A soccer scholarship was Clayton's passport to Mount St. Mary's University in Emmetsburg, Maryland, where he earned a Bachelor of Arts degree. Drafted to play professionally upon graduation, Clayton's plans were derailed when the North American Soccer League folded. An offer to model for a photographer steered Clayton to his first modeling contract with Wilhelmina in New York. Within a few months his clean-cut looks and engaging smile were the focus of fashion editorials in GQ, Vogue, Glamour, Elle, Esquire, Details, French Vogue and Ebony Man, in addition to a slew of fashion catalogues and print campaigns.
Clayton can thank those European modeling assignments that afforded him the initial exposure to the masters and the techniques of the post-Impressionist movement. Henri Matisse's saturated palette being the most profound influence. Clayton lived in Paris for three years studying the masters between modeling jobs.
In 1993, Clayton moved to California and landed a few scene-stealing cameos for his still life’s and portraits. Showtime's original movie "Run for the Dream: The Gail Deavers Story", "Any Day Now", "Why Do Fools Fall in Love", and "The Score", are among the TV and film productions Clayton's work have been commissioned to adorn.
Among the collectors of his work Clayton lists: actors Denzel Washington, Halle Berry, Robert De Niro, Don Cheadle, Lynn Whitfield, Roscoe Lee Browne, Robert Townsend, Lorraine Toussaint, CC Pounder, Kenny Lattimore, photographer Peggy Sirota, King/Drew Medical Center, NYU Michael Schlesinger, Janet Botaish, Ken and Donna Gilbert, Janice Huff, Dianne Houston, and Ken and Kathryn Chenault.
Clayton, his wife Gwen, and their three children reside in the suburban tranquility of New York's Westchester County.