I was mild-mannered, wore glasses, was very shy with women.
In the beginning, we had a great deal of freedom, and Jerry wrote completely out of his imagination - very, very freely. We even had no editorial supervision to speak of, because they were in such a rush to get the thing in before deadline. But later on we were restricted.
Jerry and I always felt that the character was enjoying himself. He was having fun: he wasn't taking himself seriously. It was always a lark for him, as you can see in my early drawings.
Clark Kent, I suppose, had a little bit of Harold Lloyd in him.
Before I ever put anything on paper, Jerry and I would talk back and forth.
I think initially we wanted to use the first letter of the character's name. We thought S was perfect.
And I agreed the feeling of action as he was flying or jumping or leaping - a flowing cape would give it movement. It really helped, and it was very easy to draw.
He was mostly leaping tall buildings in the beginning. There were cases where he would leap off a tall building or swoop down, and at that point he would look like he was flying, I suppose. It was just natural to draw him like that.
In this drawing we just let our imagination run wild. We visualized Superman toys, games, and a radio show - that was before TV - and Superman movies. We even visualized Superman billboards. And it's all come true.
Jerry often says that Slam Bradley was really the forerunner of Superman, because we turned it out with no restrictions, complete freedom to do what we wanted; the only problem was that we had a deadline.
Jerry reversed the usual formula of the superhero who goes to another planet. He put the superhero in ordinary, familiar surroundings, instead of the other way around, as was done in most science fiction. That was the first time I can recall that it had ever been done.
Not only that, but when I first met Joe, to my intense delight, he showed me that he was a collector. He was collecting some of the early Tarzan pages by Hal Foster, and, later, early Flash Gordons; and I found that we were both absolutely interested in the same type of thing.
Those early sketches looked too cartoony; I really wanted to do detailed drawings - I was taking anatomy classes - but unfortunately I wasn't able to do it because of the time element.
I did all the work at the beginning up until the point where I couldn't handle the increasingly heavy art production burden alone. I needed, and got, assistance.
I drew a picture on the back of a calendar in pencil. In those days they used to give out free calendars, I had no art paper, so I took whatever else I could.
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