Robot 6

Michael J. Austin: the artist formerly known as Mick

Mick Austin's cover for Warrior #7

Scotch Corner is the sketch blog of a group of Scottish comic artists that includes regular Garth Ennis/Warren Ellis collaborator Gary Erskine and 2000AD staple Simon Fraser.  To celebrate their blog’s birthday, and to take a break from their regular schedule, every July they feature a series of guest bloggers who’ve included quite a star-spangled list over the last couple of years.  On Saturday their had quite a coup – their guest contributor was the painter Michael J. Austin, known to comic fans of a certain age as Eagle-award winning Warrior, Doctor Who Monthly and 2000AD contributor Mick Austin.

While many comic book artists have moved on to successful careers in other media (such as Troy Nixey becoming a film director, or the countless hordes lost to storyboarding and concept illustration, or Chris Cunningham making music videos, right through to Jamie Hewlett becoming a bona fide pop star), Austin is one of the few who’ve made the leap to the fine art world.  The last time I heard Austin’s name was on press coverage of Prince Charles’ visit to India and Oman in 2002, when he was invited along as the official tour artist.  Austin clearly still has a clear admiration for the craft of comics, though shows no inclination to return to the form (though when you’re keeping such vaunted company, why would you?).

Mick Austin's cover for Warrior #15

Mick Austin's cover for Eclipse's Alien Encounters #3

An example of Michael J Austin's current work

Austin in the studio 2011

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I am unsure whether this comment/message gtes through to Mick Austin himself or filtered through admin staff but here goes… I knew you Mick in North Devon, 1988/9 when you rented a studio in Barnstaple. We had a couple of meetings..Do you remember? Anyay, I was very young and immature and had some very stupid views at the time… I would just like to offer my apologies and wish you well. Mia : )

Thanks Mia! That long ago it’s all a bit blurred – there was a lot of beer flying around. Lots of my mates in Barnstaple had some wierd views – most of them still do! Best regards, MIke.

Hello Mike,

just stumbled across this page. we knew each other whilst you had the gallery in Exeter. I was talking with Tom about you the other day.

We’ve almost acomplished the dream and have managed to finally shoot a feature film, like we always dreamed about. http://www.shieldsofjustice.com/

Just wanted to say, I hope you and your wife are well and that your fantastic artwork is continuing to be appreciated worldwide.

All the best,

Ben x

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