David Downton was born in 1959 in Kent, England. He studied at Canterbury (Foundation year 1977-1978) and Wolverhampton (BA hons illustration/graphics 1979-1981).
In 1984 he moved to Brighton and began his illustration career. He worked on a wide variety of projects ranging from advertising and packaging to illustrating fiction, cook books and, occasionally, fashion. His drawings from fashion shows have been published internationally. In 1998, he started working on a series of portraits of some of the world's most beautiful women.