Created Art

Recreated inked

Created Pencils

Recreated Pencils

Kirby Pencils

Original Pencils

Published Version

Published Version
Les Toil's picture
Posted by: Les Toil (not verified) | January 26, 2011

A tragedy

I've always thought George Bell's inking over Kirby's work was a great tragedy and I wish there was a way for Marvel (or someone) to find the budget to do all those pages justice again. And as much as I defend Colletta's Forth World inking of Kirby's art, I'd also love to see a capable inker re-do all those early Kirby/Colletta Thors. So Tom Kraft recreated Kirby's pencils?? He's pretty damn phenomenal from what I can see!

Anonymous's picture
Posted by: Anonymous (not verified) | August 16, 2011



George Roussos'/George Bell's inking jobs are a travesty. Fantastic Four issues 21 - 27 ARE UNREADABLE. He literally ignored Jack Kirby's pencils and re-did much of the art.


Krackles's picture
Posted by: Krackles | August 16, 2011

Ringing a Bell

Yes, Bell butchered Kirby's pencils but I get the same kind of feeling from Colletta.

albabe's picture
Posted by: albabe | January 6, 2012


I'm not the biggest fan of Roussous' Inking on Jack... but it certainly wasn't a "travesty." And actually, as much as I love Joe's work... this is just a little too "round" for me. I'd love to see Walt Simonson Ink this. I bet it would be amazing!

I'm curious who did the "Created Pencils" on this?

(Oops, sorry Tom. I didn't see your Pencil Credit over there on the Left. My bad... Nice job, too!)

Here's a fun Surfer that I Inked over a blueline of Jack's Pencils. It's okee... not too bad:

Krackles's picture
Posted by: Krackles | January 6, 2012

Cosmic size

A bit too small sized Al, can't get a good look at your surfer.

albabe's picture
Posted by: albabe | January 9, 2012

Hey Krackles!

Here's a bigger one. Keep in mind that this was done for an Inking WorkShop... and then finished at Comiccon when someone wanted to buy it... It's not completely up to snap... but it's okee, considering.

Krackles's picture
Posted by: Krackles | January 9, 2012

Twist and Tweak

Nice. Not just the regular squiggles, you took a twist on them.
By the way, where did you get the pencils from, the Jack Kirby Collector?

Odkin's picture
Posted by: Odkin (not verified) | June 3, 2012

I met Jack a couple times at

I met Jack a couple times at conventions and store events in So Cal. One time I told him how I didn't like Roussos' inking his work and he looked at me like I insulted his brother - "You didn't like INKY?".

Jack didn't really care about who inked his work. Once it came off his pencil he was done with it and on to the next thing. Roussos did some interesting work in the golden age through the 1950's, but by the 1960's his efforts took a step backwards, while Kirby's were moving forwards. A horrible combinaiton.

patrick ford's picture
Posted by: patrick ford | June 4, 2012

Kirby and Inking

There is evidence Kirby cared a lot more about inking than he let on in interviews.
One example is the degree of finish in his pencils once he lost control of the final product. In the '40s and '50s Kirby often inked his own work (particularly in the '50s) or was able to retouch inking by other S&K studio inkers where he saw fit. During those decades Kirby's pencils almost never included careful rendering or spotted black areas.
Once Kirby lost control of the inking process he began developing a pencil style which should have left nothing to the imagination of the inker. Kirby even commented he saw the inkers as "service people" whose job was to make the pencils ready for reproduction. His preference for Mike Royer is a strong indication Kirby wanted his pencils followed closely by the inker. It's also interesting that when Royer deviated from Kirby's pencils when inking Big Barda Kirby pasted over Mike's inks with corrected Barda faces he inked himself.
One thing to keep in mind with Kirby is he would not criticize the work of a fellow professional in an interview...with one notable exception.

Crusher Creel's picture
Posted by: Crusher Creel | June 4, 2012

Kirby and Inking

Who was the exception... If it isn't too crass to ask?

Krackles's picture
Posted by: Krackles | June 4, 2012

Happy to oblige

That would be Vinnie Colletta.

patrick ford's picture
Posted by: patrick ford | June 4, 2012

Not Colletta

Obviously it's Stan Lee.
To my knowledge Kirby was never openly critical of Colletta in an interview. This is a real exception to comments about Colletta by a number of pros who were openly critical of Colletta. One example from Don Heck: "A bad inker can kill artwork. I got some pages back once, and I tore them up. That's how bad the inking was. When I went over to DC in 1977 the first comic I did was Wonder Woman. I got pulled off that because they didn't like what I was doing. Someone else was inking it---Vince Colletta. He was the art director at the time so what could I say to him, but I didn't like it. An inker can take artwork and destroy it. I have very seldom seen an inker make artwork look better. Tom Palmer...Well Tom's an artist. Ink style is like handwriting. Most times someone has inked over me. Not that I wanted it that way. The company wants it. But I'm doing Wonder Woman again now (1984), because I wanted to ink it."
An example of how Kirby skirted being critical of pros are comments he made about writer Dave Wood. I've seen Dave Wood mentioned in quite a few interviews by various people and the one thing they have in common is everyone but Kirby will say Wood had a serious drinking problem. If asked Kirby will say something vague like, "He would disappear, I could never find him."
It's the same with Mort Weissinger. EVERYONE in comics EXCEPT Kirby slams Weissinger. When Kirby was asked about Weissinger he said they got along well, and mentioned Weissinger dropped by the house to visit. Kirby did mention Weissinger didn't like Roz's matzo ball soup.

