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The Kaleidoscope King

March 28, 2018

Marlon Paul Bruin is a Photoshop mastermind, establishing himself firmly within the Photoshop community through online competitions. 


It was here, Photoshop-faceoff,  his nickname was formed, The Kaleidoscope King. One cannot help but marvel at his creations, taking in the details found in every layer, upon deeper inspection you'll discover more within every twist and turn. 

His work acknowledges the beauty and complexity architecture has to offer,


"It’s more about the complexity of buildings. The more complex, the more you can create." 


He has definitely taken the Kais Power Tools software to a whole new level, producing fine art images and nothing gets in his way, even when the programme was discontinued; Marlon saw this as an opportunity to take on Photoshop. This has lead to him creating images that begs for the viewers attention, and rightfully so, they are a joy to behold. 


Would you say Photoshop Faceoff and Photoshop Contests helped cement your online success?

I did for a great part actually. Since the beginning of these contests I quickly created my own style with these artsy mirrored images. Because I worked as a graphic designer in an agency, I wanted to explore my creativity. Instead of the more realistic way of Photoshopping, what I was doing already at work.

How often would you enter the competitions?

On a regular basis. I was a moderator at photoshopfaceoff ; I also designed the logo. Because of my mirrored kaleidoscopic style they started calling me kaleidoscope king after a while, ha ha. 


That’s how my name was born. I did that for years until the site stopped. After that I made a website with the best work and went on with my style.


That’s how I ended up on the Museum of Digital fine arts (MODFA), the Lumen Prize and some other sites.


Did the competitions act as a surrogate teacher, especially with members and public figures being able to comment?

Yes of course, other photoshoppers gave critiques and helpful tips on how to do certain things. We also became a close group and others tried my kind of work.


I’m now on Instagram as well and there are many people who make mirrored work; it feels like home.


What made you hang up your paint brush in order to pursue a career in digital art?

I think because of my work as a graphic designer, I was always busy on a MAC using Abobe software. That’s what I do best.


The original works I made with Rotring pens and painting with Ecoline cost me a lot of time. Most people start with digital and change to painting but I’m just the opposite ha ha.


Maybe because my dad  is an artist and painter, I just wanted to do something else. I’m just more into digital. Maybe in the future I'll try to paint as well.


When you look back at your paintings how would you describe their style?

My old work was abstract and Escher minded, just colourful parts and forms. I’m a fan of Mondriaan, Escher, Kandinsky, Leger etc. Look on my Pinterest page: https://nl.pinterest.com/kaleidoking/


Do you see any similarities between your paint work and digital work?

Maybe a little, but also my digital work changes now from mirrored kaleidoscopes to more surreal work.


How did you discover the Kaleidoscope graphic software?

There was a great software called Kais power tools, years ago. Unfortunately it’s not available anymore, so I had to find my way in Photoshop again, to make my kind of work. Often searching online for other filters and programs to help me.

How does the Kaleidoscope (pattern) make you feel? (for me, your work brings me back to my childhood, remembering what it was like to look through a kaleidoscope, all the colours and patterns, being wowed with every turn, its very nostalgic)

I simply don’t know, it just fascinates me, and everybody can see different things in it. My dad thinks I have a fascination for symmetry, mirroring and kaleidoscopes, because I have one lazy eye, so my two images don’t come together in my retina. I also can’t see 3D for that fact. Maybe that’s why I like mirrored images so much??? I don’t know, it could be.

How did you discover the world of architecture?

In 1989 I bought a book of Berlage, a famous dutch architect; after that I bought a lot of books on architecture.


A simple explanation is that pictures of buildings, cityscapes and machines are very useful in mirroring. You get the best results.


I can see how your love of architecture inspires and attributes to some of your kaleidoscope designs, do you often envision your own city when creating such designs?

No, not at all, I live in a little village on a Dutch island called Texel.


I just use cityscapes of big cities, and different buildings to what we have here.


It’s more about the complexity of buildings. The more complex, the more you can create.



What do you hope for the future of Kaleidoscope Kingdom?

I want to make more surreal work; not just mirrored. Surreal has just more fans. The mirrored pieces have just a select group of people who like it.


Do you have any exhibitions for 2018?

Just Mad Art Magazine now ha ha. Or maybe on MODFA Museum of digital fine arts, who knows. I’m just too busy lately with my graphic design company.


Most of my creativity goes in there at the moment. Hardly creating new digital art at the moment. Only on Instagram.


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