PRO PORTRAIT: Steven Sites Explores the Darker Side of Art.

Steven Sites attributes his artistic style, and his interest in dark subject matter, to the video game Resident Evil. His older brothers hooked him on the game, which became an obsession, which became a focus of his art. His inspiration comes from horror movie soundtracks, the films themselves, video games, “pretty much anywhere that I can see something larger than life actually coming to life,” he says. “Most of my art now is more spur of the moment and straightforward with brighter colors and themes, but when I get an opportunity to sit down and think something out, I almost always naturally aim for dark or unsettling.” 

His interest in photography started in high school—in the darkroom, skipping classes to develop film whenever he could. He tried art school, but it wasn’t for him. “Everything I ever really learned about art was through my own personal experimentation and experience. Art school is right for some people, but I am the artist I am today because I disregarded everything I learned in school and took my own path.”

Steven likes to leave people feeling uncomfortable with his art—making people wonder what happened next after the photo was taken, or getting chills. “So many emotions can be evoked through art and I think the unpleasant ones are often neglected. My artistic obsession is trying to find ways to weird people out, to make people question what is ‘normal.’ My obsession is creating dark images that make people see that there is beauty in the macabre, that you can see an image of a decaying animal or building and understand that there is something to be seen, that you can feel a little uncomfortable or disturbed and that that's okay.”

Steven doesn’t see others in the art scene who see things the way he does; “…horror and darkness are two enormous fields that very few people venture into.” But he hopes others will discover the darker side of art, and venture out with him.

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