Tom Smith was born in 1918 in Toronto, Canada, but the next year went to live in Cardiff, the capital of Wales. He was educated at Ely in Wales and then returned to Canada for high school where he studied art. He took an apprenticeship as a steel and copper engraver before joining the armed forces in 1941. After the war he worked as a cartographer for seven years, before becoming a graphic artist, which he did for twenty seven years before retiring. He was a keen student of the Bible who also taught the need to put its teaching into practice. Hence the Ten Command Words.