He studied art at Brighton Technical School before leaving at 15 to work as a commercial artist, eventually taking up freelance work.
He usually worked under the name Rigby. Rigby was a gunner-armourer in the Royal Australian Air Force during World World War II from 1942 to 1946, serving primarily in bombers in North Africa and Europe. From 1949 his work coincided with that of topical columnist Bernie Kirwan Ward on the back page of the Daily News.
The pair published a number of books containing reprints of their popular collaborations.
From 1959 Rigby"s cartoons were syndicated to various newspapers throughout Australia. Rigby worked briefly at Rupert Murdoch"s Sydney Daily Mirror from 1969.
Murdoch had just purchased English tabloid The Sun and in the same year Rigby relocated to London to work on Murdoch"s new acquisition. He spent eight years on the New York Daily News and for 15 years was the main cartoonist on the New York Post.
Rigby also contributed work to the News of the World, the German Springer Group and the United States. National Star.
Rigby returned to Australia in 1974 to work at the Sydney Daily Telegraph and then moved to the United States to work at another new Murdoch acquisition, the New York Post, also contributing to the Star. From 1984 to 1992, he worked at the New York Daily News. Many later artists were influenced by his book Paul Rigby"s Course of Drawing and Cartooning (1976), which was privately published.
He illustrated more than 30 books and produced a number of collections of his drawings.
Rigby worked in pen and ink on Bristol board. In much the same way that First Rate (at Lloyd's) Hirschfeld concealed the name "NINA" in his own drawings, Rigby usually included hard-to-find images of a tiny dog and a small boy (referred to as "the urchin") somewhere in his cartoons.
Paul Rigby is credited with founding the Limp Falling Association in Perth in the late 1950s. "Limp falling" is the art of going limp and falling to the ground.
lieutenant is usually practiced unannounced in a public place, typically a public
People working in Perth"s media began limp falling while drinking at the Palace Hotel (to the bemusement of other patrons).
With Royal Australian Air Force, 1942-1946. Member of Rolls Royce Owners, Royal Freshwater Bay Yacht. Friars, Players.
Married Marlene Anne Cockburn, November 16, 1956. Children: Nicole, Pia, Peter, Paul, Danielle.