(FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: New Bedford, MA/USA—February 21 2020) The Inkwell Awards, the only non-profit organization devoted to public education and promotion of the art of comic book inking, is asking fans and professionals to choose their industry favorites. The official public ballot will be available on the Inkwells’ homepage from February 23 through 29.
Voting is open to all in five categories: “Favorite Inker,” “Most Adaptable,” “Props” (inkers deserving more attention), “The S.P.A.M.I.” (Small Press And Mainstream/Independent for non-Marvel/DC work) and “All-In-One” for artists who ink their own pencils. The ballot covers all printed American comic books cover-dated 2019.
“This is the second ballot with our revamped nomination procedure where inkers could submit their work in addition to those chosen by our internal nomination committee,” said Bob Almond, founder and director of The Inkwell Awards. “It made a huge difference and we’re thrilled to see many inkers submit their own work and several get nominated.”
He also added, “For years, too many inkers are passed over and go unnoticed by most awards events. Ours caters specifically to ink artists, allowing them to be recognized and appreciated for their best work. We encourage any and all who appreciate great artwork to participate and share on social media; the more voters, the better.”
The winners, along with the internally-chosen lifetime achievement accolades, the Joe Sinnott Hall of Fame award and the Stacey Aragon Special Recognition Award (SASRA), will be announced at the live awards ceremony during The Great Philadelphia Comic Con! in Oaks, PA the weekend of April 3-5.
Some of you might have noticed that for the past week this site had a different look. We’ve been working over the past year+ with new senior contributor Steven Freivogel to upgrade the venue and while it’s now uploaded it’s still a work in progress as we try to fine-tune it. This is the third site for our non-profit, the first being set up by committee member Jim Tournas in 2008 and the second version set up by committee member Sarah Covert (now Gerhardt) and Bob Almond in 2011. But now in 2020 as we are entering our second decade of existence the team wanted us to progress with the times. Much kind thanks to all the time & effort on the parts of not only Steven but Mike Pascale, Rhys Evans and Tim Aslat w/ Daniel Best (both who’ve been our webmasters since 2008 and were instrumental with the changeover). We continue to work at making our site the one-stop resource for all things inking!
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: (New Bedford, MA/USA—January 13, 2020) The Inkwell Awards, a non-profit advocacy for comic-book inking and ink artists, is retiring its original “Joe Sinnott Inking Challenge” after eight years.
Created by founder and director Bob Almond, the Challenge involved Sinnott, the organization’s first special ambassador, drawing or loosely sketching two characters for which he was known (or not have ever rendered) and then professional and amateur artists inking and/or embellishing them. The program was designed to educate fans, the public and other professionals regarding the process, contribution and inherent value of inking, a major part of the Inkwells’ mission. All of the blueline inked pages, signed by Sinnott and the inkers, were later donated by the contributors and auctioned on eBay, providing valuable fundraising for the organization.
Sinnott issued the following statement (signed with his Marvel nickname, “Joltin’ Joe Sinnott,”):
“As you all know, this past year, with the cancellation of the ‘Spider-Man’ syndicated strip, I decided to retire from comic-related work. This also included my participation in the Inkwell Awards’ annual Inking Challenge. It was a great privilege to play a part in all of these challenges, and I always enjoyed seeing everyone’s take on embellishing my pencilled drawings. I look forward to the release of the upcoming collection of the Joe Sinnott Inking Challenge in book form, and was glad to be a part of this for so many years. Now it is finally time for me to sit back, relax, and enjoy a well-deserved retirement. I look forward to seeing many great things from the Inkwell Awards. I thank you all for supporting them and being a part of this great organization.”
The Inkwells have also collected each year’s pencils-to inks comparisons in book form and a final, sixth one will be available in the coming weeks. Almond said, “We are immensely proud of this series of books as launched by Jim Tournas, Enrica Jang and Renee Woodruff. We truly thank Joe and son Mark for their stellar cooperation and accomplishments over the years. He more than deserves his happy retirement and we all agree that we want Joe to be nothing but happy and healthy after an extraordinary career of almost 70 years.”
