"Abe" Ocampo started out in the komiks
field fresh from high school in 1957, raring to
put to profitable use his overwhelming love for
Abe Ocampo Portrait by Rico RivalHe got his
initial break as an illustrator when RR
Marcelino, then editor-in-chief of Extra Komiks
and Romansa Komiks, published by Philippine Book
Co., assigned him to draw a short story. He was
drawing komiks-novels shortly after including
Dragona by Mars Ravelo, and Ama Namin by RR
Marcelino, both for Extra Komiks.
Beginning in the 1960's, Ocampo turned to Ace
Publications for bigger challenges, and
consequently was commissioned to illustrate a
novel by one of the company's popular writers,
Pablo S. Gomez. The novel was Anak ng Asuwang.
The serial was still running when he got to
illustrate the work of yet another big name
writer, Mars Ravelo - Ito Ba Ang Aking Ina?
More assignments followed from the PSG
Publishing House and Graphic Arts Service, Inc.
By then, he had found his forte: drama. Inang
Putik, Makunat pa sa Inuyat and Araw Araw Kitang
Mahal were a few of the several novels he
illustrated for GASI.
In 1970, Ocampo joined Affiliated Publications,
Inc., as a contributing artist. That started his
team up with a then budding writer, Carlo J.
Caparas, whose very first novel, Citadel, was
assigned to him. He was later to provide the
artwork for some of Caparas' blockbusters, among
them Angela Markado and Ang Babaing Hinugot sa
International exposure for Ocampo came in 1971,
when DC Comics tapped him as one of ten artists
to illustrate for their publications, finishing
Rima for Nestor Redondo.
Ocampo has been active in the business for many
decades now, and he just cannot remember anymore
how many stories and novels he has illustrated.
But he says that his most challenging works were
those of the Ravelo and Caparas Novels.