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Ray Lago

Lago artIn the 1980s, Ray created graphics for NBC News and did story illustrations for various adventure digests, such as Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Monthly and Isaac Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine, as well as Electronic Games magazine and Silvia Porter's Financial magazine. He won awards for his work for clients such as Readers' Digest, Doubleday & Co. and Scholastic before entering the comic-book field in 1989.

Painted story credits include Marvel Comics' Open Space and Hellraiser series; Ivanhoe for First Comics/Classics Illustrated; Ask Any Mermaid in NBM's Skin Tight Orbit, volume 2; The Vampirella 25th Anniversary Special for Harris Comics; and Shi: Masquerade for Crusade Comics.

Harris wisely chose Ray for a story in the 25th Anniversary Special, the cover of Vampirella of Draculon #3, and his work appears in the Pinup Special, the Vampirella Postcards and in the Topps Trading Card sets. He has also been known to doodle on a beer mat or two!

Ray is also well known for the revived Little Annie Fanny feature for Playboy magazine.

Lago has also painted many covers for Marvel, Dark Horse and other publishers, plus scores of trading cards for Fleer, Topps and Skybox, and more recently, Magic cards for Wizards of the Coast. A full colour art book, RAY LAGO: Heroes & Angels, was published by Archangel Entertainment in 1997.

Ray now works out of his Manhattan apartment, which he describes as: "The artist's studio, itself a madman's lair, is littered with odd glass; water jars and ink bottles; tin cups and paint tubes; porcelain-coated metal palettes; and oak brushes made with the bristles, fur and long hairs of exotic beasts, large and small sheets of paper of all kinds and colours from foreign lands and near; and is full of books art books and reference books filling the many bookcases and often spilling to and cluttering the floor in 'organized' piles."

Ray's stunning work gains him a place in my all time top ten favourite Vampirella artists.

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Ray Lago Post-It

Urban Legend? On the left is a Post-It note with a sketch by Ray Lago.

When I bought it on eBay it was accompanied by a story which may be an urban legend in the making.

Allegedly, Ray Lago was at the bar at a Convention and was discussing his latest art. To illustrate the point he quickly sketched a draft version on a yellow Post-It note.

The Post-It note was saved and sold on eBay (to me). I took the story as a bit of "sellers hype", but, at least, I had a piece of Ray Lago art at an affordable price.

About a month later another piece of Ray Lago art came up for sale on eBay (from a different seller) and I recognised it as the same/similar pose (the picture directly above the scan of the Post-It note)!

Bizarrely, I was the only person to bid on the piece and, again, I got a Ray Lago original for an affordable price. So now I own the Post-It note and the full piece.

The only person who can confirm/repudiate the story about the Post-It note is Ray Lago himself. Whether it is just a "tall tale" or true, it is a little strange that the "matching set" should end up with the same person!

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