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David Finch Spotlight Challenge Inkwell Awards Artists Announced

The non-profit Inkwell Awards, devoted to promoting the art of comic book inking, has released the list of 24 artists participating in its fourth annual Sinnott Inking Challenge Spotlight. This year’s Challenge features artist David Finch‘s take on DC’s iconic Batman. The artwork will be auctioned afterwards for fundraising.

The artists (in alphabetical order) are:

Gerry Acerno
Brett Breeding
John Beatty
Keith Champagne
Kevin Conrad
Marc Deering
John Dell
John Floyd
Scott Hanna
Scott Koblish
Tony Kordos
Jay Leisten
Criss Madd
Mark McKenna
Andrew Pepoy
Joe Prado
Rodney Ramos
Victor Olazaba Serna
Bill Sienkiewicz
Andy Smith
Mark Stegbauer
LeBeau Underwood
Keith Williams
Walden Wong

According to founder/director Bob Almond, the Spotlight Challenge, which grew out of its original Joe Sinnott Inking Challenge, showcases other contemporary, fan-favorite talents on a more 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.

The Challenge Spotlight furthers the inking advocacy’s dual mission of promoting the artform and educating the public. Blue-lined art files featuring a tightly pencilled David Finch Batman pinup are sent to the artists to finish and/or embellish in ink. Each inked page will be signed by Finch and the inker, and include a certificate of authenticity signed and numbered by Almond. All pages will then be auctioned off at a later date as a fundraiser. Fans will be able to see the difference in the pencilled and inked versions to better understand how much inkers contribute to the artform.

Inkwell Awards Announces David Finch Spotlight Challenge

Inkwell Awards

The non-profit Inkwell Awards, the only organization devoted to promoting the art of comic book inking, announces its fourth annual Sinnott Inking Challenge Spotlight focusing on the pencil art of a legendary comics creator. This year features artist David Finch‘s take on DC‘s iconic Batman. The artwork will be auctioned afterwards for fundraising. Previous pencillers used have included Jim Lee, Neal Adams, and Erik Larsen.

The original Joe Sinnott Challenge, which features pencils by the inking legend inked by various professionals, semi-professionals and amateur inkers, began in 2010 but is being postponed for next year due to scheduling reasons.

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 will be sent to just 24 artists to finish and/or embellish in ink. 

Each inked page will be signed by Finch and the inker, and include a certificate of authenticity signed and numbered by Almond. All pages will then be auctioned off at a later date as a fundraiser. Fans will be able to see the difference in the penciled and inked versions to better understand how much inkers contribute to the artform.

The list of participating inkers will be named later.

David Finch Batman

Inkwell Awards Changing Host Show Location from HeroesCon to the Great Philadelphia Comic Con!

The Inkwell Awards is announcing that their annual live awards ceremony will be relocating to the Great Philadelphia Comic Con! at the The Greater Philadelphia Expo Center in Oaks, PA, during April 12-14, 2019. Their awards ceremonies for the previous eight years, including 2018, were held at the June HeroesCon in Charlotte, NC. According to Inkwell Awards founder and director Bob Almond, it was HeroesCon promoter Shelton Drum who initially invited the non-profit organization to his long-running, family-friendly show in 2011. “We had been left hanging in the wind by a major convention, and Shelton, who had endured similar problems, wanted to support a kindred spirit and show that this altruistic, annual event could be done and well-supported.”

Almond added, “Changing venues is both sorrowful and exciting. Our presence at Heroes’ industry-respected and community-loved show further boosted our credibility and exposure, which helped with fundraising in the long run. We can truly thank HeroesCon for where we are now. But the 16-hour drives and related travel expenses each season would leave our budget almost wiped out.”

Regarding the location switch, Almond explained, “When Great Philadelphia Con!’s Creator Relations and Artist Alley Director Stan Konopka with promoter Christopher D. Wertz offered us their venue and funding support for all expenses, we were thrilled. A mere six-hour drive is a huge relief for us. Christopher’s convention has grown in a short time in reputation and attendance from both the celebrity/artist guests and the fans.”

Wertz gave the following statement:

“We at The Great Philadelphia Comic Con! would like to graciously thank the Inkwell Awards and Bob for honoring our show by choosing us to host the Inkwell Award Ceremony and its nominees at our April 2019 event and beyond. Stan has been working with Bob closely in order to create one of the best Awards Ceremonies in the business. We look forward to working together to make an amazing and enduring event that can grow with our show year over year.”

