Tim Smith – Animation /Design / Visual Arts Worker

I was born and raised in the nearby village of Llanharan, leaving when I was 18 to study English and History at Goldsmiths University in London. On completing my studies I worked in several bookshops in the Big Smoke before the ‘hiraeth’ took hold and I returned to Wales in 1994. It was at this time that my life took on a new direction when I discovered a hidden talent for Celtic art and design. After a few simple designs I was asked by my grandmother to illustrate a book she was writing on the history of the Welsh people. This led to a number of high profile exhibitions around South Wales and the skills and experience gained in this period led to my joining the team at Valley and Vale in 1999. Initially I was employed to do graphic design for the various departments at Valley and Vale but soon found myself running art projects at various schools in the area. Over the years my field of activity has expanded and as well as visual art projects I have produced a number of books and films, and have recently made a number of animated films. I’m a very versatile person, always willing to try something new, and the variety of work I do makes my work very exciting and challenging. I think the fact that almost everything I do has been self taught brings an individuality and freshness to the work created.

I have a great passion for the culture and people of South Wales, and I feel the work we do at Valley and Vale has a tremendously positive impact on the community. This community has not always been dealt the best of hands and the sheer enthusiasm and determination to overcome this never ceases to amaze and inspire me.

When I’m not enjoying myself in work I’m usually enjoying myself elsewhere. I live in the Garw Valley and I’m often seen walking the beautiful hills around here with my little dog Chico before popping in the ‘Braichy’ for a pint or five and a chat with the locals. Like many who have ‘discovered’ the Garw I have fallen in love with the stunning mountain landscape and the people who live here. I also have a great love of music and have been organising live music events in South Wales with my brother for nearly twenty years now. I dj at our events and if you’re ever at one you’ll hear anything from ACDC to Irish Folk. I also play the guitar and am working on my long awaited solo album which should be in the shops by Christmas 2015.

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