Why Raymond became an art student at 72

TAFE student Raymond Atkins started studying art aged 72

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PICTURE PERFECT: Raymond Atkins believes it's never too late to start following a dream. Pictured with one of his artworks.

PICTURE PERFECT: Raymond Atkins believes it's never too late to start following a dream. Pictured with one of his artworks.


After an accident put Raymond into a coma in his 20s, the Greystanes art student said it's important to live life to the full.


GREYSTANES resident Raymond Atkins knows how important it is to live life to the full, so he has decided to to study art at the age of 72.

The NSW resident never really thought he would find himself studying art, but said a serious car accident which put him into a coma for 21 days when he was 22 taught him the importance of making the most of life.

"The accident taught me a lot about how short life is, which is why all these years later I've decided to broaden my skill set and learn something new."

Raymond has already completed a diploma of arts and advanced diploma of arts at NSW Napean TAFE and is now in the process of completing a bachelore of arts degree at Federation University, in partnership with NSW TAFE.

"I've always enjoyed art as a hobby, but my TAFE teachers have helped me develop the skills to be able to pursue my hobby as a career," he said.

Raymond has a strong eye for detail and draws inspiration from local sites around Parramatta - which he uses to help him create printed etchings and watercolour paintings.

Locations which have inspired works include St John's Cathedral and the Parramatta River pedestrian bridge.

He has converted half of his garage, has had his work displayed at various local exhibitions and is a committee member of the Parramatta Arts Society.

TAFE NSW Head Teacher in Visual Arts, Cath Barcan said the Visual Arts course offered students the opportunity to learn new practical skills.

"Raymond is a great example of how TAFE NSW helps career changers or those looking to develop their practical skills in a visual arts course that is designed to be hands on,'" she said.

"TAFE NSW teachers work and maintain relationships across the arts industry, which is a great way for our students to develop employment connections."

  • To find out more about studying at TAFE call 131-601.

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