Voting for the 7th annual Inkwell Awards was conducted via online balloting for two weeks from April 15 through April 30, 2014. Subsequent ballots from the same IP address were omitted from the tallies. Thank you for the over 1500 votes you placed. The Inkwell Awards Committee would like to formally extend congratulations to all the winners and runners up.



Favorite ink artist over the pencil work of another artist from 2013 cover-dated, interior, American comic book material

WINNER: NORM RAPMUND (Action Comics, Ravagers, Teen Titans, Justice League of America, Nightwing, Superman

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“Wow! I’m excited – and totally surprised – to be the recipient of this year’s Favorite Inker Award.  It sounds cliché, but it’s an honor to just be nominated alongside a group of such talented artists. I feel really blessed to have been able to make a living doing what I love the past 22 years, and to be recognized for it blows my mind. First and foremost, I’d like to thank all the pencillers I worked with at DC Comics last year, especially long time collaborators Brett Booth and Dan Jurgens.  I’d also like to thank the Inkwell Awards and the fans & pros who took the time to vote.  Your support and encouragement means the world to me. Last but certainly not least, my deepest appreciation goes out to my wife, Tamara, for putting up with my crazy schedule all these years. I couldn’t have done it without you!”

Other Nominees:

  • Richard Friend (Forever Evil, Justice League of America, Green Lantern, Legion Lost, World of Warcraft: Bloodsworn(OGN))
  • Jonathan Glapion (Batman, Birds of Prey, Action Comics, Batgirl)
  • Wade Von Grawbadger (All-New X-Men, Green Lantern, Legion Lost , X-Men: Battle of the Atom) RUNNER UP
  • Jay Leisten (Uncanny X-Men, Avengers Assemble, Gambit, Mighty Avengers, X-Factor, Iron Man)
  • Danny Miki (Batman, Uncanny X-Force, Wolverine & the X-Men)


Ink artist showing exceptional ink style versatility over other pencil artists in 2013 interior, cover-dated, American comic book material  

WINNER: Walden Wong (Wolverine & the X-men, Batwoman, Catwoman, Scarlet Spider, Wolverine Max, X-Treme X-men)

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“Thank you.  As an Inker, I would always approach each penciller’s work differently.   Either with brushes, quills, microns, technical pens, or different combinations and techniques for each penciller.  My goal is to make each penciller’s style stand out for their work and not bring attention to myself.  When nobody noticed I was there in the art, then my work was done correctly.  To be noticed in the shadows, is most humbling.  Thank you.  I’m honored to be accepting this award.”

“Thank you.  I basically sit behind a table in a studio inking pages. When I found out I was nominated for and Inkwell Award, I was flattered.  At that point, it didn’t matter to me if I won or not.  Just being nominated alone was something I could never have imagined.  I looked at the list of nominees in the same categories and I was flabbergasted.  Every nominee were all artists I admire and look up to.  I still feel like I’m new at this inking business, I have so much more to learn and I will continue to grow.  Thanks to everyone who voted.”

Most-Adaptable Other Nominees:

  • Juan Castro (G.I. Joe, G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero, G.I. Joe: Special Missions, Team 7, Molly Danger (FCBD))
  • John Dell (Uncanny Avengers, Superior Spider-man, Guardians of the Galaxy)
  • Jonathan Glapion (Batman, Birds of Prey, Action Comics, Batgirl)
  • Scott Hanna (Avengers Assemble, Adventures of Superman, Green Lantern Corp, Once Upon a Time (OGN), Iron Man, Team 7, Supergirl, Teen Titans, Uncanny X-Force, Wolverine & the X-Men, X-Men, Legion Lost) RUNNER UP
  • Jay Leisten (Uncanny X-Men, Avengers Assemble, Gambit, Mighty Avengers, X-Factor, Iron Man)

Props Other Nominees:

