Rex Julius was born on 5 June 1914 in Sydney. He served with the Royal Australian Navy during the Second World War, from 1940 and in 1944 he was attached to the RAN Historical Section as an official war artist. Unlike other official war artists, Julius did not receive a status higher than the rank of able seaman.
Julius was the first of two artists appointed by the RAN Historical Records Section after senior officers saw a portfolio of drawings Julius had done for his own enjoyment.
The section intended to assemble a larger group of artists to document the RAN's activities, but this plan was never fully realised.
Two works produced by Julius were subsequently presented to the Memorial: Prayers at Divisions HMAS Lonsdale and Fairmile motor launch of RAN.
Rex Julius died from illness on 19 May 1944 while at Milne Bay, New Guinea.