Two decades ago I began my career as a freelance illustrator for such clients as Reader's Digest, Scholastic Books, Doubleday & Co. and various advertising agencies. In fact, I would pretty much take on any job that was offered. So I was hired to and did draw bedcomforters, lighting fixtures, liquour packaging and even "nose-clamps" (Please don't ask). This attitude led me to trying my hand at everything: storyboarding, logo design and computer graphics, the latter as a "graphic design engineer." This was before home computers and I worked on a Quantel Paintbox at NBC News, ABC News and PBS's McNeil/Lehrer News Hour (by far the best of the bunch).
It was very profitable and a good experience but I felt that I was only biding my time until I could do the kind of work I really loved: drawing and painting people, with an admitted penchant for Comix & Fantasy.

So eventually I took the plunge into poverty and began drawing and painting for the comic book industry and it was the best move I ever made. I've worked for industry giants and independents; major magazines and the small press. I like to think that it's made a huge difference in my growth as a draftsman and as an artist. It's also widened my artistic circle and enabled me to meet and get to know many of my artist idols and even to be able to call some of them "friends". You can't begin to put a price on that.

Then I went back to school, so to speak, and studied drawing and painting, from the live model, with the famed realist painter Burton Silverman. The challenges of creating something valid on paper or canvas in the brief time we had every week was as daunting as it was therapeutic. And I know it's enriched all of my work a great deal. 

A decade ago now, a monograph on yours truly, RAY LAGO: Heroes & Angels, was published by Archangel Entertainment. I think and I hope, it speaks for me as to my outlook on life and art. It's always tricky guessing how one comes across in print. Burt Silverman, after reading my book, said that he liked it, that it was "unpretentious." I don't know if he realized it at the time but that was one of the nicest compliments he could have given me.

What's next? Well, basically, I'm somewhat lazy and my life continues to change through little action on my part, and certainly due to that very inaction. So I guess I'll just wait and see what happens next. Then I'll probably tell you about it.
Thanks for visiting my site,