Virgil Gavan Reilly was one of the premier cartoonists for Smith's Weekly during the 1920s and 1930s. He is best known for his cartoons with a saucy character known as 'The Virgil Girl'. Reilly had begun his career as a commercial artist, working as a motion picture advertising artist, as well as an illustrator for propaganda posters during World War I. He is also known as a book illustrator and as a cover artist for the Australian Women's Weekly.
During the 1940s, Reilly was also involved in comic book art. He illustrated two comic books with 'Texas Cody' for publisher Joseph Swanson Wilkinson in 1947. He went to work for Invincible Press, where he illustrated 'Silver Flash and his Frogman' between 1950 and 1955. He was also present at the rival publisher Ayers & James, drawing 'The Invisible Avenger' and 'Fighting Fleet Comics' under the Red Circle Press imprint.
For the company's Comics Library, he illustrated dramatisations of real-life naval battles. Reilly additionally illustrated naval comic books for Calvert Publishing and Consolidated Press. He remained involved in newspaper cartooning throughout the 1950s.