A native of Mobile, Alabama, Les Thompson discovered drawing in the second grade at Woodcock Elementary School, particularly drawing Gloucester Schooners. One of these was included in the Jaycee Art Auction to benefit the former Fine Arts Museum of the South (now known as the Mobile Museum of Art). Les was twenty when he traveled to Madrid, Spain, as a foreign language student from Auburn University. He obtained a BA degree in 1990, and while a student at Auburn, took many art classes and learned various techniques and important art history. Through the Alabama-Auburn Abroad program, he attended the University of Madrid for six weeks in 1976. This experience was a catalyst for his art, as he toured the Prado and was inspired by many artistic and cultural influences. Les was selected by the Alabama State Council on the Arts as a Resource Artist, receiving two different special project grants.
During the past 37 years, Les has been involved in many juried shows, private and group exhibitions, and has won several awards for his artwork. His work is in various public, corporate and private collections such as Museum of the City of Mobile, Mobile Museum of Art, State of Alabama Archives, Alabama State House, Old Courthouse Museum in Vicksburg, Mississippi, The Bienville Club of Mobile, AmSouth Bank of Mobile, Alabama Power Company, Exxon USA (New Orleans, Louisiana), Providence Hospital, University of South Alabama, Ezell Sharbrough Law Firm, Montgomery Renaissance Hotel, Retirement Systems of Alabama Battle House Tower, Marriott Battle House Hotel Permanent Collection, and Marriott Renaissance Riverview Plaza Hotel.