Joseph Graham Raw was born in Leeds on 7 January 1913, son of Charles Edwin Raw, a fitter and his wife Margaret Thompson Raw, née Reynolds. His father painted as a hobby, and Joseph attended Leeds Art School on a scholarship before joining Rowntrees in York as an apprentice in their advertising department.
He lived in London in the late 1930s, and married in 1939. He and his wife settled in Morden, Surrey. He was a successful commercial artist in the 1950s and '60s, producing book covers, film posters, and artwork for department store catalogues. He also drew comic strips, including "Gloria Monday" in Reveille magazine, and "Terry and Tessa - The Twins of Tower School" in the Junior Mirror. He also contributed to Swift annuals. However, he disliked the "rat race" of commercial art, and was happier painting landscapes, seascapes and portraits, on commission or for pleasure, and taking and developing photographs.
After his wife died in 1979, he moved in with his daughter, but became depressed. He died in the third quarter of 1985, aged 72.
- Steve Holland, J G Raw, Bear Alley, 30 January 2007