Inkwell Awards

Inkwell Award
Awarded for Excellence in comic book inking
Country United States
Presented by The Inkwell Awards Committee
First awarded July, 2008
Official website

The Inkwell Award, sometimes shortened to the Inkwells, is a trophy given in the field of inking in American comic books. The awards were partially named after the Yahoo group whose members include many in the inking community,[1] and after the personal website name of organization founder Bob Almond.[2] The awards concept was created in an "Inkblots" column by Almond in Sketch Magazine #35 in 2007, which saw print in 2008 after the group formation.[3] The mission statement is, "To promote and educate about the craft of comic book inking and to show recognition for ink artists."[4]


In January 2008, Bob Almond began an online discussion on the Inkwell Yahoo Group about recognition for comic book inkers. where the topic of an award was broached. Almond invited participants from the group to form a core committee.[5] The founding members were artists Tim Townsend, Jim Tournas, and Bill Nichols, and writer Daniel Best.[6] Artist Adam Hughes and DC Comics editor Mike Marts were recruited as ambassadors to lend support.[7]

For year one, the committee selected several career-retrospective categories.[8] The resulting ballot was open and ran for two months from April through May with the committee selecting nominations for the Hall of Fame award, the "Joe Sinnott", named in honor of that veteran inker.[5] Voting took place online and was open to the public.[9] Following the inaugural results,[10] Townsend departed in July and Nichols in August.[6] The core group choose as successor artist representative Bob Shaw in November and artist-writer Dave Simons in December.[6][11][12][13] An Inkwell Awards forum was created September 16, 2008.[11]

The following year, with the partially revised ballot categories, a separate Nomination Committee was selected to choose nominees whose work had appeared in the previous year.[8][14] The election took place for one month in June 2009.[14][15] Following Simons' death,[16] the core created the Dave Simons Inkwell Memorial Scholarship for students attending the Joe Kubert School of Cartoon and Graphic Art. Artist Nathan Massengill joined the core after the 2009 awards were announced.[17] In January 2010, artist Ethan Van Sciver joined as ambassador.[18]

Wizard Entertainment announced in February 2010 that it would support the Inkwell Awards through promotion and space at its shows, and by sponsoring the awards' first live presentation, scheduled to take place at The New England Comic Con on October 1–3, 2010.[19] Voting was rescheduled from June to August.[20] This presentation did not take place, however. In 2011, Heroes Convention took up the position of host show for the annual live presentation ceremony.[21]

In March 2010, the organization introduced its spokesperson character, Ms. Inkwell, conceived by Almond and designed by artist Randy Green with assistance from Massengill.[22] The character debuted publicly at the Pittsburgh Comicon on April 23, 2010.[22]


Inker Michael Kellar is assistant director of the Inkwell Awards, overseeing auctions and fundraising. Mike Pascale (storyboardist, writer, and artist) is the copy & graphics assistant, handling public relations announcements, proofreading, and fundraising. Erick "the Guru" Korpi oversees the Dave Simons Inkwell Memorial Scholarship Fund. He has been the Ms. Inkwell Model Liaison in 2011 and 2013).

Some committee members do not currently serve full-time. They include Stacey Aragon (who served on the committee from November 2011 to June 2012, handling social networking, press release circulation, and fundraising); Sarah L. Covert (who was technical consultant from November 2011 to August 2013), and Joe Goulart (who was the administrative assistant for conventions, Ms. Inkwell model liaison, and fundraiser from January 2013 to September 2014).


The Inkwell Awards are self-funded and rely entirely on donations.[23] A 2010 donation book produced by Jimmy Tournas debuted at the Boston Comic Con that April.[24]

Award winners

Favorite Inker
Favorite ink artist over the pencil work of another artist from award year cover-dated, interior, American comic book material.

Favorite Finisher / Embellisher

Most-Prolific Inker

Most-Adaptable Inker
Ink artist showing exceptional ink style versatility over other pencil artists in award year interior, cover-dated, American comic book material.

Props Award
Ink artist deserving of more attention for their work over other pencilers from award year interior cover-dated American comic book material.

MVP Award

The Call of Duty Award

The "SPAMI" Award (Small Press and Mainstream-Independent)
Favorite Small Press And Mainstream-Independent award year interior, cover-dated, American comic book ink work over another pencil artist (Non-Marvel or DC work).

The All-in-One Award
Favorite artist known for inking his/ her own pencil work in award year interior, cover-dated, American comic book material.

Special Recognition Award

The Joe Sinnott Hall of Fame Award
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).


The position of ambassador is one of honor and appreciation.[38] It recognizes creators for their support for the Inkwell Awards. Unless noted otherwise, all ambassadors continue to hold this position.

Special Ambassadors


The Inkwell Awards have supporting artists who support inkers. These artists who help advocate for inkers are called ambassadors. [39]

Guests of honor and keynote speakers

At many of the live ceremonies, notable comic book creators are invited as guests of honor and keynote speakers.