In a statement, Heroes promoter Drum said:

”It’s been eight years since Bob Almond made HeroesCon the home of The Inkwells. We have been privileged to be host to Bob and his team as they honored the true unsung heroes of comics, the Inkers. The annual Inkwell Awards ceremony– the anchor of our opening day programming– has spotlighted and awarded many of the greatest inkers in comic’s history.

“And now Bob is heading to Great Philadelphia Comic Con! and taking the Inkwells with him. They will be missed, but it is wonderful knowing Bob Almond will still be at it making the world a more appreciative place for our black-thumbed brethren. Godspeed, Bob.”

Almond concluded, “Shelton graciously took us in at a low-point for me. Now, as we celebrate The Inkwells’ 10th anniversary, it’s like progressing from one chapter of growth to a new one as we boldly embark on our second decade with Christopher and Stan.”

The Inkwell Awards is the only official 501(c)(3) non-profit organization whose mission is to promote and educate regarding the art form of comic-book inking, as well as annually recognize the best ink artists and their work. Established in 2008, the Inkwells are overseen by a volunteer committee of industry professionals and assisted by various professional ambassadors and contributors. They sponsor the Dave Simons Inkwell Memorial Scholarship Fund for the Kubert School and host the Joe Sinnott Hall of Fame Award.

Inkwell Awards Overhauls its Nomination Procedure

After 10 years, the Inkwell Awards, a non-profit organization devoted to public education and promotion of the art of comic-book inking, has changed its nomination procedure for its annual awards. For the first time, ink artists (“inkers”) are now invited to submit their work for consideration.

Previously, all award nominees in the Inkwells’ five categories were chosen exclusively by a volunteer Nomination Committee (“NomCom”), composed of various industry professionals, journalists, reviewers and supporters. This year, inkers (or their agents/publishers) may submit two to three pages of interior art from American comic books cover-dated 2018 for each category. Those will be evaluated by the NomCom, who will choose a minimum of two names and may also submit up to four of their own, per category. The Inkwells’ core committee will tally all results and choose the top names in each category for the final public ballot. Nominees for The Joe Sinnott Hall of Fame lifetime achievement award will continue to be chosen internally. The Inkwells’ core committee will remain ineligible to nominate, vote, submit work or be nominated for any inking award.

Those interested will have till December 31, 2018, to submit their work. Full details and instructions, including rules, are available online. Unlike some others, The Inkwell Awards will not charge a submission fee.

Final nominees will be decided by spring of 2019 when voting will be open for the public. The winners will be announced at the Inkwells’ live awards ceremony in the summer.

The five categories of The Inkwell Awards are:
1) Favorite Inker: favorite ink artist over the pencil work of another artist.
2) Most-adaptable: showing exceptional ink style versatility over other pencil artists (minimum of two cited sources).
3) Props award: ink artist deserving of more attention for their work over other pencillers.
4) The S.P.A.M.I: for favorite Small Press And Mainstream-Independent, inking over another penciller (non-Marvel or DC work).
5) All-in-one award: for favorite artist known for inking his/ her own pencil work.

The Inkwell Awards 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. Entering its 11th year, the organization is overseen by a volunteer committee of industry professionals and assisted by various professional ambassadors, numerous contributors and supporters. They sponsor the Dave Simons Inkwell Memorial Scholarship Fund for the Kubert School and host the Joe Sinnott Hall of Fame Award.

Inkwell Awards Changing Host Show Location from HeroesCon to East Coast Comicon

The Inkwell Awards is announcing that their annual live awards ceremony will be relocating to the East Coast Comicon at the Meadowlands Exposition Center in Secaucus, NJ, commencing May 17-19, 2019. Their awards ceremonies for the previous eight years, including 2018, were held at the June HeroesCon in Charlotte, NC.According to Inkwell Awards founder and director Bob Almond, HeroesCon promoter Shelton Drum invited the non-profit organization to his long-running, family-friendly show in 2011. “We had been left hanging by a major convention,” Almond said, “and Shelton, who had endured similar problems, wanted to support a kindred spirit and show that this altruistic, annual event could be done and well-supported.”

Almond added, “Changing venues is both sorrowful and exciting. Our presence at Heroes‘ industry-respected and community-loved show further boosted our credibility and exposure, which helped with fundraising in the long run. We can truly thank HeroesCon for where we are now. But the 16-hour drives and related travel expenses each season would leave our budget almost wiped out.”

