We had the good fortune of connecting with Austin Ackert and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Austin, what’s the most important thing you’ve done for your children?
My family always supported my artistic interests and encouraged me to chase after my dreams. I try to do the same for my kids. They see me at my desk drawing all the time and I hope it shows them that if you really want something you have to put in the time and work to get it. Manifest your dreams.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I consider myself to be a Cartoonist/Illustrator. My main point of focus is Comic Books. I’m trying to get my name/work out and get my art into more books, which is hard especially with the sea of amazing talent out in the world. At the moment I am almost finished with my first Graphic Novel. It is written, penciled, inked and lettered by me. I work traditionally, so my hand physically touches every page. It’s hard work, especially hand lettering and working out all the proportions and perspectives with old fashioned rulers and lettering guides, but it is also such a rewarding and satisfying experience. I also work freelance and have done many hand drawn and colored tattoo designs and logo pieces as well as album covers and flyers for local bands. I’ve been told I have a unique style and I think that’s one of the best compliments you can get as an artist. I’m hoping that publishing my Graphic Novel will help open some doors for me in the Comic Industry. I also plan to set up an Etsy shop in the near future and maybe even start a Patreon. Once Comic Cons kick back into full gear, I also plan to hit those circuits as well.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
One of my favorite places to eat is definitely Wings Express on Alma School in Mesa. Toms BBQ is also a must! I’m a comic book guy so we would definitely have to hit the shops I frequent. There’s Gotham City Comics and Collectibles off of Main Street in Mesa, and Ash Ave Comics has a great selection of cool indie and self published comics and zines. My favorite place, though, is Monster comics in Tempe. The guys that work there are super cool and there’s always other artists that hang out there and the place just has a great vibe to it. We would also have to hit the river and maybe fish a little out at Phon D Sutton or go tubing. Bookmans on Country Club and Southern in Mesa is another place that is great to just chill and geek out on all the amazing things they have from instruments to records, books and toys, and especially comics!

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My Grandmother for sure. She was Mesas Woman of the Year in 2010 and has always supported me in my artistic ventures. As a kid, during summer breaks from school, she would pay for me to go to all sorts of different art classes. Her and my Grandpa would get me fundamental “how-to” books for christmases and birthdays. She also considered it important to take me to the Grady Gammage in Tempe to see amazing Broadway Musicals and the Phoenix Art Museum to see pieces by great masters like Monet and Dali. All of my family have always been super supportive of my artistic development, but I definitely owe a special thanks so my Grandma.

Instagram: @austinackertart

Twitter: @austinackertart

Facebook: The Art of Austin Ackert

Other: austinackertart@gmail.com

Image Credits
Robin Espinel

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