original art archive

The Jack Kirby Original Art Digital Archive (JKOADA)

In 2006, The Jack Kirby Museum started the Jack Kirby Original Art Digital Archive (JKOADA) with the ambitious goal of archiving every available piece of Jack Kirby’s art. The Archive preserves Jack Kirby’s wonderful works in a lasting archive of high resolution scans. This Archive not only provides amazing images for the Jack Kirby Museum and the What if Kirby websites but also helps scholars and historians in their research endeavours. 

The efforts of the JKOADA are ongoing. Rand Hoppe, curator of the Jack Kirby Museum and Tom Kraft, creator of this site, What if Kirby and a Jack Kirby Museum Trustee attend many U.S. comic conventions with wide-fromat Epson 10000XL professional scanners to get the highest quality scans for the Archive. In addition, both travel to private collector’s homes and offices with these scanners to archive their Kirby art collections. JKOADA currently holds more than 2,000 pages.

The gallery section of this website displays a portion of the scans from the Archive. With WiK free membership, members can zoom into each piece of art at 300% the original size to see extreme detail. In addition, members can rate and comment on each piece of art. There are many future features and improvements planned for WiK. If you find WiK of value, please give whatever you can to help keep the site up and fund ongoing costs and efforts.

Why is this important?

The JKOADA project’s main purpose is to create a lasting record of Kirby’s art for everyone to study and enjoy – now and long into the future. With the passage of time, any original art not in museums or galleries runs the risk of deteriorating or being destroyed in natural and man-made disasters. The Kirby Museum is dedicated to keeping Kirby’s legacy preserved by building this digital Archive.

Have your Kirby art archived!

Please contact Tom Kraft of What if Kirby (tomkraft@whatifkirby.com) or Rand Hoppe of the Jack Kirby Museum (rhoppe@kirbymuseum.org) or  to have your art archived at a convention or your location.

Owners of the original art have the option to have a courtesy credit on each page of art displayed on What if Kirby, to remain anonymous or to specify whether or not to post the art on any website.

If you have access to a wide format scanner, you can also scan your art yourself. Here are the specifications for providing archival quality scans:

  • 100%
  • 600 DPI
  • RBG (24 bit color)
  • Scan front and back
  • Try to keep the art as straight as possible
  • No unsharp masking or auto adjust settings
  • Include space in between edges of paper and scanned image (don’t crop the scan to the edge of the paper, let us see the actual paper edge and some non-paper space)
  • If available save in Digital Negative (DNG) format or as TIFF with LZW compression
  • If you want to stitch the pieces together, go ahead, but send the pieces (halves) as well as the result of your stitching. We prefer to archive “raw” scans, before any rotation or adjustment of any kind. to archive “raw” scans, before any rotation or adjustment of any kind.

Files size will vary between 150-210 MB each. They can be sent via YouSendit (www.yousendit.com), Dropbox (www.dropbox.com) or we can arrange for an FTP file transfer, upon request. Please contact me at tomkraft@whatifkirby.com to make arrangements.