Art (Night job)

Science (Day job)

Artist and Illustrator

Hello! my name is Tobin Florio, and I’m a paintaholic. It was obvious to me from an early age, that if I were to fulfill my most burning desire, it would be to spend my life painting, and that’s what I’ve been trying to do ever since.

Both of my maternal grandparents were artists, and a great inspiration. As a child I loved to explore their studios, wonderful worlds of colour and intrigue, a feast for the eyes shared with my brother and sister, both of whom are also artists.

I studied fine art for only 2 years, during which time it became clear that I would have to find a commercial purpose for my creativity, so I went on to study Illustration and animation at University. I graduated in 1999, and began a promising career with a successful design company, but after some years the work became less creative, and the London life style became overbearing. So I took a risk, I resigned, packed my bags and left the country looking for inspiration.

I found it in Italy, where I set up a studio and spent a couple of years just about scraping a living from my art, hopping from cafe to cafe, bar to bar, exhibiting wherever I could and selling quite well. It was a promising start and one of my most prolific periods. A great experience.

I eventually settled in Norwich, just 30 miles from the village where I grew up. I became we, and we found a house and made a beautiful home. At the end of the garden I built myself a studio, custom made to fit my needs. It’s a fantastic space which I try to make use of as much as possible.

An artist's studio, atmospheric interior photos and exterior views in both the sun and the snow

Recently, we became three, so now my time in the studio is mostly spent making glitter monsters and painting pebbles with my beautiful and magnificently messy daughter. 
I’m pretty sure that once I am able to fully commit to painting again, I will have an eager and able assistant by my side!

You can see my work at www.flozbox.com

Tobin Florio sporting the latest in must have headwear

Science technician / phenotyping assistant

In 2013 I found work as a summer casual in the Uauy group at the John Innes Centre, working in the fields and glasshouses to supplement my income as an artist.

My summer contract was extended through the winter, in which time I learnt the purpose and the importance of the work I had carried out over the past months. Having seen the cycle through I became fascinated, the job grew more rewarding and ever more appealing; working out in the fresh air during the summer months, and in the glasshouses and the lab through the winter, learning the basics of crop genetics.

This paints a rosy picture, there were also many dusty days in the field, sweltering harvests in the polytunnels, not to mention sacks and sacks of material to phenotype and thresh.

Poppies and mixed wild flowers on the verge of a field of wheat

Six years on and I lead the teams in-field phenotypic data collection and post-harvest assessment of yield component traits. 

I provide technical assistance to the germplasm development, glasshouse and field experiments for the Uauy group. In which mapping populations, single seed descent populations, backcrossed Near Isogenic Lines and Recombinant Inbred Lines are developed for trait evaluation in polytunnel and field experiments.

Wheat plants in field and glasshouse

Eventually, maybe inevitably, the two paths crossed and I found myself in the position to be able to provide a very unique service, which was welcomed in the community with great enthusiasm. I had plenty of support and encouragement from friends and colleagues all around the John Innes Centre, especially from the Uauy group, for which I am incredibly grateful. In 2018 Flozbox-science was born.

The illustrations I offer that draw on my own knowledge and experience are limited to a very niche market (crop genetics) but I have a wealth of resources at my fingertips to aid me when I take on a project outside my specialism. In time I hope that word of my work will spread and that I will be able to help visually communicate many other aspects of science.

Tobin Florio's paintings and studio
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Tobin Florio sporting the latest in must have headwear
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Crop genetics trials in glasshouse and field

Artist and illustrator

Hello! my name is Tobin Florio, and I’m a paintaholic. It was obvious to me from an early age, that if I were to fulfill my most burning desire, it would be to spend my life painting, and that’s what I’ve been trying to do ever since.

Both of my maternal grandparents were artists, and a great inspiration. As a child I loved to explore their studios, wonderful worlds of colour and intrigue, a feast for the eyes shared with my brother and sister, both of whom are also artists.

I studied fine art for only 2 years, during which time it became clear that I would have to find a commercial purpose for my creativity, so I went on to study Illustration and animation at University. I graduated in 1999, and began a promising career with a successful design company, but after some years the work became less creative, and the London life style became overbearing. So I took a risk, I resigned, packed my bags and left the country looking for inspiration.

I found it in Italy, where I set up a studio and spent a couple of years just about scraping a living from my art, hopping from cafe to cafe, bar to bar, exhibiting wherever I could and selling quite well. It was a promising start and one of my most prolific periods. A great experience.

I eventually settled in Norwich, just 30 miles from the village where I grew up. I became we, and we found a house and made a beautiful home. At the end of the garden I built myself a studio, custom made to fit my needs. It’s a fantastic space which I try to make use of as much as possible.

An artist's studio, atmospheric interior photos and exterior views in both the sun and the snow

Recently, we became three, so now my time in the studio is mostly spent making glitter monsters and painting pebbles with my beautiful and magnificently messy daughter. 
I’m pretty sure that once I am able to fully commit to painting again, I will have an eager and able assistant by my side!

You can see my work at www.flozbox.com

Science technician / Phenotyping assistant

In 2013 I found work as a summer casual in the Uauy group at the John Innes Centre, working in the fields and glasshouses to supplement my income as an artist.

My summer contract was extended through the winter, in which time I learnt the purpose and the importance of the work I had carried out over the past months. Having seen the cycle through I became fascinated, the job grew more rewarding and ever more appealing; working out in the fresh air during the summer months, and in the glasshouses and the lab through the winter, learning the basics of crop genetics.

This paints a rosy picture, there were also many dusty days in the field, sweltering harvests in the polytunnels, not to mention sacks and sacks of material to phenotype and thresh.

Poppies and mixed wild flowers on the verge of a field of wheat

Six years on and I lead the teams in-field phenotypic data collection and post-harvest assessment of yield component traits. 

I provide technical assistance to the germplasm development, glasshouse and field experiments for the Uauy group. In which mapping populations, single seed descent populations, backcrossed Near Isogenic Lines and Recombinant Inbred Lines are developed for trait evaluation in polytunnel and field experiments.

Wheat plants in field and glasshouse

Eventually, maybe inevitably, the two paths crossed and I found myself in the position to be able to provide a very unique service, which was welcomed in the community with great enthusiasm. I had plenty of support and encouragement from friends and colleagues all around the John Innes Centre, especially from the Uauy group, for which I am incredibly grateful. In 2018 Flozbox-science was born.

The illustrations I offer that draw on my own knowledge and experience are limited to a very niche market (crop genetics) but I have a wealth of resources at my fingertips to aid me when I take on a project outside my specialism. In time I hope that word of my work will spread and that I will be able to help visually communicate many other aspects of science.