When asked about the switch in locations, Almond explained, “When East Coast Comicon promoter Cliff Galbraith offered us his venue and funding support for the expenses, we were thrilled. A mere four-hour drive is a huge relief for us. Cliff‘s event began in 2011 and has grown in reputation and attendance since, from both the celebrity/artist guests and the fans.”

In a statement, Heroes promoter Drum said:

”It‘s been eight years since Bob Almond made Heroes Con the home of The Inkwells. We have been privileged to be host to Bob and his team as they honored the true unsung heroes of comics, the Inkers. The annual Inkwell Awards ceremony– the anchor of our opening day programming– has   spotlighted and awarded many of the greatest inkers in comic‘s history: Mike Royer, Rudy Nebres, Klaus Janson, Bob McLeod, Jerry Ordway and Joe Rubinstein, just to name a few.

“And now Bob is heading to East Coast Comicon and taking the Inkwells with him. They will be missed, but it is wonderful knowing Bob Almond will still be at it making the world a more appreciative place for our black-thumbed brethren. Godspeed, Bob.”

Almond concluded, “Shelton graciously took us in at a low-point for me. Now, as we celebrate The Inkwells‘ 10th anniversary, it‘s like progressing from one chapter of growth to a new one as we boldly embark on our second decade with Cliff.”

The Inkwell Awards is the only existing 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 the best ink artists and their work. The organization is overseen by a committee of industry professionals and assisted by various professional ambassadors and contributors. They sponsor the Dave Simons Inkwell Memorial Scholarship Fund for The Kubert School and host the Joe Sinnott Hall of Fame Award.

The 2018 Inkwell Awards 10th Anniversary Ceremony At Heroes Con

Voting results from the annual Inkwell Awards will be presented at the inking advocacy group’s live awards ceremony at Heroes Con in Charlotte, NC this month. The event, also celebrating the non-profit’s 10th anniversary, is scheduled for Friday June 15, 5:00 PM, at the Charlotte Convention Center, in room 209-210.

Bronze-age DC Comics ink artist and one of Jack Kirby’s top inkers, Mike Royer, is scheduled to appear as Guest of Honor.

The Inkwells have five categories: Favorite Inker, Most-Adaptable Inker, the “Props” award for under-recognized professionals, the S.P.A.M.I. for Small Press And Mainstream-Independent work, and the “All-in-One” for the artist who inks his/her own pencil art. Voters-–fans and professionals alike–all cast their ballots at the group’s website in April to show their support and choose their favorites.

Announced with the publicly-chosen award-winners will be the internally-voted two recipients of the yearly Joe Sinnott Hall of Fame Award and one winner of the annual Stacey Aragon Special Recognition Award. To celebrate their decade anniversary, the Inkwells have created the “Above & Beyond” Award for members, volunteers, and others who have served beyond the call of duty to promote the artform of comic book inking and it’s ink artists.

In addition to Royer, Almond will MC the event, while artist and longtime Inkwell contributor Dan Panosian will act as presenter. Recently-added Inkwell ambassador, artist Pat Broderick, will present the lifetime achievement awards. Also appearing will be veteran hostess Hailey Skaza-Gagne as spokesmodel Ms. Inkwell, who will be joined by 2011 Heroes Con Ms. Inkwell, Kathy Denise Taylor, in her first return to Heroes Con as a co-spokesmodel.

Other related guests at the Heroes show itself include Inkwell ambassadors Buzz and Cully Hamner. There may also be surprise appearances at the ceremony by member-creators, the award recipients or other supporters.

As an added bonus, the first 25 non-member attendees will receive a raffle ticket for a door prize. After the event, every ticket holder will also win a prize as explained at the ceremony.

During the show, The Inkwells will be set up in Artists Alley at a location to be announced soon at the Heroes Con website. To help raise much-needed funds, they’ll be offering (for donations) a variety of Inkwell merchandise, including their recently-released Ms. Inkwell Gallery art book, signed by cover artist Bill Sienkiewicz, Joe Sinnott, Bob Almond, and spokesmodels Hailey Skaza-Gagne, Skylar Lauren Godwin and Kathy Denise Taylor. (Their latest Joe Sinnott Inking Challenge Book and 10th Anniversary Album will be available later in the year.)

The Ms. Inkwell Gallery art book will be sold for a donation of $25 and if fans want to put in an order then s&h (USPS media mail at $5 and international locations after calculations).

Randy Green Draws Inkwell Awards 10th Anniversary Print

The Inkwell Awards 10th Anniversary treat has been announced with Randy Green revisiting the spokesperson and mascot!

