Michael Sussna has been designing for over 30 years with experience in geometric design. His creative use of shapes and specialty techniques in photoshop create one of kind artwork with a modern twist. Below is our exclusive interview with Michael and how he got started as an artist.
Kess InHouse : Tell us a little bit about yourself. How did you get your start as an artist?
Michael Sussna : I began creating art on a computer in 1985. I had read a fascinating article in Scientific American about fractals. The article not only explained them and showed images that people were starting to create with them, but it also gave the recipe for doing it yourself.
Being a computer programmer by profession, and having gotten my first personal computer the year before, I decided to try my hand. My resources were very primitive: I only had 16 colors to work with and it took hours to create the simplest image. But it was a beginning.
KIH : What is your first memory as an artist?
MS : Unlike most artists, I’ve never been drawn to drawing or painting. But as a child I did sketch unusual pictures of bodies like snowmen, composed of circles. I put a simple face inside each circle, composed of smaller circles for the eyes, nose, and mouth. I then put even smaller faces inside each of those small circles.
It wasn’t until decades later that I realized that I had been creating fractals!
KIH : What is your creative process?
MS : Although there are periods when I try creating images from scratch, I’m usually reworking one of my existing images. I may try altering the coloring or the structure or both. I may even drastically change the forms, in effect creating a new image to work with.
My images are like painted sculpture. I generally come up with the forms first, then when I have something i like enough to take further, I work on decorating the forms with color and texture.
Again unlike most artists, I do not envision a scene and then work to depict it. I just explore what my tools offer me. That being said, I sometimes think of a specific special effect that I’d like to try on an image, or a type of look that I’d like to see.
KIH : What is your favorite part of the creative process?
MS : I love arriving at an end result that I really like. But the journey is also rewarding. I enjoy using tools or techniques successfully, and also deriving new techniques.
KIH : What common threads do you find show up in your artwork?
MS : I summarize my very diverse results as “geometric yet organic.”
KIH : Why did you become an artist?
MS : I’ve always loved art. I never studied it nor was inclined to participate in the usual ways. When I saw the chance to create my own via fractals, I never looked back.
KIH : How did your relationship with Kess Inhouse begin?
MS : Sara saw me at an art festival and asked if I’d like to collaborate.
KIH : What is your work space like?
MS : My work space is a computer. I usually have favorite music playing.
KIH : What artists inspire you to create your artwork?
MS : I like many genres and artists too numerous to mention. Here is a list of genres:
science fiction illustration
Persian architecture, art and decoration
Chinese and Japanese art
KIH : Would you recommend Kess Inhouse to other artists?
MS : Yes.
Did you find Michael Sussna super talented? Did you have anymore questions for him? Please comment below to ask anymore questions about Michael
If you are also interested in being a Kess artist please feel free to apply on our website.