Robert Olszewski was born in 1945 in Natrona Heights, Pennsylvania. His natural interest in art developed early and was first demonstrated in painting and drawing. At age 16, he began winning awards for his work at local art shows, and was encouraged to pursue a career in art. Robert graduated in 1968 with a BS in Art Education from Indiana University of Pennsylvania, married and moved to Southern California in the same year to live near a major US art center and teach. While teaching he painted in the summers and at night. The security of teaching plus the free time, allowed him to experiment freely and develop his skills. He had his first one-man show at the Ryder Gallery on La Cienega Boulevard in Los Angeles at age 27. At the same time he enjoyed his young family and made toys for his children to play with.
Along with the toys, he built a dollhouse for his daughter and this was his first introduction to the world of miniatures. His interest in miniatures turned from playful to a serious exploration of miniature figurative works as a new medium of expression.
After 11 years, Robert left teaching in 1978 and pursued miniature figurative work full-time. Within a year his work was receiving national attention. In 1979, at age 34, Robert was brought under exclusive contract with the major European porcelain company, Goebel, maker of the world famous M.I. Hummel figurines, and was co-founder of the Goebel Miniatures Studios.