It‘s been eight years since Randy Green co-created and designed their spokes-model Ms. Inkwell and he just finished penciling and inking a new image of Ms. India Wells; jungle girl on the prowl!

This sneak peek will be colored down the road and be available at each Inkwell Awards show appearances and on the Inkwell Awards site‘s Store page as a signed & #‘d “Inkwell Awards 10th anniversary” color print.

The Inkwell Awards is the only existing official 501(c)(3) non-profit organization whose mission is to educate and promote the art form of comic-book inking, as well as annually recognize and award the best ink artists and their work. Now approaching its 10-year anniversary, the organization is overseen by a committee of industry professionals, and assisted by various professional ambassadors and contributors. They sponsor the Dave Simons Inkwell Memorial Scholarship Fund for the Kubert School and host the Joe Sinnott Hall of Fame Award.

2017 Inkwell Awards Winners Announced

The Inkwell Awards has released the names of the winners of its 10th annual awards for excellence in the art form of comic book inking. As before, nominees were chosen by a separate and independent nomination committee; this year had more nominees than ever. Voting by professionals and fans alike took place via live ballot at the non-profit advocacy’s website. One winner was chosen in each of five categories based on American-based interior comic-book work cover-dated 2016.

Separately, the Inkwells internally selected the two recipients of the annual Joe Sinnott Hall of Fame Award and, this year, two recipients for the Special Recognition Award (SRA) category. Winners were contacted and many of the invited guests were present to receive their trophies during North Carolina’s Heroes Con, the host show for the Inkwells, for their seventh live ceremony. Winners and nominees are listed below, along with the percentage of votes received, where applicable.

FAVORITE INKER: Scott Hanna (21.06%)
(Action Comics, Batman, Justice League, Superman: Lois & Clark, Wonder Woman [DC]; A-Force, All-New Wolverine, Avengers: Standoff, Civil War II: The Fallen, Drax, Nova, Squadron Supreme, Uncanny Inhumans, Web Warriors, [Marvel]).
Other nominees: Sandra Hope-Archer (16.02%), Danny Miki (12.95%), Jonathan Glapion (12.53%),  Matt Banning (12.22%), Tim Townsend (11.44%), Eber Ferriera (9.15%),  Stefano Gaudiano (6.92%) and Mick Gray (5.2%)

MOST-ADAPTABLE INKER: Walden Wong (19.97%)
(Earth 2, Robin War [DC]; Jupiter’s Circle v2 [Image]; All-New Wolverine, Guardians of Infinity, Max Ride, Web Warriors [Marvel]).
Other nominees: Scott Hanna (14.87%), Sandra Hope-Archer (12.43%), Jonathan Glapion (12.38%), Mark Morales (11.23), Victor Olazaba (9.57%), Norm Rapmund (9.2%), Danny Miki (8.01%), Jay Leisten (4.42%), Wayne Faucher and Dexter Vines, both at (4.06%)

PROPS (inker deserving of more attention): Scott Hanna (24.34%)
(Action Comics, Batman, Justice League, Superman: Lois & Clark, Wonder Woman [DC]; A-Force, All-New Wolverine, Avengers: Standoff, Civil War II: The Fallen, Drax, Nova, Squadron Supreme, Uncanny Inhumans, Web Warriors, [Marvel]).
Other nominees: Jonathan Glapion (19.14%), Klaus Janson (18.72%), Dexter Vines (13%), Tony Kordos (12.64%), Andrew Hennessey (9.67%) and Jason Paz (6.76%)

S.P.A.M.I. (Small Press and Mainstream Independent): Jonathan Glapion (23.45%)(Reborn [Image]).
Other nominees: Stefano Gaudiano (23.09%), Karl Story (22.93%),  Brian Shearer (13.68%), Ryan Winn (12.43%) and Cliff Rathburn (6.66%)

ALL-IN-ONE (pencilling and inking together): Erik Larsen (18.46%)
(Savage Dragon [Image])
Other nominees: Nicola Scott (16.33%), Liam Sharp (16.28%), Stan Sakai (13.99%), Walter Simonson (12.95%), Jerome Opena (9.98%) and Joelle Jones (6.71%)

THE SPECIAL RECOGNITION AWARD (SRA): Violet Barclay, aka Valerie Smith (Golden/Silver Age) and Allen Milgrom (Bronze/Modern Age)

Other nominees (in alphabetical order): Michael Allred, Sy Barry, John Byrne, Ernie Chan, Jack Davis, Tony Dezuniga, Will Elder, Mike Esposito, Frank Frazetta, Gerhard, Geoff Isherwood, George Klein, Frank McLaughlin, Mike Mignola and Mike Royer.

