Thomas William "Tom" Roberts was an English-born Australian artist and a key member of the Heidelberg School art movement, also known as Australian impressionism.
After attending art schools in Melbourne, he travelled to Europe in 1881 to further his training, and returned home in 1885, "primed with whatever was the latest in art". He did much to promote en plein air painting and encouraged other artists to capture the national life of Australia. While he is best known for his "national narratives"—among them Shearing the Rams (1890), A break away! (1891) and Bailed Up (1895)—he also achieved renown as a portraitist, and in 1903 completed The Big Picture, the most famous visual representation of the first Australian Parliament.