The Challenge spin-off program, The Sinnott Inking Challenge Spotlight, which focuses on a different veteran or contemporary all-star artist, is still active and recently completed its fourth event.
So sorry to hear about the passing of Gerry at Newsarama who was a member of the Inkwell Yahoo Group in the 2000s, now regrettably canceled, that was involved with my formation of the Inkwell Awards. He was a member of the proud legacy of Filipino ink artists that made their mark first in the Bronze-age at Marvel & DC. On behalf of the Inkwell Awards may he rest in peace and sincere condolences to his wife, loved ones and fans.
Bob and the Inkwells were recently invited to the 4th Syracuse New York Comic Con, a new venue for us, taking place on Saturday December 7. FREE ADMISSION! We don’t normally attend one-day shows but the promoter Jason Randall is pulling all stops to accommodate and promote myself and the non-profit. The attending team will consist of Bob, Senior Contributor Mike J. Prast will once again act as show assistant and we’ll be debuting new Ms. Inkwell spokesmodel Becka Sargent. You can find out more info at their website. Our 2020 public appearances schedule will be posted in December. (*Becka is not replacing anyone. Hailey and Kathy are still active but will be appearing, much like Beck, part-time as they attempt to juggle their Inkwell duties around their jobs at home.)
IT’S TIME TO GET RECOGNIZED! Submit your work for free for the 2019 Inkwell Awards!
YOU, the ink artist (or your agent/publisher), can submit your work for nomination in any of our five categories. (Unlike some other awards, we do not charge a fee.) While our volunteer nomination committee (“NomCom”) can still submit their choices, they just can’t see all the wonderful work during the year from all publishers large and small. So it’s up to YOU! We know no one likes to read long emails, but this is important and worth it (previous winners/submitters can skip the “Who We Are” section).
WHO WE ARE:
In case you still haven’t heard, The Inkwell Awards (inkwellawards.com) is an official 501(c)(3) non-profit organization whose mission is to educate the public and promote the art form of comic-book inking, as well as annually recognize and award the best ink artists and their work. Founded in 2008, the organization is overseen by a volunteer committee of industry professionals and assisted by various pro ambassadors, numerous contributors and supporters. We sponsor the Dave Simons Inkwell Memorial Scholarship Fund for the Kubert School and host the Joe Sinnott Hall of Fame Award.
WHAT TO SEND:
1. Examples of TWO (minimum) to THREE (maximum) interior pages of published & printed comic-book ink work you’ve done from any USA-published comic book (per each category below) COVER-DATED 2019 (sorry, no webcomics unless also printed.). Send either links to your specific samples (not general site links), or low-res image files. (Do not send large files–we’re not a printer!) DO NOT SEND PHYSICAL COPIES–they will not be eligible.
(Make sure you read and understand the BIG RULES below before sending.)
2. Your NAME, preferred EMAIL ADDRESS, the TITLE/ISSUE #(s) and PUBLISHER.
3.The CATEGORY(-IES) to which it belongs. You may submit the same or different work to different categories, EXCEPT “Favorite Inker” and “Props”–pick one or the other. Categories are:
- Favorite Inker: favorite ink artist over the pencils of another artist. (Can’t be nominated for “Props.”)
- Most-adaptable: showing exceptional ink style versatility over other pencil artists. (Minimum TWO pages per penciller, up to three.)
- Props award: ink artist deserving of more attention for their work over other pencillers.
- The S.P.A.M.I: for favorite Small Press And Mainstream-Independent comic book ink work over another pencil artist (Non-Marvel or DC).
- All-in-one award: for favorite artist inking his/her own pencils.
WHEN TO SEND: The deadline is DECEMBER 31st, 2019 (we’ll post reminders, but earlier is better).
PLEASE help us help you by following the directions and rules specifically. If not, your work cannot be considered. We are merely a few working professionals who volunteer when time allows so we don’t have the time/manpower to micro-manage.
