Clara Batton Smith started out in the theatre world designing costumes for Chicago Children's Theatre, Northwestern University , Chicago Symphony Orchestra and various film companies. She started using some collage techniques in her costume rendering and realized she enjoyed making the renderings better than any other part of the design process. Eventually her renderings turned into her artwork. She now makes mixed media pieces inspired by various showgirls, religious icons, musicians and fairy tales. Her work has been shown in Illinois , New York , California , Florida and Melbourne, Australia notably with Chicago Artists' Collective and featured in the House of Blues Hotel.
Her illustrations can be seen in Short and Scary published by Black Dog Books and Guardian Angel Kids on-line magazine. Her first children's book, Mid Summer's Dance written by Bill Kirk was released in 2011 by Guardian Angel Publishing. Love moved Clara to Melbourne , Australia where she has fallen madly in love with koalas.