By 1948 they were back in Berkeley, north of the campus, in a small two room apartment with another child on the way. Rex had a studio in San Francisco in the famous Montgomery Block building where many artists and bohemian types had their quarters. He attended classes at The California School of Fine Arts on Chestnut Street, studying under painter David Park.

In this time he began to define what his voice as a painter would become, exploring varieties of figurative painting styles in both watercolor and oil paint. He drew constantly, filling notebooks with drawings and exploring block printing and lithography. For a time he experimented with photography after buying a Speed Graphic camera. He photographed his daughter, clothed and nude, as only a serious artist would. In time he abandoned the camera due to expense. While Margaret visited him he taught her to sit still and he began to paint her.

Renee helped out with expenses to a moderate degree by working in a bookstore south of the University of California campus.

1918-1938 1938-1940 1940-1944 1944-1948 1948-1951
1951-1954 1954-1956 1957-1958 1958-1960 1960-1964
1964-1968 1968-1972 1972-1976 1976-1978 1978-1980
1980-1984 1984-1988 1988-1990 1990-1995 1995-1999