John Ford

John Ford OAM, is a renowned marine artist whose artwork displays the subtle hues and intricate detail of the watercolour style.  While his works are substantially based on maritime themes, his portfolio also includes historical buildings, steam locomotives, military subjects and animals.

John arrived in Australia from the UK after serving 18 years in the Royal Air Force.  He served in two areas of conflict, the Middle East and Northern Ireland.  His first seven years in Australia he has been employed in various industries from working in a tool room, car air conditioning and even juke boxes and pinball machines to name a few.  In 1982 he joined the inaugural committee to build South Australia’s sail training ship, One and All. He is still a member of the Board.

With numerous exhibitions and art awards to his credit, John is one of South Australia’s leading artists.  John’s work has been commissioned for many Australian and international, private and corporate collections.  These include Make a Wish Foundation, S.A. Maritime Museum, Royal Australian Navy, Australia Post, Encounter 2002 Official Event and the ABC series “The Navigators”, SA Aviation Museum and the National Cancer Council Research Foundation.  His works have been used in numerous family history books.

Click the thumbnails to see details about each image

Awards & Achievements


  • Fellow of the Australian Society of Maritime Artists
  • State Vice President of Australian Society of Maritime Artists
  • Chairperson Port Adelaide Community Art Centre
  • Member Friends SA Maritime Museum
  • Life Member and Board member of the Friends of the One and All Sailing vessel
  • Former Community representative Port Adelaide Renewal Steering Committee
  • Deputy Chair Adelaide Brighton Cement Community Liaison Group
  • Tour guide Port Adelaide Enfield Council.
  • Victoria Road Air Pollution Committee member
  • Awarded in 2013 Australia Day Award from Port Adelaide Enfield Council for services to the Arts and the Community
  • He is also a respected Judge of art shows and is also a public speaker on various subjects.
  • In 2021 John was awarded the Order of Australia Medal for Services to the community of Port Adelaide.

‘I believe with my work I recreate moments in history.  I have recreated many fine vessels which are no longer with us and also filled in the gap for those who have been researching their family trees and have no photograph’