel like I am better prepared for it. In golf, if I am going to compete I can’t just focus on hitting the ball, I have to proactive structure and then get creative. This is a discipline I have carried with me into my art career.

Is there a particular book that made a significant impact on you? Can you share a story or explain why it resonated with you so much?

The Untethered Soul by Michael A Singer. The book deals with internal dialogue. It talks about how everyone has levels of internal dialogue. The key is that the book teaches you that have to learn to make friends with your internal dialogue. This is especially important in golf because of its solo sport. I had already learned to make friends with this voice but this book helped me learn to control it. We are very self-critical beings but this book helps you to quiet down that self-critic so you can be present at the moment.

It was helpful with sports and now with art. It’s very easy to be critical of your art or think it’s not good enough. Learning to quiet that internal critic is helpful. I create art and don’t judge it or myself. It’s helped me to minimize conflict when it comes to having to sell my art as well. This gives me the freedom to create more. read full article

 

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‘How Artist and Gallery Owner Christie Smith Pivoted After COVID-19 Lockdown

  • Artist Christie Smith’s work fosters connection and creative expression.
    Jay Feldman
    VIP Contributor

“When I start a piece, the resin magically chooses its direction and I have to…allow the process to lead, just as the game unfolded,” says artist Christie Smith, owner of Unleashed Art Gallery.“Each painting results in a unique one-of-a-kind expression.”

After a successful twenty-three-year career as an LPGA golf professional, Smith pursued abstract expressionism and photography, which eventually led her to her own art gallery. Over the past decade, she has remained committed to the daily process of art and its technical improvements.

While she has experimented with different mediums and techniques on canvas, acrylic, and wood panels, the resin has become her favorite medium, due to the nature of creation. The mesmerizing process involves a two-part compound that hardens into a glossy finish. Once she pours the colors, she rapidly works to blend and coordinate the movement of the colors. Smith says of her daily inspiration, “Its characteristics and fluidity pose a dynamic which challenges me to perform with an edge of pressure. This taps into my competitive past as an LPGA golf professional. I prepare mentally for each individual piece of artwork, as I did prior to every competitive game.”

The COVID-19 Pivot


Like many artists and galleries, the COVID-19 lockdown provided time for innovative opportunities. But, for many, it was sink or swim. For Smith, she turned to her dedicated online following and focused on virtual viewings. “I feel the need to create for the sole purpose of connection. I want to use my artistic talents to give back to others who are in need,” says the artist of her deep relationship with her clientele. 

That giving back has translated to a donation of $1,000 to a nonprofit organization in Half Moon Bay, as well as fifteen pieces of artwork to an emergency room staff. Five of her large-scale custom pieces also hang at Navio, the restaurant within the Ritz-Carlton in Half Moon Bay. 

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Christie Smith: Seeing Light at the End of the Tunnel; 5 Reasons To Be Hopeful During This Corona Crisis

  • By Beau Henderson in Authority Magazine

  • Aug 23 · 7 min read
     

Love Out Loud! I think that with everything that is going on we are all focused on fear and anxieties. Loving out loud raises your vibration. You are opening up your heart. You are not fearful about the world or what that means. You are living in the present. You are not holding back.

As a part of my series about the things we can do to remain hopeful and support each other during anxious times, I had the pleasure of interviewing Christie Smith.

At a young age, Christie was drawn to athletics. After attending Methodist College for Golf and being a part of three National Championships she enjoyed a 25-year career as an LPGA Golf Professional; then about seven years ago she discovered the power of art. Christie now uses her newfound love of creating art to foster human connection and inspire inner expression.

Thank you so much for doing this with us! Our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you share with us the backstory about what brought you to your specific career path?

I took an indirect path to get here but as a kid, I was always creative. Creativity has always been incorporated into my life. My golf career allowed me to be creative yet disciplined. My dream has always been to be creative in some capacity. The path I took to becoming an artist helped me because I learned how to have structure first. This allows me to be a successful artist because I feel like I have trained my whole life to be both an artist and a business owner.

Eventually, the desire to be an artist became more than the desire to be a golf pro. I am very thankful because my career in golf led me to become an artist at the right time in my life. I appreciate becoming an artist older in my life because I feel like I am better prepared for it. In golf, if I am going to compete I can’t just focus on hitting the ball, I have to proactive structure and then get creative. This is a discipline I have carried with me into my art career.

Is there a particular book that made a significant impact on you? Can you share a story or explain why it resonated with you so much?

