Comics Creators

What a difference an inker makes


Came across these original pencil pages along with their inked finish and thought they were pretty interesting.

Here’s Joe Rubinstein’s inking on top of Frank Miller’s pencils:

I’ve been keen to try to find some original pencil pages from Mark Silvestri to see what a difference Dan Green made from their partnership on Uncanny X-Men in the 80s but was only able to find this example from Fantastic Four vs. X-Men, inked by Joe Rubinstein:

In both cases Rubinstein’s taken a lot of liberties and only used the original pencils as a guide. Anyone know any other examples where the pencils looked pretty different to the finished version?

Knowing Liefeld’s drawing style, here’s another where we can assume the finished inks are pretty different from the pencils:

I think it’s fascinating when you see an image you know so well like that Wolverine pic and you find out the penciller had a completely different image in mind when it was first drawn!


Wow. I actually really like the uninked version of the Wolverine picture. To be fair to Silvestri, it looks like Rubinstein was acting as more of a Finisher than an Inker in those pictures. There is a bit of a slide in those relationships. I also loved the days when McFarlane would ink Liefeld’s work. It was always interesting.


Interesting stuff!

There are some quite well-known examples of inkers taking liberties or shortcuts compared to the original art. I remember seeing a fair few Kirby FF pages where certain figures and backgrounds in the pencils had been completely left out of the final page (I don’t want to pile on Vince Colletta, but I’m pretty sure it was him).


In fact, there’s an interesting blog post about how different inkers have interpreted Kirby here:


Yep, that’s interesting to see how much nicer Kirby’s pencils were on this one:

And that example of him inking himself is probably the prettiest thing I’ve seen of Kirby’s!


I remember seeing some Thor redesigns that I think were done completely by Kirby (including colours) and they were uttery beautiful. They should have cloned him so he could ink and colour all his own stuff. :slight_smile:


Ah, here’s one:


Some of the stories about him in Marvel Comics: The Untold Story are so hilarious because of how outlandish they are.


I need to read more of that book. :slight_smile:


I highly recommend it. It’s a fun read.


That picture is gorgeous. Those aren’t by chance the designs that he would later adapted and use for the New Gods are they?


I think it was around the same time, and he ended up channeling some of the inspiration and ideas from that exercise into the New Gods, yes.

I’ll see if I can dig out my Kirby: King Of Comics book and take some shots of the others, there are several in there.


Here are some of the submissions to the Inkwell Challenge spotlight on Jim Lee this year:

(L-R: Wade von Grawbadger, Klaus Janson, Joe Sinnott and Victor Olazaba.)

Here’s what they were inking over:


Oh nice one. I saw Bill Sienkiewicz’s one on his FB page, looked like this:


…and for a great book full of side-by-side comparisons and lots of good inking tips, I recommend this one:


That Sienkiewicz one is tight! Looks great.


I saw those on eBay last night. Very cool.