Robert McVittie was born in England where he attended the Thames Nautical Training College. He entered the Merchant Navy, working on freighters before emigrating to Canada in 1957. He worked as a miner in Ontario, where he began painting.
In 1964 he moved to the west coast of Canada to live in North Vancouver and later West Vancouver. He worked for a few years as a graphic artist for the Hydro and Power Authority. Then he turned to painting full time.
His medium is oil, his style realism, and his subjects are almost exclusively marine, including historic sailing ships, navel and fishing boats as well as freighters and sea life (killer whales). His work is noted for its accuracy, it is s
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