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Interviewed: AVClub talks to legendary Jack Davis
AVC: What artists were important to you growing up?
JD: Growing up, of course, Walt Disney. Donald Duck—the big feet—and Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs. And Harold Foster, who drew Prince Valiant, and he also drew Tarzan, Edgar Rice Burroughs’ bit. And Alex Raymond, who drew Flash Gordon and drew Secret Agent X-9 and Jungle Jim all at the same time. How he did that, I don’t know. I used to get, when I was small, about 12 years old, the Sunday paper. And the page was full of nothing but artwork. George McManus was on the front page, Maggie and Jiggs [of Bringing Up Father]. Beautiful stuff. Very tight, very funny, very illustrated. And then you’d turn the page, and there would be Alex Raymond, the top would be Jungle Jim, and then it would be Flash Gordon. And the third page, again, was Harold Foster, with all of the knights and everything. When I was, I guess, about 12 or 15 years old, I wrote Harold Foster a fan letter—they knocked me out, his Sunday pages—and he sent me a Sunday page of Prince Valiant making a saddle for a horse, and the bridle. From that day on, the horses that I drew, the cowboys and stuff like that, had to come from Harold Foster. And also a big impression was Fred Harman, who drew Red Ryder. He drew great guns and holsters that really had a hard grip on it. So, that’s about it