Frans Mortelmans was born in Antwerp, Belgium on May 1, 1865. He was the brother of the famous composer, Lodewijk Mortelmans. He was the son of a printer, Karel and his mother's name was Francisca Isabella. He married Marie Fontaine in June 1897. Mortelmans was a painter of still-life, landscapes, flowers and portraits. He was also a watercolorist. However, his most collectible and sought after pictures are his still-life, and flower oil paintings.
He studied at the Royal Academy of Fine Art in Antwerp from 1876 through 1886 and at the High Institute of Fine Arts from 1887 through 1891. He was the student of the famed artists and master teachers, L. Schaefels and C. Verlat. He ultimately became a professor at the Berchem School of Fine Arts in 1901. Two of his most famous students were Joris Minne and Antoon Mastboom. He became an Honorary Director of the Berchem School of Art and Painting in Antwerp.
Today, Frans Mortelmans paintings can be found in many private collections worldwide. Public collections include The Museum of Fine Arts in Antwerp, The Museum of Fine Arts in Courtrai, Saint-Nichols and Ostend, Belgium. His works can also be found in the Antwerp Town Hall, and the Museum of Flemish Cultural Life.