Volunteer contributors[6][7] include artist Dan Panosian, who designed the Inkwell Awards logo. In January 2010, artist Randy Green was added as visual designer of the Ms. Inkwell charity spokesperson character, personified by model Chrissy Cutler.[22]


  1. Message From Bob Almond
  2. Bob Almond's Homepage
  3. Sketch Magazine #35, Blue Line Pro, 2008, p. 45
  4. Inkwell Awards Homepage
  5. 1 2 "CBGXtra Forum, The Ticker". Archived from the original on February 26, 2008. Retrieved 2009-10-22.
  6. 1 2 3 4 Daniel Best & James Tournas. "The Inkwell Awards". The Inkwell Awards. Retrieved 2009-08-20.
  7. 1 2 "Inkwell Awards Forum". Retrieved 2009-10-22.
  8. 1 2 Gelbwasser, Mike (2009-05-09). "The Men in Black: Inkwell Awards voting starts soon - Sun Chronicle Online Community". Retrieved 2009-08-20.
  9. "Newsarama Forum". Newsarama. 2008-05-14. Retrieved 2009-10-22.
  10. Daniel Best & James Tournas. "The Inkwell Awards". The Inkwell Awards. Retrieved 2009-08-20.
  11. 1 2 Daniel Best & James Tournas. "The Inkwell Awards". The Inkwell Awards. Retrieved 2009-08-20.
  12. "Inkwell Awards Forum - Welcome aboard, Bob Shaw!!". 2008-11-11. Retrieved 2009-08-20.
  13. "Inkwell Awards Forum - Dave Simons Joins The Inkwell Awards". Retrieved 2009-08-20.
  14. 1 2 "Inkwell Awards Forum - The official 2009 Inkwell Awards press release". 2009-05-18. Retrieved 2009-08-20.
  15. Daniel Best & James Tournas (2009-06-30). "The Inkwell Awards". The Inkwell Awards. Retrieved 2009-08-20.
  16. "Inkwell Awards Forum - Dave Simons: 1954-2009". 2009-06-10. Retrieved 2009-08-20.
  17. "Inkwell Awards Forum - Nathan Massengill and The Dave Simons Scholarship". Retrieved 2009-08-20.
  18. "Inkwell Awards Forum - Ethan Van Sciver named new Inkwells ambassador". Retrieved 2010-04-03.
  19. "Wizard Entertainment press release on October 2010 New England Comic Con". Retrieved 2010-04-03.
  20. "Newsarama press release posted: 22 February 2010". Retrieved 2010-04-03.
  21. "Inkwell Ballot Goes LIVE w/ a SITE RELAUNCH on April 1st! Awards Ceremony at Heroes Con in June!".
  22. 1 2 3 "Inkwell Awards debut Ms. Inkwell". Retrieved 2010-04-03.
  23. Books, Blaq (2008-02-15). "20th Century Danny Boy: Presenting...THE INKWELL AWARDS". Retrieved 2009-08-20.
  24. "Inkwell Awards Forum - New 2010 Donation book to debut at Boston Comic Con". Retrieved 2010-04-03.
  25. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Inkwell Awards 2008 Winners
  26. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Inkwell Awards 2009 Winners
  27. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Inkwell Awards 2010 Winners
  28. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Inkwell Awards 2011 Winners
  29. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Inkwell Awards 2012 Winners
  30. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Inkwell Awards 2013 Winners
  31. 1 2 3 4 5 6 Inkwell Awards 2014 Winners
  32. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Inkwell Awards 2015 Winners
  33. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Inkwell Awards 2016 Winners
  34. YouTube - Scott Hanna - Heroes Convention 2011
  35. YouTube - Arthur Thibert - Heroes Convention 2011
  36. YouTube - Kevin Nowlan - Heroes Convention 2011
  37. YouTube - J. David Spurlock - Heroes Convention 2011 - Posthumous acceptance on behalf of Wally Wood
  38. "Inkwell Awards Ambassadors".
  39. Inkwell Award Ambassadors
  40. First Comics News Press Release - Starlin, Meth, and Martin as Inkwell Awards Ambassadors
  41. First Comics News Press Release - Starlin, Meth, and Martin as Inkwell Awards Ambassadors
  42. First Comics News Press Release - Rich Buckler named Inkwell Awards Ambassador
  43. The Joe Shuster Awards: Congratulations to Francis Manapul and the other winners of the 2011 Inkwell Awards
  44. Inkwell Awards at 2011 HeroesCon
  45. She Never Slept: The 2012 Inkwell Awards
  46. YouTube - Inkwell Awards 2012 Ceremony, Bob McLeod, Keynote Speaker (Introduction)
  47. YouTube - Inkwell Awards 2012 Ceremony, Bob McLeod, Keynote Speaker (Speech)
  48. She Never Slept: 2013 Inkwell Awards
  49. Inkwell Awards: 2013 Inkwell Awards Celebrate Inkers at 3rd Annual HeroesCon Awards Ceremony
  50. YouTube - Inkwell Awards 2013 Ceremony, Jimmy Palmiotti, Keynote Speaker
  51. Everyone's Wrong and I'm Right (The Blog of Clifford Meth): Inkwell Awards 2014 Winners and Hall Of Fame
  52. Inkwell Awards: Bill Sienkiewicz is Guest of Honor at 2014 HeroesCon Awards Ceremony
  53. YouTube - Inkwell Awards 2014 Ceremony, Bill Sienkiewicz Guest of Honor
  54. First Comic News: Guest of Honor Klaus Janson to speak at the 2015 Inkwell Awards Ceremony during Heroes Con
  55. First Comics News: Special Appearance by Jim Steranko to Highlight the 2016 Inkwell Awards Ceremony at Heroes Con
  56. YouTube - Inkwell Awards 2016 Ceremony, Jim Steranko Special Appearance
  57. Inkwell Awards 2016 Post-Show Video and Transcript
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