THE JOE SINNOTT HALL OF FAME: Jerry Ordway and Rudy Nebres. Other nominees: Mike DeCarlo, Mark Farmer, Bob Layton, Pablo Marcos, Bob McLeod and Mike Royer.

2017 Inkwell Awards Ceremony at Heroes Con Headlined By Legends Joe Giella and Allen Bellman

Results from the 10th annual Inkwell Awards will be presented at the inking advocacy group’s 7th live awards ceremony at Heroes Con in Charlotte, NC. The awards ceremony is scheduled for Friday June 16, 5:00 PM at the Charlotte Convention Center, in room 209-210.

Golden/Silver Age ink artist and famed DC Comics mainstay Joe Giella is scheduled to appear as Guest of Honor. Golden Age and Timely (Marvel) pioneer and penciller/inker Allen Bellman will act as Guest Speaker for one of two Special Recognition Award recipients.

The Inkwells have five categories: Favorite Inker, the “Props” award for under-recognized professionals, the S.P.A.M.I. for Small Press And Mainstream-Independent work, Most-Adaptable Inker, and the “All-in-One” for the artist who inks his/her own pencil art. Thousands of voters cast their ballots at the group’s website in April to log their support and choose their favorites.

In addition to Giella and Bellman, other speakers/attendees include host and presenter Almond, hostess Hailey Skaza-Gagne as spokesmodel Ms. Inkwell, Inkwell Assistant Director/co-presenter and artist Mike Pascale, and other volunteer staff members. Announced with the publicly-chosen award-winners will be the internally-voted two recipients of the yearly Joe Sinnott Hall of Fame Award and two recipients of the third annual Special Recognition Award.

Other related guests at the Heroes show itself include Inkwell ambassadors Laura Martin, Mike McKone, Cully Hamner and J. David Spurlock. There may also be surprise appearances at the ceremony by member-creators, the award recipients or other supporters. 

As an added bonus, the first 25 non-member attendees will receive a raffle ticket for an automatic door prize. After the event, every ticket holder will win a prize as explained at the ceremony.

The Inkwells will be set up in Artists Alley at an as of yet unspecified location to be announced soon at the Heroes Con website, offering (for donations) their recently-released Ms. Inkwell Gallery art book, signed by cover artist Bill Sienkiewicz as well as Joe Sinnott, Bob Almond and Hailey Skaza-Gagne, along with plenty of other Inkwell merchandise to help raise much-needed funds. (The organization will delay the next Joe Sinnott Inking Challenge book until 2018 to celebrate their tenth anniversary.)

The Inkwell Awards (www.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 the best ink artists and their work. Now approaching it’s tenth year, the organization is overseen by a committee of industry professionals and assisted by various professional ambassadors and numerous contributors. They sponsor the Dave Simons Inkwell Memorial Scholarship Fund for the Kubert School and host the Joe Sinnott Hall of Fame Award.

Web site: inkwellawards.com.

The Inkwell Awards Voting Open From April 15-30

Who’s your favorite inker? The Inkwell Awards, a non-profit organization devoted to the education and promotion of the art of comic book inking, invites all to vote for the industry’s best of the year. The official public ballot will be available on the Inkwells’ homepage from April 15 through April 30.

Voting is open to fans and professionals alike. In addition to “Favorite Inker,” categories include “Most Adaptable,” “PROPS” (inkers deserving more attention), the “S.P.A.M.I.” (Small Press And Mainstream Independent) and “All-In-One” for pencillers who ink their own work.

As a courtesy, also listed on the ballot are the nominees for the Joe Sinnott Hall of Fame (“HoF”), a lifetime achievement honor for an outstanding inking career of 25 or more years in American comics, whose winners are chosen by an internal committee (to avoid a “popularity contest” where recent names have more influence than past masters).

Two years ago the Special Recognition Award (SRA) was introduced and nominees for it also listed on the ballot with voting being done internally. This lifetime achievement honor differs from the HoF award due to one or more factors such as the artist being out of the “public eye,” having limited name-recognition due to semi- or full retirement or death, limited-yet-influential output, social barriers such as gender/race, or other factors that might otherwise limit them from being nominated for a traditional HoF award. The SRA nominees are not listed this year but they will be discussed at the awards ceremony along with the SRA award recipients.

Once voting ends after April 30, the winners will be announced at the live awards ceremony at Heroes Con in Charlotte, NC on Friday, June 16th.

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