Friday, January 20, 2012


One of the things I've been very lucky with in my career as a comic book illustrator is the inkers I've worked with. With the exception of a couple of small stories I've been fortunate enough to work with true professionals who have not only added to, but also changed the way I approach my work.

For anyone who doesn't know, inking is the act of refining comic book pencil art by adding permanent ink linework and blacks to the art over the pencils. There have been projects that are not inked but instead are finished worth super tight pencils, like the recent work I've done with Zenescope and Bluewater. I have also  sometimes been required to ink my own work like the third Stormy Tempest story I did for AC Comics a year ago:

As fun as these things are, I actually think that it can be more fun to see how someone else interprets my work and adds their own flair to it. The first time I experienced this was with Jeff Austin, my inker on the AC Comics work I did. I think that Jeff has an Alfredo Alcala style that really added to an enhanced my work. I realized, after seeing his work over mine, that I really needed to step up my game.

I was absolutely thrilled when I saw the work that Paul Fricke did on a recent story I just penciled. Paul is the co-creator of Trollords, author and illustrator of Night Of The Bedbugs, and inked Mike Parobeck on DC Comics/Impact series The Fly.  Paul's inking, which was done digitally was of a simpler style than I drew the pages. It reflected my originals but also was very much his work. I love how this came out:

The last image is the cover of Bluewater's Victoria's Secret Service #1, which is due out this June. Originally, the covers were going to be colored from my pencils, but my friend Andrew Pepoy expressed interest in inking them. Andrew has worked on everything ( and I mean EVERYTHING)- from stories published by Marvel, DC, Darkhorse, and Archie Comics to designing a new look for Little Orphan Annie and creating a tap dancing superhero musical play. It has been a real honor to have him ink my work.

While I've been happy with this part of the process of comics creating, there are others which can seriously affect how someone's work looks. More on that next time...