THE BIG RULES (Please read):
-Inks can be with traditional or digital tools (e.g., brush, pen, marker, stylus, Apple Pen, Wacom, etc., but NOT just pencils darkened/manipulated via Photoshop/software–must be drawn by HAND).
-Work must have been printed in the USA with a 2019 cover date. No Web-only comics.
-Our volunteer NomCom may also submit their choices. All entries will be considered equally and tallied.
-The core committee is not permitted to nominate, nor vote, for anyone (so save your bribes).
-All links sent must be to the specific pages being considered. Any general site links (“JohnDoe.com,” DeviantArt portfolios, etc.) will be ignored. No physical copies.
-If work does not meet the criteria above or is not submitted in accordance with these rules, it will not be considered. Fraudulent entries will be voided and will result in your not being considered for any future awards (and any awards won will be forfeited and given to the runner-up).
–The Inkwell Awards is not responsible for any power outages, server issues, software or hardware malfunctions, human error, acts of God, zombie apocalypses and any other stuff beyond our control.Again, if you have questions or need more info, send an email to either firstname.lastname@example.org, or to me directly at the address below.
Thank you and good luck!
Bob Almond (and The Inkwell Awards Committee)
Four months have passed since the live awards ceremony took place in April at our new host show at The Great Philadelphia Comic Con! but we recently received the material and multimedia senior contributor Ray Burke broke up the long, full version (above) into smaller videos for our youtube account if that’s easier for some who don’t have time to slog through this, especially since we had non-stop disaster and glitches galore for our first appearance at the venue as mentioned in this video. We’ve already planned to handle the recording ourselves next time so that coverage will be almost immediate after the end of the show weekend in 2020. That’s the plan anyway!
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: (New Bedford, MA/USA—June 21, 2019) The Inkwell Awards, a non-profit organization devoted to promoting the art of comic book inking, will auction the artwork for their fourth annual Sinnott Inking Challenge Spotlight, which focuses on DC’s Batman pencil art of award-winning creator David Finch. The fundraiser event debuts on June 23.
The Sinnott Inking Challenge Spotlight, which grew out of the Inkwell’s original Joe Sinnott Inking Challenge, showcases various contemporary, fan-favorite talents on a limited scale with veteran published inkers who may or may not have participated in other challenges. The previous three pencillers were Jim Lee, Neal Adams and Erik Larsen.
This year’s 24 participating ink artists (in alphabetical order) are:
Gerry Acerno, Ken Branch, Brett Breeding, AJ Cassetta, Keith Champagne, Kevin Conrad, Marc Deering, John Dell, Guy Dorian Sr., John Floyd, Scott Hanna, Tony Kordos, Jay Leisten, Criss Madd, Jose Marzan Jr., Mark McKenna, Andrew Pepoy, Rodney Ramos, Bill Sienkiewicz, Andy Smith, Mark Stegbauer, LeBeau Underwood, Keith Williams and Walden Wong.
“We are excited to see the amazing work from such a skilled and talented group,” said founder/director Bob Almond. “We realize schedules are tight and ever-changing so we are grateful to those able to step up for this one. I want to credit committee vet Erick Korpi for not only initiating this year’s program but for recruiting A.J. Cassetta, the Kubert School student recipient of the 10th annual Dave Simons Inkwell Memorial Scholarship Award, to the line-up!”
The Challenge Spotlight furthers the inking advocacy’s dual mission of promoting the artform and educating the public. Blue-lined art boards featuring a tightly pencilled David Finch Batman pinup were sent to the artists to finish and/or embellish in ink. Each inked page is signed by Finch and the inker, and includes a certificate of authenticity signed and numbered 1 to 24 by Almond. All pages will be auctioned off on eBay as a fundraiser. Fans will be able to see the difference in the pencilled and inked versions through a gif to better understand how much inkers contribute to the artform.
“On behalf of the Inkwells,” said Almond, “our sincerest thanks to DC, David, the inkers, and all involved for their cooperation, support of our program, and appreciation of ink artists.”