Today we’d like to introduce you to Romy Suskin.
Every artist has a unique story. Can you briefly walk us through yours?
I have always photographed people. My mother was a portrait artist, and my father was a photographer, so growing up, I was immersed in the study of faces and the lines of the body.
When I moved to San Francisco from Michigan, I started shooting street stories focused on the gender identity movement there. That led to some of my images being in a book, and that pushed me forward to grad school and then to LA where I photographed musicians, shot catalogs and look books for young fashion brands and lots of portraits for magazines, artists and friends around me.
I moved to Texas in 2010 and opened a studio in Austin, where I shoot mostly fashion, portraiture, and branding work.
Please tell us about your art.
To me, portraits are stories. Our faces, our body language, the way we carry and dress ourselves, these are the stories that transcend our day to day lives.
In school, I took anthropology, religious studies, acting, and dance. These interests kept drawing my attention back to the map of human emotions and how we let (or don’t let) who we are shimmer to the surface. The human body is a map of so many things. I see beauty in everyone. People think I only photograph models, but often they are looking at someone just like them that I just see as iconic.
It amazes me how a project can still sweep me up with excitement when the image turns out even better than I imagined. It’s always a collaboration with the subject, my team, and the elements. Even when everything is planned carefully, there is always a moment of magic, simply the breeze catching someone’s hair at the right moment can change everything. It’s a cool job. Not gonna lie.
As an artist, how do you define success and what quality or characteristic do you feel is essential to success as an artist?
I used to think success meant a certain publication or type of shoot. The list of people who might want to work with me or the amount of money I made in a year, being booked out for more than six months, these kinds of things. Those are still worthy markers of a career moving forward for sure. But now I’m much more focused on making sure that day to day I’m enjoying what I’m doing. Being really aligned with one’s true intention is so important, especially as an artist or working with people in what can often be an emotional space. Even if it’s fun, being authentic matters.
I make portraits primarily, so I need to be pretty grounded in myself to hold space for the person or people I’m working with. If I’m relaxed and present, it allows us to move through nerves, worries, or the tendency to rely on well-rehearsed poses quickly and find an image that says something new about that person. Hopefully, my clients are interested in representing who they really are, revealing something new about themselves.
My measure of success is now the image, one shoot at a time.
The characteristic I think is most important in success, if by that we mean contentment or pride in one’s work, is fortitude. Craft a vision of where you want to go, leave room for inspiration and surprise along the way and keep going. Smile along the way and be grateful for all of it.
How or where can people see your work? How can people support your work?
- Address: 2617 S. first st
austin TX 78704
- Website: www.romysuskin.com
- Phone: 323.481.3223
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Instagram: @romysuskinphotography
- Facebook: romy suskin photography
- Twitter: romywashere
© Romy Suskin