Born: 1924 Atlanta, GA
Jack Davis is an American cartoonist and illustrator. He was inducted into the Comic Book Hall of Fame in 2003. He also received the National Cartoonist Society Milton Caniff Lifetime Achievement Award in 1996.
After rejections from several comic book publishers, he began freelancing for William Gaines' EC Comics in 1950, contributing to Tales from the Crypt, Two-Fisted Tales and The Vault of Horror. In the late 1950s, he drew Western stories for Atlas Comics. His 1963 work on the Rawhide Kid (#33-35) was his last for non-humor comic books.
His style of wild, free-flowing brushwork and wacky characters made him a perfect choice when Harvey Kurtzman launched Mad as a zany, satirical EC comic book in 1952. Davis contributed to other Kurtzman magazines - Trump, Humbug and Help! - eventually expanding into illustrations for record jackets, movie posters, books and magazines, including Time and TV Guide.
In 1961, he wrote, drew and edited his own comic book, Yak Yak, for Dell Comics. In 1965 he illustrated Meet The North American Indians by Elizabeth Payne, published by Random House as part of their children's Step Up Books line.
Because Davis could do cartoon illustrations in a matter of minutes, he was sometimes called upon to save ad campaigns which had gone awry. This combination of speed and top clients at one time made Davis the highest paid illustrator in the world. Davis said many of his assignments came from art directors who had grown up reading Mad.