Crusher Creel's picture
Posted by: Crusher Creel | June 4, 2012

Kirby and Inking

Yeah... not surprised...
His fine line scratchy "style" has not held up well in the Masterworks either.... lots of details dropping out...
that is, the details he actually inked! haha I understand he took shortcuts...
Not knocking him entirely, tho.... As a young reader (many many years ago) I just accepted the art for what
it was and was used to Vinnie as the "look" of Thor... I even accepted the George Bell FF issues (especially FF#22) which somehow fit (for me) with the comical tone of the book at the time.
It never occurred to my naive mind (back then) that the inkers may not have labored over each and every detail
and nuance.... that many were hired because they could get a book done fast and beat the deadline.

Crusher Creel's picture
Posted by: Crusher Creel | June 4, 2012


I (also) have never read Kirby say anything disparaging about a fellow artist.... I think that just speaks to the character of the man he was. I'm not saying he was perfect or anything but I think he was careful of what he said that might end up hurting someone... especially in print.

Crusher Creel's picture
Posted by: Crusher Creel | June 4, 2012


Too bad he (Kirby) was not always granted the same consideration....

Krackles's picture
Posted by: Krackles | June 4, 2012

Open Mind

Kirby didn't mind to openly have Colletta stepping away from his Fourth World books.
To my knowledge, this is something quite unprecedented for him, especially regarding Kirby's ethic and respect for his peers.

Crusher Creel's picture
Posted by: Crusher Creel | June 4, 2012

Kritical Kirby

Sorry... I got a little lost in the posts... Yes, I would say that Stan was obviously one that Jack had "called out" in interviews... I was thinking more on the line of artists...

Crusher Creel's picture
Posted by: Crusher Creel | June 4, 2012

Kritical Kirby

I would imagine that Jack would have wanted the best inker he could get on his Fourth World books... considering he was "on fire" and in high creative mode. He was working on a "novel" after all.... I can't imagine him being thrilled with getting Vinnie from the get go....

MXavier's picture
Posted by: MXavier | June 4, 2012

Just an aside about Tom --

Just an aside about Tom -- he's an all around great talent always has been. Under-rated. He's also a damn good colorist. He really got into it using bend-days when others weren't (I think the rate was $4 a page, no one wanted to take the time) -- but look at him and Neal on the Avengers, the 'Fantastic Voyage' riff though the Vision's body -- all the really beautifully subtle work was lost when it was reprinted in the Masterpiece edition

haze54's picture
Posted by: haze54 | October 18, 2013

That looks great!

The Sinnott version is quite tasty!

albabe's picture
Posted by: albabe | October 25, 2013

I wonder who the little turd is...

...that posted "childish inking job"?

Amazing how petty and/or insipidly stupid some folks are.

Krackles's picture
Posted by: Krackles | October 26, 2013

Chill Dish Irking Jab?

Not sure to understand… Who/what are we talking about?

kc's picture
Posted by: kc (not verified) | October 26, 2013

childish inking job

it was MY opinion everyone is welcome to one; no flames no ill mannered language no trash talk

just my opinion thank you

Now Mike Royer...there we're talkin' !!!

I am NOT an inker; NO IDEA what kind of job *I* could do...I was a CAD man for years and an IT specialist

We used India ink sparingly when we made nameplates and the like; mostly for touch up and when we needed larger areas in black for photo reproduction; no quills either; just fine brushes

Until CAD came along it was by hand and LEROY lettering baby...

Krackles's picture
Posted by: Krackles | October 26, 2013

Kinder Shock of Late

Who did a childish inking job? Where?
Did Colletta start practicing butchery at the kinder garden?

Krackles's picture
Posted by: Krackles | October 26, 2013

Legion Air Time

Damn, each time I read Mr Gordon comments, I can't help but missing his work with Giffen on Legion of Super-heroes.

kc's picture
Posted by: kc (not verified) | October 27, 2013

childish inking job redux

I opined that THIS was a childish inking job;

I never liked Colletta PERIOD

Why some would get so upset at an opinion is beyond me

albabe's picture
Posted by: albabe | October 28, 2013

First of all...

Just to clear-up a few things:

I responded to an email I got from this site/page where someone anonymously said, and I quote, "childish inking job." That's all she wrote... and I responded wondering who left such a snitty little comment. My problem with the internet is its anonymity and how some folks just Flame Forums with crap rather than thoughtful comments.

Then the person who supposedly posted that comment (that I assume was pulled by the admin) claimed responsibility and responded as "kc (not verified)..."

To kc (not verified):

The "This" you seem to be talking about (the page above) is Inked by Joe Sinnott. This is NOT the original. Its a gorgeous re-inking of the original page.

You also said: "Why some would get so upset at an opinion is beyond me."

I didn't notice anyone getting "upset" at all. I did notice myself commenting that someone was being a jerk.

Unlike your claims of your own understanding/ability/etc., I actually am an Inker. Been doing it for a very long time. I also am not a big fan of Vinny. I think he massacred a lot of nice Pencils... but not always because of his Inking ability, which is clearly very adept, especially if you look at the way he Inked Women.

I've tried to learn as I've gotten older, not to piss on Professional People that I'm not all that crazy about. Its difficult sometimes. I've also learned a lot about Inking over my years of Inking and as much as I'm not all that enamored of Vinny, I do think he's pretty good at some things (the things he didn't ignore and erase because he didn't feel like Inking them). I have a good bud that owns a really nice Thor page by Jack and Vinny, and seeing it up close and personal, I thought there was a lot to applaud. His Inking of Organic things like this giant tree in the foreground was really neato and I learned a lot just staring at it. Also, Vinny always did nice Hair, especially on Women.

Hey krackles: Thanx for the kudos. Its always appreciated. I'd work with Keith again, in a heartbeat. I love his Pencils and as much as I'm my own nastiest critic, I think I did a decent job working over him. In fact, I think we meshed pretty well in general.

Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.