Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Spotlight On: Joe Sinnott

Doug: Hey, back atcha with a look at one of our favorites around here -- none other than Joltin' Joe Sinnott! Joe's often tagged in our posts (he's in the top 15 here),
as we've covered many issues of the Fantastic Four that have featured his embellishments. Joe Sinnott is of course known as an inker, but did you know he did quite a bit of penciling back in the 1950's and early '60's? You can check out a chronology of Sinnott's career here. Around these parts we've featured Joe's inks over a hall-of-fame-worthy assortment of Bronze Age pencilers, including Jack Kirby, John Romita, John Buscema, Sal Buscema, George Perez, John Byrne, and Rich Buckler. You can find Sal Buscema's comments on Sinnott here.

Doug: But we'd be remiss if we didn't say that Sinnott does bring a bit of controversy to the table. As you can see in Sal's comments, many feel that when Sinnott's on the job, it's Sinnott you're going to get.
No, not the flavor of the pencils, but the overpowering of the inks. So as you head toward your comments today, why don't you take a minute first and stroll through our Joe Sinnott tags, checking out his work over various other creators. Are there certain characters he enhances? Are there artists he makes, and others he breaks? Is he best on the FF, or can he make any character or book better? Thanks as always for the input!


dbutler16 said...

I only know Joe Sinnott as an inker, but I have to say, that pencilling of the cowboy you've shown is beautiful!

Rip Jagger said...

I agree with the opinion that while Sinnott was gangbusters on Kirby, he was not nearly as effective on either of the Buscema brothers, especially Big John. The Buscema's have an edge to their artwork, a crispness that Sinnott's powerful inking lines obliterates. Some of Big John's power disappears when Sinnott inked him. Sinnott was recognizable and reliable and on some pencilers superb, but on Buscema he leaves me cold. The best job on Big John he did in my opinion is on Silver Surfer #1.

Rip Off

david_b said...

I won't have anything profound or philosophical to add this morning, (yes, I know, when do I ever..??), but I still hold Joe as the unsung hero in painting the overall picture of my Silver and Bronze 'Marvel Universe'.

By inking SO many issues by so many pencillers, his inking wove a coherent image of the world I fantasized about in my youth. While I loved his work on Avengers and other mags, it was his work with Jack Kirby and John Buscema that will always be engrained. He did take the edge off of John in FF, but I liked it immensely (comparing it to his Avengers stint with Stern, which I thought was a bit 'over-done'..).

To digress.., I just remember this LONG, hot cross-country summer trip my parents took me on in 1973 through Arizona and Texas, giving me 20 cents at one point to buy FF 138 at this gas station. Boy, I absorbed every panel of that issue, and while I had gotten a couple of comics a few years back ('68), this one marked my official entry into the Universe. Loved how they could draw Reed and Ben as deep-thinking, brooding, majestic heroes effectively wearing blue spandex.

J.A. Morris said...

It's funny, when I was about 13, I tried to collect every issue drawn by John Byrne. This was around 1984 &'85, when he was writing & drawing the FF.

So I went back and got some issues from Byrne's first go-round on the title, 209-218 at a convention. I got some Byrne-drawn issues of 'Marvel Two-On-One' that day as well.
When I opened them up, I was disappointed. It didn't "look like" Byrne's art to me. That's because it was inked by Sinnott.

Within a few months though, I grew to love the look of the art from those issues. It's such a wonderful mix of the Old School and (then) New School of Marvel art(same goes for his inking of Perez). And the combination of the two screams "Bronze Age Of Comcis!"

In time I learned that Sinnott had as much to do with the best Kirby FF art as Kirby himself did. The art on that title before Sinnott looks very dated(Chic Stone,Dick Ayers,etc).

Doug said...

J.A. --

You've brought up a post idea for the future! John Byrne: Under His Own Influence... or Not?

What a moment of inspiration!



Edo Bosnar said...

Add me to the ranks of those who love Sinnott's inks no matter what. Like david_b said, Sinnott did much to define Marvel's 'look' in the Bronze Age (together with Sal Buscema's pencils). I can't think of any book with Sinnott's inks that did not look nice - including his inks over Byrne's pencils in that run of FF mentioned by J.A. In fact, my copy of "In Search of Galactus" - featuring a bunch of those issues - just arrived in the mail a few weeks ago. I'm so looking forward to (re)reading those stories.

Dandy Forsdyke said...

Nothing to add really, just that I was a big Joe Sinnott fan too. You could always rely on every issue of the Fantastic Four being consistantly good, no matter who the penciller, as long as JS was on the book. He gave the FF a signature look and a special sheen.

His DC counterpart was Murphy Anderson and I was thrilled when I saw a photograph of them together on his website.

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