Elayne Riggs' Journal (for Leah)

Thursday, August 28, 2003

Out of the Inkwell

The recent news regarding a comics publisher owing money to a number of freelancers (Update: More here and here and here) has not only resulted in a lot of folks coming here in search of my entry which helped "break" the story, but in many curious and interested fans and pros who had no idea a mailing list for inkers even existed, and who enthusiastically signed onto the Yahoo Inkers group. Aside from a temporarily annoying troll the discussions were expanding nicely - until we realized the group's moderator and owner was nowhere to be found, and there were a whole bunch of files that needed cleaning out (many from inactive members) which only a moderator has the power to do en masse. As you can imagine, on a graphic-intensive list like this one, where many pros and aspiring pros put up their work for critique, this is not an optimal situation. So Chuck Gibson took it upon himself, with agreement from all concerned, to create a new Yahoo group called The Inkwell, with himself as moderator/owner and (in one of those moves that made me go "duh, why didn't anyone think of doing this before?") an agreed-upon backup co-mod also installed to help with file maintenance and such. The new group has picked up right where the old one left off, the only bump so far being that Yahoo bandwidth limits sometimes prevent folks from immediately viewing all the new files being uploaded. One of the best ideas generated these past few days has been in the Database section (I'm on half a dozen Yahoo groups and I never noticed the Database sections!), where a few members have gathered a listing of editors and assistant eds at the major comic book companies for use in preparing portfolios, keeping up to date on who's where, etc. A great resource, as is the list itself. For a process wonk like me who was interested in how comics were created long before I married an artist, the list is both educational and tons of fun, although I should probably include fair warning that inkers are (among) the kwaziest people and discussions can turn bawdy or scatological with little prompting.