Luther Smith lives and works in Fort Worth, Texas. He was born in rural Tishomingo County, Mississippi where he picked cotton and learned to fish and hunt. In 1960 he moved with his family to Aurora, Illinois. As an undergraduate he attended the University of Illinois at Champaign/Urbana and for graduate school he studied at the Rhode Island School of Design in Providence. He currently is a Professor of Art at Texas Christian University in Fort Worth.
His early photographs feature friends, family and people he encountered. For some of his night images he used infrared film. After moving to Texas in 1983 he began a series of black and white photographs on North Texas High School Rodeos.
Following his rodeo images, Smith began to photograph landscapes
using 8 x 10 inch and 7 x 17 inch view cameras. The Trinity River images and Photographs of the Southern United States came from this series. He also works with 6 x 17 cm panoramic, 6 x 7 cm, and 4 x 5 inch cameras.