The Untethered Soul by Michael A Singer. The book deals with internal dialogue. It talks about how everyone has levels of internal dialogue. The key is that the book teaches you that have to learn to make friends with your internal dialogue. This is especially important in golf because of its solo sport. I had already learned to make friends with this voice but this book helped me learn to control it. We are very self-critical beings but this book helps you to quiet down that self-critic so you can be present at the moment.

It was helpful with sports and now with art. It’s very easy to be critical of your art or think it’s not good enough. Learning to quiet that internal critic is helpful. I create art and don’t judge it or myself. It’s helped me to minimize conflict when it comes to having to sell my art as well. This gives me the freedom to create more. read full article

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‘I really want to do some art’: New art gallery unleashed in Laguna Beach

  • By LILLY NGUYEN STAFF WRITER 
    JULY 8, 20206:03 PM
     

It’s a pretty simple story.

Christie Smith sighs but laughs as she explains how she was a professional golfer for over 20 years with the Ladies Professional Golf Assn. Then one day, she woke up and decided, “I really want to do some art.”

“From an early age, that probably would have been my preference — to be somewhat in the art world — but sports came so easy that that was what allowed me to have an education, basically,” she said. “So, I utilized the sports and followed that direction, and it led to that career.”

“But deep down inside, I always wanted to do something creative,” Smith added.

She made the transition to becoming an artist seven years ago after she retired, deciding to go full time into learning and exploring her craft.

Smith describes herself as an abstract expressionist and photographer, but she has experimented with different mediums and worked with canvas, acrylic and wood panels. Her favorite medium to work with, though, is resin, which Smith said she feels has more dimension than an acrylic painting.

And now, she’s moving onto the next step of her artistic journey by moving her gallery, Unleashed Art Gallery, down from Half Moon Bay to Laguna Beach. Full Article

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Small Business Owner Pivots During COVID-19: Art Gallery Owner and Artist Goes Virtual 


Former LPGA Golf Professional Turned Art Gallery Owner and Artist, Christie Smith, pivoted her gallery to offer virtual viewings that have turned into a rise in sales.

HALF MOON BAY, CA (May 2020) – While Coronavirus has caused irreparable damage to many small businesses, there is a glimmer of hope coming out of Half Moon Bay. Small business owner, Christie Smith is a story of art and inspiration. Even though her gallery is closed to physical visitors, she has been utilizing a small but engaged Instagram community and video calls to continue to sell her art. She has actually spent more time packing and sending orders than she did when the gallery was previously open. At a young age, Christie Smith was drawn to athletics. After attending, Methodist College for Golf and being a part of three National Championships she enjoyed a 25-year career as an LPGA Golf Professional.

Then about seven years ago she discovered the power of art. She
followed her passions and became an artist and gallery owner. “My artwork is an inner expression of who I am that connects me to others through my artwork. I feel the need to create, to create for the sole purpose of connection… to myself and to others. I want to use my artistic talents to give back to others who are in need.” more

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How Small Art Businesses Can Pivot During COVID-19

  • ianmonroe

  • May 6, 2020

While Coronavirus has caused irreparable damage to many small businesses, there is a glimmer of hope coming out of Half Moon Bay. Small business owner, Christie Smith, the owner of Unleashed Art Gallery, is a story of art and inspiration. Even though her gallery is closed to physical visitors, she has been utilizing a small but engaged online community and video calls to continue to sell her art. She has actually spent more time packing and sending orders than she did when the gallery was previously open. A lot can be learned from her story.

Activating Small, Engaged Online Community

When it comes to shifting from in-person to online communities, numbers do not always matter. While you may think that you need a large following to transition sales online that is simply not true. Having less but more engaged followers is actually more advantageous when it comes to turning followers into clients.

Virtual Showings

Just because someone can’t travel to physically see your artwork in person, it does not mean they won’t buy it. Christie Smith, pivoted her gallery to offer virtual viewings of her artwork via FaceTime and has actually seen a rise in sales more

 

Christie Smith is Showing Artists That They Can Follow Their Passion to Financial Success 

  • MyitSolutions 

  • May 21, 2020

 

After spending 25 years as an LPGA golf professional, Christie Smith transitioned into the world of art about seven years ago. Not only is she recognized as an inspiring and talented artist, but she is also the owner of the Unleashed Art Gallery in Half Moon Bay in Northern California. Despite the Coronavirus pandemic, she has been thriving in 2020. By offering virtual showings of her gallery and artwork she has been able to continue her business operations.

Right now she is donating 20% of all sales to her Half Moon Bay community through her Church which is helping to provide emergency meals and other services. She also donated 15 pieces of her work to emergency room nurses that are serving those on the front lines. Through her art, she is fostering human connection and bringing joy to those during these dark times.

