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DOC employee showcases her hidden artistic side

Thursday, March 28, 2019

HOMINY, Okla -- Lisa Smiley is analytical and attention oriented. But this administrative programs officer at Dick Conner Correctional Center also has a newly discovered artistic side.

Lisa and some friends took one of those social painting classes, and she untapped a geyser of talent. Smiley said, “I knew I had a lot of fun with it. And I wanted to do it again.”

She did what many of us do. Smiley went to the internet to learn more. She said, “You can basically learn anything on the internet. Pretty much.”

Four years later, Dick Conner has become the “Louvre” of Osage County. Smiley joked, “I don’t know that any of my artwork will go for millions of dollars. It would be awesome. But I doubt it. But yeah. I did. I YouTubed my way into painting.”

She’s donated some work for fundraisers. Colleagues have even commissioned Lisa to paint for them.

Lisa prefers pencil over paint. And she also dabbles in dough. Smiley has been sculpting and decorating cakes for parties and weddings for more than a decade. She said, “I can sculpt in cake, but you give me clay and it turns out to be a mess!”

Art is her part time passion -- a healthy way to decompress from a demanding career in corrections.

Bright, colorful and happy, it’s not just her art, it is a way of life for this loyal ODOC employee. Smiley said, “I’m still learning. Still perfecting my craft.”

Her talent makes others beam. Lisa Smiley really lives up to her name.

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