Albert Herman Schmidt attended the Art Institute of Chicago, studying with John Vanderpoel and Charles Browne. After four years at AIC, Schmidt began exhibiting there in 1908 and continued through 1924. Like most of his peers at the time, he sought further study in Europe and traveled to study at the Académie Julian in Paris. He studied paintings all over Europe, from the Old Masters to the Fauves. Schmidt returned to the United States during the height of American Impressionism and just before the Armory Show in 1913. In his oil and pastel paintings, lessons he learned from French Impressionism in terms of style, approach and subject matter, are displayed. He exhibited one of his French landscapes at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in 1911 and another painting at the National Academy of Design in 1914.
Schmidt traveled to the Southwest in 1921, visiting New Mexico and Arizona. Shortly after he took residency in Tesuque, New Mexico and had Santa Fe artist and builder William Penhallow Henderson, design and construct his home. Schmidt considered "design the only truly creative art, and he finds it in abundance suggested by the austere hills, the winding valleys and the native people inhabiting the country." His early paintings are in the manner of the French Impressionists, but he soon developed a modernist style with simplified, sometimes angular drawing, and a bright palette clearly influenced by the Fauves.
From 1924 through 1957, Schmidt exhibited in the group annual at the Museum of Fine Arts and was often on the annuals hanging committee. The "First Traveling Show of New Mexico Artists," which toured the country n 1941 and 1942 included Schmidt's work. He also had twelve solo exhibitions at the Museum of Fine Arts between 1928 and 1958. His work is in many public and private collections throughout the country including the Albuquerque Museum, the Museum of New Mexico, the American Embassy at the Vatican and at the Embassy in Prague.