“My artwork is an inner expression of who I am that connects me to others through my artwork. I feel the need to create, to create for the sole purpose of connection… to myself and to others. I want to use my artistic talents to give back to others who are in need.” more

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Running an Art Gallery Business from Home: Inspiration from Christie Smith

  • By. Amanda Cosenza

  • May 30, 2020

Even though these are not the brightest of times, there is still some light in the world, and success stories are still emerging. Former LPGA golf professional turned art gallery owner and artist, Christie Smith is using her newfound love of creating art to foster human connection and inspire inner expression. Seven years ago, after spending a 25 plus year career as an LPGA Golf Professional, Christie was drawn to create art. Shortly after starting with photography and other mediums, she became the owner of an art gallery and found her passion for resin art.

“My artwork is an inner expression of who I am that connects me to others through my artwork. I feel the need to create, to create for the sole purpose of connection… to myself and to others. I want to use my artistic talents to give back to others who are in need,” says Christie. more

Art Interview: Christie Smith – Inspiration That Resinates, Or Wedged Into A New Niche

  • June 12, 2020

  • Bruce Dennill

 

Gallery owner and artist Christie Smith uses her newfound love of creating art to foster human connection and inspire inner expression. The only art gallery in Half Moon Bay, California, Unleashed Art Gallery offers a chance for visitors to see her work in person. Since she is unable to have visitors in the store she has started virtual viewings with an engaged online community. She also recently donated several pieces of her work to frontline healthcare workers.

 

What sort of training have you received and how important do you think it is to seek training, in terms of learning first principles and refining techniques?

I am a retired LPGA golf professional. I have been an artist for seven years. My previous career demanded a high level of discipline and continued learning. I’ve always had an intensely focused approach. I pay attention to what works, and I adjust quickly to improve my execution. This has instilled in me the ability to learn art in a non-traditional way. I consider myself to be self-taught. I’ve spent many hours researching techniques and materials, experimenting with different products for the best results. Every piece I create teaches me about the potential to enhance and improve my techniques. My motto is “experience and adjust”. I control the things I can with the prepping process and my material choices. I am not a visual artist; I am more of an emotional artist. I choose colours based on my emotions. When I start an artwork, the resin magically chooses its direction and flow.This is the most exciting aspect as each painting becomes a unique one-of-a-kind expression of art.

 

What is your principal medium, and why did you choose it?

Resin has become my principal medium. Using resin has pushed me through my process of evolution the most. I love the challenge of it being a time-sensitive material that doesn’t allow hesitation as in traditional painting. So what I do has an element of movement, freedom and pressure. I am also drawn to the depth of colour and dimension of the artwork, based on the various types of pigments that I use. And I love the versatility of resin as it can also be used in 3D artwork. read more

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Art for the Greater Good

  • By. Art Daily.com

  • Wednesday, July 15, 2020

The Latin phrase “Ars Gratia Artis” does not apply to Christie Smith, an artist located in Half Moon Bay, California.

In her early life, Smith focused on sports and athletics, even securing a scholarship in basketball and softball in northern Alabama. After an injury left her unable to play her chosen sports, she found golf. She excelled quickly at the sport and transferred to Methodist University, graduating with a BS in Business Administration and Professional Golf Management.

After spending 23 years as an LPGA golf professional, Christie left the field and transitioned to art full-time 7 years ago. She now owns her own studio in Half Moon Bay called Unleashed Art Gallery. Christie transitioned into the world of art about seven years ago.

Not only does Christie create her own work in her gallery, but she uses her past experience as a golf instructor to teach others art as well. Christie didn’t become an artist just for the sake of becoming an artist. Instead she wanted to connect with people on a deeper level.

“I want my art to touch a place in their soul and inspire them to create, dream, imagine the life they want to experience,” Christie says. She also says her artwork is an inner expression of who she is and she connects to others through her art. read more
 

Local artist unveils new installation at Ritz 

  • By Carol Hunter

  • May 16, 2019

 

Walk into Unleashed Gallery on Main Street and you will find yourself surrounded by dramatic art pieces of vivid, glossy hues swirling as if in motion.

The gallery’s owner is Christie Smith, a professional golf instructor-turned-artist who has found a new passion in abstract art. Last week, the Redwood City artist unveiled a new installation of her work at Navio, the refined restaurant at the Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay.

Joel Costa, director of sales and marketing at the luxury resort, said that this is the first art installation of its kind at the restaurant. read more

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A Portrait of a Pro Golfer turned Artist

  • Climate Magazine

  • January 2019

"Her powerful swing and form translated into a 280 yard drive. To put that in perspective, Tiger Woods can drive the ball on average 285 yards."

 

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