About Ashvin Harrison
Ashvin Harrison is an Internationally acclaimed Australian artist living in Brisbane, Australia.
Ashvin’s truely unique artwork creations stem from his creative made up and self taught techniques. Ashvin uses charcoal dust, oil paint and splashes of acrylic, combining them into artworks that are designed to capture the beauty of everyday encounters, feelings and fantasies. Harrison’s unique style combined with his keen attention to detail has led to rapid global popularity since becoming an artist in 2017.
Ashvin’s unique art style has been featured in multiple magazine articles, TV shows, news articles and catalogs around the world. Ashvin’s paintings are held in private and corporate collections in 40+ countries and 100+ cities. He continues to explore deeper and wider into his artistic mind and create works which examine human condition and purpose in life. Ashvin uses his previous negative life experiences and his conditions such as misophonia and PTSD to power his emotional creative drive.
Today, Ashvin creates artworks on a daily bases with inspiration drawing from the world around him. Ashvin also composes orchestral works with a recent creation set for performance in California, USA.
BIOGRAPHY- School and Work Life
Ashvin Harrison was born in Elizabeth, a working class town north of Adelaide, Australia. From the age of three he lived in Mackay, Townsville, Brisbane and Logan before moving to Toowoomba at age 16. Ashvin changed schools eight times, dropping out briefly in grade 10 to become an apprentice chef and eventually dropping out again in year 12 to work in hairdressing. He received high grades in schooling as he naturally picked up most things quite easily. However, he would often skip school in his high school years.
“My work life is a mixed bag of lollies, with a hole in it!”
From a Young Age
Ashvin worked from age 14 and throughout some years would often apply for any job he could get just to pay rent and buy food. He would try any role and enjoyed a good challenge. Though, he often became bored as soon as things felt repetitive. Ashvin started with a paper run role, then soon after gained a job serving customers at Mc Donalds. This service job set his up for life as he developed great work ethic and strong communication skills.
After being pressured by one of his parents, Ashvin dropped out of school. At this age of 15 years, he took a job as a kitchen hand. After three weeks, he was offered an apprenticeship as a chef. He later quit after being continually bullied by an older chef. Ashvin worked in a small cafe for a short while. Then he convinced his father to allow him to enrol back in high school in grade 11.
Ashvin moved to Toowoomba, changing schools half way through yr 11. Ashvin lived in a youth hostel where he met some interesting people. These interesting characters helped him to grow a thicker skin. Ashvin then dropped out of school in early yr12 and quit his casual job to take up a role in hairdressing. He enjoyed the work, but felt out of place.
At this point, He was living on his own. He then jumped from job to job, trying to make enough money to pay rent and dream of one day finishing his schooling as he had always disagreed with his family on the values of education. Ashvin worked as a trainee manager in fast food, cabinet maker (non-qualified) and cleaner. He finally gained access to complete a year 12 equivalent at a local university. The university provided a scholarship as a low income earner to complete the short course. Ashvin completed it and gained access to a teaching course at the university with a government debt agreement.
Whilst studying for four years at the university, Ashvin worked one, two and three jobs on the side to make ends meet. He worked as a toilet cleaner, beef abattoir cleaner, musician in various cover bands, gardener, kitchen maintenance for Kleenmaid, contract website builder for various small businesses, photographer for weddings, guitar tutor in schools, camp coordinator, Coles night shift shelf packer, Queensland Dams grounds person, taxi driver, service attendant, and various one day/week cash jobs.
Working For Google
A week before he was to complete his bachelors degree, Ashvin was called up and asked to work for Google Australia on a new project “Google Maps- Street View”. They had heard about his work ethic on a previous job and felt he had the skills they needed. Ashvin flew to Sydney, took the job and drove around Australia and New Zealand for a few years mapping every road he could find with three other regular mappers. Ashvin would also assist in technology issues, global PPE procedure solutions, media presentations and general other tasks in the office. It was an amazing experience and helped him to see more of the great diversity in nature and people.
Ashvin decided to leave Google after a new office job offer he turned down led him to think about his future goals. He took a role as an Investigation Officer for Child Safety. This job was one of the most mentally challenging jobs to date. Ashvin dealt with many horrifying and challenging cases. As much as he had been very ‘successful’ in the role, he felt that what was deemed as ‘success’ in assessing child safety cases was not always ‘success’ in his own eyes and heart. Too many cases left him wondering what more could be done to help.
Ashvin eventually quit after many months and went back to working for Google. At the same time, the one person in his family he had contact with (Ashvin’s Grandad) had died. Ashvin’s grandad was a great influence in his adult life. Unfortunately, Ashvin only saw him every few years as a child. His death completely knocked Ashvin around mentally and emotionally and is when Ashvin started to turn to art for positive focus and a sense of purpose.
Becoming a High School Teacher
After working for Google for another year, Ashvin quit again and starting a teaching career as he thought about his long term goals. He started full-time teaching in drama, math and media. Ashvin felt he could help students with both their studies and also inspiration towards a positive focus on life. He would also draw each night as a way to keep happy and enjoy a side challenge.
After a year as a teacher, Ashvin stepped up into a Head of Department role. This was a challenging role as he had only ever been in small management roles for fast food, retail and once at Google for a small mapping team. Ashvin enjoyed the new challenge initially, though didn’t feel he had found his purpose as yet. He began to focus on his art after work and on weekends as he pondered on the purpose of his life. Ashvin started thinking it was time to change career and looked into becoming a truck driver or Geologtist. He even started taking truck driving lessons and enrolled in university for geology. However, at this time, he started selling his art online. Ashvin was shocked at how people liked what he was creating and seemed to want to pay for it.
Becoming An Artist
Finally, even with much advice to not do such, Ashvin decided to quit his teaching/HOD role and focus on being an artist. Ashvin felt it was worth taking a risk to do something he completely loved each day. He thought about going back to other job roles or trying something completely new- if being an artist didn’t work out. However, it took off and now Ashvin creates art everyday for people just like you around the world. At the same time as becoming a full-time artist, Ashvin moved from Toowoomba to Brisbane. Ashvin was inspired by the change and new energy of the area. This change inspired him as colour finally entered into his works in vivid splashes and splatters.
Now Ashvin aims to create daily the past, the present and the future of what he feels, sees and imagines as beauty in existence.
A Little More Personal
Ashvin is fortunate enough to pick up most things quite easily, so this has led him down many paths of interests. Ashvin can play various instruments including trumpet, guitar, bass, drums and has always found the piano rewarding to play. He enjoyed writing songs and orchestral pieces based off piano works. Ashvin can read music and transpose music to various instruments, which allowed him to create 4 large orchestral pieces in his 20s. Inspired by a friend (professional French Horn player), Ashvin regained interest in composing recently. He composes orchestral and ensemble works again with his first recent creation planned for performance by a brass septet ensemble in California, USA.