Clifford was born at Jigalong Mission in the 1950’s. Whilst growing up he lived in various places including Cotton Creek, Punmu and Nullangine. Later, he worked on Yalleen Station as a stockman and bull tamer. Along with being an artist, Clifford is an important Law Man in town, which entitles him to use ochre in his work. He makes his own pigments, these days binding them together with glue. Interestingly, Clifford is directly related to the highly acclaimed Rover Thomas (his father’s brother), who also painted with ochres. In 2007 Clifford took part in an artists’ trip along the Canning Stock Route where the artists painted their stories of their history of the land. As a result Clifford appeared on the ABC’s 7.30 Report and Stateline, as well as being interviewed by a number of international networks. He attended a Perth “Storytellers Forum”, talking about his father and uncle to an audience of writers and filmmakers.