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How a Motorcycle Accident Inspired Renee Robyn to Become A Master Digital Artist

By Hanssie on September 15th 2015

Renee-Robyn-3In the book, The School of Greatness, Lewis Howes talks in depth about turning adversity into advantage and that to truly achieve great things, one must sometimes go through extreme adversity. The road to photographer and digital artist Renee Robyn’s success began with adversity in the form of a terrible motorcycle accident in which Renee was hit and run over by a car while riding. The accident left her nearly paralyzed. It took over 6 months for her to learn to walk again. In that time, while she was bedridden, Renee began creating digital worlds that she saw in her mind; places her body was unable go to yet.

Using Photoshop and a Wacom Tablet as her tools to express her creativity, Renee began to craft intricate fantasy worlds – inspired from her years of reading fantasy books and playing video games. Combining the real world with the one in her imagination, Renee’s images have an ethereal quality that is recognizable in all her work.



A former model, Renee realized that she had so many ideas that she wanted to articulate and turned to photography so she could bring them to life. After the accident, Renee was “pushed into photography full-time.”

Photography was that one thing that I could do all the time. And it was the one thing where I wasn’t in pain. It’s one of the many reasons why I do a lot of composite artwork, because I couldn’t get anywhere. I had to be able to bring the world to me.


Now, Renee is a highly acclaimed fashion and portrait photographer and a master digital artist who travels the world and still rides her motorcycle. Smugmug recently created a 3-minute video on Renee’s story, which you can see below.

Watch Dreams of a Digital Artist – Renee Robyn by Smugmug Films

Renee also gives her top 6 tips on creating digital art over on the SmugMug blog here. You can see her work on her website and more of Smugmug‘s films on their YouTube channel.

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Hanssie is a Southern California-based writer and sometimes portrait and wedding photographer. In her free time, she homeschools, works out, rescues dogs and works in marketing for SLR Lounge. She also blogs about her adventures and about fitness when she’s not sick of writing so much. Check out her work and her blog at Follow her on Instagram

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Jason Ulsrud

    Love Renee’s work. She’s a Rock Star!

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  2. Ruth Rackley


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  3. William Irwin

    I like how she shoots both Nikon and Canon. Both are tools used to project what the mind sees. Great work!

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  4. Duc Hong

    “… and it was the one thing where I wasn’t in pain .. ” the best line describes a photographer life, very inspire article

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  5. Ben Perrin

    Fantastic to see someone who is put into a bad situation make the most out of it. It can’t be easy to be positive after such an awful accident. Well done Renee.

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