  • Juan Castro (G.I. Joe, G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero, G.I. Joe: Special Missions, Team 7, Molly Danger (FCBD))
  • Richard Friend (Forever Evil, Justice League of America, Green Lantern, Legion Lost, World of Warcraft: Bloodsworn (OGN))
  • Scott Hanna (Avengers Assemble, Adventures of Superman, Green Lantern Corp, Once Upon a Time (OGN), Iron Man, Team 7, Supergirl, Teen Titans, Uncanny X-Force, Wolverine & the X-Men, X-Men, Legion Lost) RUNNER UP
  • Mark Irwin (Batgirl, Justice Leauge of America’s Vibe, Green Lantern, Nightwing, Star Wars: Darth Vader & the Ninth Assassin, Uncanny X-Men, )
  • Bob Smith (Life with Archie)


Favorite Small Press And Mainstream-Independent 2013 interior, cover-dated, American comic book ink work over another pencil artist (Non-Marvel or DC work)

WINNER: Andrew Pepoy (Simpsons Comics, Simpsons Illustrated, Simpsons One-Shot Wonders, Danger Girl: Trinity)
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“I’m sorry I can’t be there. I had a previous commitment to another convention this weekend. I’ll keep this short.

Thanks to the Inkwells for nominating me and to everyone else who voted for me for this S.P.A.M.I. award. While I’ve been nominated for, and even won, awards before, it was usually as part of the team on some story or project, and I was probably the only one who voted for it because of who inked it. So it’s nice to be winning an award specifically for my inking work, which is 90% of what I do in comics. And it’s especially nice to be recognized this year, my silver anniversary in the business.

This award recognizes my work on small press and independent mainstream comics, and those have always been a part of what I do. Either because I wanted to, or, honestly, sometimes because I had to, I’ve never limited myself to the Big Two. Part of what has kept inking fun and interesting for me all these years is the variety, being able to go from inking a super-hero comic, like X-men, to a funny animal book, like Sonic the Hedgehog, or, these days, going from Fables to The Simpsons. I never felt my job as an inker was to impose MY look on a penciler. Instead, I look at my job as bringing out the best in the pencils in a style that best fits them, and, fortunately, I’ve been adaptable enough to be able to do that in a variety of styles. That’s allowed me to work for many smaller or independent publishers on all sorts of comics, keeping me both employed and entertained in this crazy biz for 25 years.

I consider myself very lucky to have had the career that I have, and I hope to see you at the Inkwells in the near future and maybe, if I’m really lucky, also in another 25 years. Thanks again!”

Other Nominees:

  • Juan Castro (G.I. Joe, G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero, G.I. Joe: Special Missions, Team 7 and Molly Danger (FCBD))
  • Stefano Gaudiano (Walking Dead, Bloodshot, Lazarus) RUNNER UP
  • Phyllis Novin (G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero, Simpsons Comics, Transformers: More Than Meets the Eye, Sonic Universe)
  • Cliff Rathburn (Invincible, Super Dinosaur, Walking Dead)
  • Bob Smith (Life with Archie)
  • Keith Williams (Uber) 


Favorite artist known for inking his/ her own pencil work in 2013 interior, cover-dated, American comic book material

WINNER: Stan Sakai (47 Ronin, DHP, Mouse Guard)

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“Thank you for the Inkwell Award.  It is a great honor.  As a self-inker, my pencils tend to be very vague so most of the art is done in the inking stage.  It is great to have that work recognized.”

Other Nominees:

  • Francesco Francavilla (Afterlife with Archie, Batwoman, Black Beetle, Guardians of the Galaxy, Hawkeye)
  • Chris Samnee (Adventures of Superman, Batman Black and White, Daredevil) RUNNER UP
  • Fiona Staples (Saga, Batman Beyond)
  • J.H. Williams (Batwoman, Sandman: Overture)


A hall of fame designation for an inking career in American comic books of outstanding accomplishment (lifetime achievement, 25-years minimum- two winners chosen annually)


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Copyright Joseph H. Simon Estate. All Rights Reserved. Used with permission.

