Born in Greenock, Scotland, Blake's family moved to London when he was a child and he remained in the South for the rest of his life. He trained at Camberwell School of Art and at fifteen years of age started work as an architectural draughtsman in the interior design business. Early in 1940 he was drafted into a small group of war artists producing propaganda work for the Ministry of Information, and for three evenings a week worked for the Daily Express drawing war maps and impressions of battles. He exhibited at the Royal Academy and was an elected member of the RI, the RSMA, the NEAC, the London Sketch Club serving on the councils of all these societies. His work has been shown in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Chicago, Düsseldorf and Brussels as well as a number of noted London galleries.