D’Oyly-John was born in South Africa in 1906 and raised in Durban. D’Oyly-John travelled to the Far East working for the Asiatic Petroleum Company and later worked in the Tanganyika Police Force. D’Oyly-John then returned to South Africa and joined the Texas Oil Company. After the Second World War D’Oyly-John was encourage to take up painting. D’Oyly-John soon showed talent and developed his style although retained the naïve quality from his lack of traditional training he received. By 1950, D’Oyly-John’s work had been solf in print form by one of the major publishers of that time and he gained international acclaim. D’Oyly-John moved to Cannes and continued to produce successful pieces. His exhibition in Bognor Regis, that was attended by all the major dealers, was almost sold out with a number of his paintings being acquired by the Queen Mother for the Royal collection. D’Oyly-John continued to travel across Europe in search of new subjects and settled in Brighton for the later part of his life. Sadly in 1987, D’Oyly-John suffered a stroke that brought his artistic career to an end.