Joop Smits was born in Eindhoven, Holland in 1938. He graduated from the Eindhoven Academy in 1961, completing his formal studies. He has been engaged in drawing and painting as his primary means of creative expression since childhood. Early influences include regional landscape artists, the works of the Old Masters and the countryside surrounding his boyhood home. In 1992 he left for Ireland where he built a studio. Here his enduring relationship with landscape found a new expression. In 2002 he built a second studio in Mallorca, one of the Balearic Islands of Spain where the southern light inspires him to more colourful paintings.