Joe Simon was one of the industry’s few true renaissance men: a writer, editor, illustrator, cartoonist and photographer.

After creating various Golden Age comics, Joe met Jack Kirby in 1940 while an editor at Fox. Simon soon moved to Timely Comics (forerunner of Marvel), becoming their first editor. Jack soon followed and they created Timely’s first million-seller, Captain America Comics. Joe also hired a teenager named Stan Lee.

Simon and Kirby produced material in every genre—superheroes, sci-fi, horror, crime, humor, and war, even creating the romance genre with Young Romance. Joe still pencilled and inked many of the Simon & Kirby studio’s stories, including the moody Black Magic. Simon kept his preferred brush “loaded,” enabling him to produce a line of any shape and thickness.

After the “S & K” team dissolved, Joe developed comics for Harvey, Archie, and DC. For Crestwood, he created Sick magazine, a prominent MAD competitor. In comics and commercial art, he did everything from spot illustrations to paintings.

Joe’s work was his life, and he conquered every discipline. The history of comics is the history of Joe Simon.



Tom Palmer is widely known for his lush, illustrative inking style, though he’s an equally capable penciller and painter. Growing up in New York, he was briefly mentored by legends Jack Kamen and Wally Wood, then drew backgrounds for Mike Esposito who soon  recommended him to Marvel. Tom’s first comics job was pencilling Doctor Strange #171, but he began inking the next issue, over the great Gene Colan. With his unique ability to translate Colan’s fine tonal pencils in ink, Palmer went on to become Gene’s definitive inker, enjoying seminal runs on Daredevil and especially Tomb Of Dracula.

Palmer cemented his sterling reputation by lending his inimitable style to many issues of The Avengers over Neal Adams and John Buscema, as well as to Adams’ classic run on Uncanny X-Men. Palmer’s career has continued into the next century with work on Kick Ass and plenty of newer Marvel and DC titles as well as private commissions.

Tom influenced the next generation of legends, including ink artists Klaus Jansen and Joe Rubenstein. Mike Esposito thought Tom was “a genius,” and Gene Colan said this:

“My favorite inker? Tom was the only one. Al Williamson was really great, too, but Tom is special. He is a complete artist.”

Judging by his election to the Joe Sinnott Hall Of Fame, many others agree.

“I want to express my gratitude to the Inkwell membership and staff along with the many fans who voted for me this year. I sincerely appreciate their recognition and the Joe Sinnott Hall of Fame Award.

It is indeed an honor receiving such a prestigious award, having the name of one of my heroes attached to it only makes it much more rewarding.

Working with so many talented people over the years has made my contribution not only easy but very satisfying. I still look forward to that next assignment as if it were my first.

Thanks to you all.”


Joe Sinnott, the award’s namesake and first recipient, made the following statement about this year’s recipients:

“I couldn’t have been more pleased when I learned that we had elected Joe Simon and Tom Palmer as our selections to the 2014 Inkwell Awards Hall Of Fame.

Joe of course was a favorite of mine way back in the early 1940s when I was just about 14 and an early fan of what was something new, comic books. Joe really enhanced Kirby’s pencils whether it was on the Boy Commandoes, Captain America or even the great romance books that they did. I only regret that Joe, who passed away in 2011 won’t be with us to accept his well-deserved award.

As for Tom Palmer, I can’t say enough about him. We all know what a great artist he is in his own right and someone I would want to ink my pencils if I was still penciling. Like all great inkers, he not only pleases the penciler but he makes their great work even better than it really is.

Again, what a combo to be entering our Hall of Fame together – Joe and Tom, truly two of the greats.”

Joe Sinnott (May 2, 2014)

Other Nominees:

  • Dan Adkins
  • Violet Barclay (aka Valerie Smith)
  • John Beatty
  • Tony Dezuniga
  • Frank Giacoia RUNNER UP
  • Bob McLeod
  • Tom Palmer
  • Mike Royer
  • Josef Rubenstein
  • Joe Simon
  • Bernie Wrightson