Sheldon “Shelly” Moldoff of Lauderhill got his start in the comic industry more than 60 years ago drawing “believe it or not” filler items. In the 1940′s, the so-called Golden Age of comics, he drew such strips as Hawkman, Kid Eternity and The Black Pirate. he also drew covers for the first appearances of Green Lantern and The Flash.
But Moldoff is best known for a 14-year run with Batman from 1953 to 1967. He drew some of the goofiest but most beloved Batman episodes ever, including Zebra Batman and the Merman Batman, and he introduced Batwoman and the original Bat-Girl.
Until about 10 years ago, Moldoff was hardly known at all. He worked as a ghost artist for the creator of Batman, the late Bob Kane, and his name never once appeared in print.
When asked if it bothered him that Kane took credit for his work, Moldoff says no, that he was just happy to make a living when other artists struggled. he left comics in 1967 but later did a cartoon, Marco Polo Jr., and drew comics for Big Boy and Red Lobster restaurants, Blockbuster Video and others.
In 1991 Moldoff finally got his due when ex-Batman editor Julius Schwartz praised him at a comics convention: “All the years I was buying artwork from Bob Kane, I wasn’t buying it from Bob Kane, I was buying it from Shelly Moldoff.”
Now Moldoff is a regular at conventions, selling drawings and signing autographs.
“When they treat you with respect, there’s a certain amount of satisfaction,” he says. You’ve done something, dedicated your whole life to it, and you see it was appreciated by a log of people.”