Nar O. Castro


LEONARDO OCAMPO CASTRO was born a month before the outbreak of the Pacific War and rendered fatherless at very tender age. As a consequence, he had to virtually fight his way through life while yet a small boy. It could be that experience which served him in good stead when he entered the highly competitive world of the komiks.

Castro confesses that he never ambitioned to be a komiks illustrator, although one of his youthful inclinations was drawing. He was already in high school when he developed a special liking for painting. He particularly idolized the late Fernando Amorsolo. After high school, not surprisingly, he enrolled in Fine Arts. Halfway in his studies, he landed a job in an advertising agency, simultaneous with a stint as part-time artist for the Philippine branch of Ginn & Co., the American book publishers.

The young Castro abandoned his art studies altogether in favor of turning full-time professional artist. His introduction into the komiks business was via a want ad placed by the GMS Publishing Corporation in a local daily. Castro applied sans the customary sample drawing and got impressed by the never-a-dull-moment pace of life in the komiks publication office. Immediately, he decided to turn komiks illustrator.

The way to the top, however, Castro was later to find out as not exactly strewn with roses. He recalls with a sad grin the many heartaches and frustrations that he encountered along the way before he was able to make it to the magic circle. It was pure guts and grim determination that saw him through the ordeal commonly experienced by neophytes.

Castro has illustrated quite number of novels by the big names in the business: Ravelo, Gomez, FernandezPatron, Olvidado, Cabral — proof that he had indeed arrived. [1]

Published Works

  • Aking Anak… Aking Mahal, Damdamin Komiks (1985-1986)
  • Alpha Omega Girl, Teens Weekly Komiks (1982-1984)
  • Anjanette, Desire Komiks (1995-1996)
  • Anna Rhodora, Pilipino Komiks (1975)
  • Apat na Halimaw, Darna Komiks (1968-1969)
  • Barranco, Rambo Pocketkomiks (1986)
  • Blop, Precious Komiks (1977-1978)
  • Bruhitic Beauty, Sixteen (1972-1973)
  • Bulaklak sa Putikan, Horror Komiks (1966-1967)
  • Fronton Queen, Aliwan Komiks (1977-1978)
  • Galatea, Precious Komiks (1981)
  • Grandslam, Silangan Klasiks (1981)
  • Grufina Samson, Pioneer Komiks (1978-1979)
  • Koja, Shogun Qualikomiks (1987-1988)
  • Mga Anghel sa Impiyerno, Pilipino Komiks (1968-1969)
  • Mirasol, Gwapo Komiks (2007)
  • Oink-Oink, Pioneer Komiks (1978-1981)
  • Pandoray, Pinoy Klasiks (1983)
  • Pirata, Thunder Illustrated Magasin (1988)
  • Precious M.R.S., Precious Komiks (1983-1984)
  • Red Red Rose, TSS (1972-1973)
  • Smith & Weston, Silangan Klasiks (1989-1990)
  • Sukob sa Puso, OFW SuperStories (2007)
  • The Mongoose: Snake Killer, Pioneer Komiks (1986-1988)
  • The Stunt-Ma’m, Silangan Klasiks (1987-1988)
  • Vivena, Precious Komiks (1977-1978)
  • Walang Makakapalit, Engkantada Komiks (1999)
  • Water Lily Power, Teens Weekly Komiks (1989-1990)