Robert Towson


Robert arrived in Pensacola as a US Navy Illustrator/Draftsman attached to the Electronic Warfare School in1979. Prior to the Navy, he attended Murray St. Univ. in the BFA program. After leaving the Navy, Robert was hired as the fashion illustrator for the Gayfers Store Group, working out of the advertising office at the Cordova Mall store. He left Gayfers to work as an advertising artist for the Pensacola News Journal until the winter of 1985 when he began a long and eclectic journey as a freelance artist painting everything from signs to airbrushing RV’s, cars, motorcycles and of course tens of thousands of T-shirts. Setting aside the airbrush in 2002, Robert returned to his first love, that of fine art, and illustration. One of his oils, THE WOUNDED, was juried into America’s Top 100 in 2011. Robert has won several local and regional competitions including designing the winning posters for The Great Gulf Coast Arts Festival 2000, Pensacola Jazz Fest 2001,2005 and the Gulf Shores National Shrimp Festival 2014, 2017, and 2019. Several of his works hang in private and corporate collections, including an 11ft x 5ft mural on permanent display at Wind Creek Casino and Resort.

Artist statement

Some of my earliest memories involve creating art in some fashion; on the walls or in the bottom of a bowl of chocolate pudding. As my work has evolved I feel even more compelled to push the boundaries of what I’m comfortable with by experimentation, trial, and error to capture the mood, the essence of my subject. Light is the ever-elusive element and the challenge that I seek to express in all my work; for me, it is the very existence of color and therefore, life. Equally important to me, is “the story” in my work, which I’m willing to initiate but leave the viewer to conclude- if a conclusion is to be had.