Ray Caspio

"a shapeshifter of an actor" - Cleveland Plain Dealer

Filtering by Category: my clowns

Charles Chaplin

Men are joining my Oh, My Stars! series!

Here's Charlie Chaplin, The Little Tramp, in black and white and color, inspired by his performance in City Lights!

Available in black & white through my RedBubble store on:

clothing, prints, posters, cards, postcards, phone and iPad cases, mugs, pillows, tote bags, and duvet covers!

Available in color: a hand-signed 8"x8" photographic print
from my Oh, My Stars! series.

Limited edition of 12.
E-mail me for price and shipping information.

RAY CASPIO: OH, MY STARS! Opens June 6th

Oh, My Stars!, my first solo illustration exhibit, will feature limited edition hand-signed pieces spanning the past six years of my illustration work. It opens June 6-22 at Maria Neil Art Project!

Opening Reception:
Friday, June 6, 5-10pm

Maria Neil Art Project

15813 Waterloo Road
Cleveland, OH 44110

Ray Caspio is an actor, performance artist and illustrator. He will be featured in the annex next to Native Cleveland with an exhibition of his drawings of some of the most memorable and entertaining women of vintage television. Get reacquainted with Laverne & Shirley, Maude, Wonder Woman, Alexis Carrington and Samantha Stephens through Ray’s intricate and fun drawings.

We’ll be partnering with Star Pop vintage + modern to show some fun items that compliment the art on display. Star Pop's vintage pieces are the perfect compliment to Ray's work!

Ray's biggest influences have come from '60s, '70s, and '80s pop culture. Growing up, television was his life and he was enamored with strong female characters, many of whom were funny, campy, and capable of superhuman feats; most of whom existed before he was born. Oh, My Stars! is the ongoing exploration of the personalities who have fascinated, shaped, and taught him since he first learned to twitch his nose in his grandma's front room while writing cursive L's on every page of his baby book.

The exhibition opens on June 6 and runs through June 22 and will be shown at the Native-Cleveland Annex between Native Cleveland and Star Pop.

The one drawing I have from my childhood, circa 1983!

Lucy is The Queen of the Gypsies

Available as a t-shirt: http://www.redbubble.com/people/raycaspio/works/8570085-the-queen-of-the-gypsies

Available as a print, poster, or card: http://www.redbubble.com/people/raycaspio/works/8570072-the-queen-of-the-gypsies

At the end of July, as I narrow my focus on what I want to pursue in my performing, I'm traveling to the Celebration Barn Theatre in Maine to study Eccentric Performing with Avner Eisenberg and Julie Goell. This has me thinking a lot about clowns – who is a clown, what makes a clown, what can I learn from clowns of the past (my favorite clowns) – which brought me to someone I've wanted to draw for a long time: Lucille Ball. Who hasn't watched at least one episode of I Love Lucy, The Lucy Show, or Here's Lucy?

This illustration comes from a personal favorite I Love Lucy episode: The Operetta. Lucy plays Camille, The Queen of the Gypsies; a performance I can watch over and over again.

Lucille Ball as Camille, The Queen of the Gypsies, by Ray Caspio

Here's a clip from the episode:

Bewitched: Oh, My Stars!

Available as a t-shirt: http://www.redbubble.com/people/raycaspio/works/8455010-oh-my-stars

I love Bewitched and I'm not afraid to admit it. If you've looked around this site at the various Bewitched illustrations, you've noticed. If you've looked around my kitchen at my Samantha and Serena statues, you've noticed.

Bewitched is the first TV show I remember watching. I cried when I had to start Safety Town as a kid because it was going to interfere with 11am episodes of Bewitched. It's one of the last shows I watched with my grandma – the episode was Samantha and the Beanstalk – before she passed away May 23, 2011. The day we got the key to our house in August 2011, I watched Bewitched DVDs on my computer while I prepped the house, alone, for painting. I've watched at least one episode daily since then.

The show is comfort and memory. The show is Elizabeth Montgomery, who will always be one of my favorite actors.
An early Bewitched illustration, drawn on the floor of my bedroom many, many years ago while watching the show.
Elizabeth, as Samantha, represented possibility to me. Anything I wanted, I could have if I worked for it. She had the magical abilities to obtain whatever she wanted whenever she wanted, but she wasn't satisfied with that. Her power was in herself: a theme that ran through many of her characters throughout her career.

With this illustration, I finally did Elizabeth justice. I captured what I hoped to capture.

I've been asked why I don't draw modern pop culture figures. Most of them bore me. Modern pop culture, essentially, bores me. I feel little connection to it. There's some stuff I like, but characters from the past interest me so much more. (But, if there's a modern characters someone wants drawn, feel free to e-mail me through the contact form on the side of the page!)

Elizabeth Montgomery doesn't bore me. The cast of characters from this show will never bore me because they're so much a part of me. Oh, my stars, I'm grateful for this show!

Update, March 10th: Last night, I signed the contract allowing more of my thoughts on Elizabeth to be published in an upcoming biography about her, Twitch Upon a Star, by Herbie J. Pilato. It's one of those weird moments where life comes full-circle.

background photos by Frank J. Lanza Photography, courtesy of Theater Ninjas
Contents of this site copyright 2007-present, Ray Caspio & their respective owners.
Content on this site may only be used after obtaining written permission from the site owner.

Ray Caspio received a 2016 Creative Workforce Fellowship. The Fellowships is a program of the Community Partnership for Arts and Culture. Funding for the Fellowship program is made possible by the generous support of Cuyahoga County residents through a public grant from Cuyahoga Arts & Culture.