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Mike Sissons

man in a champion sweatshirt

Middle/Upper School Visual Arts Teacher

Mike is passionate about painting, sculpture, 3D & special effects, travel, and languages. Mike speaks Spanish sign language for the deaf, does volunteer work with refugees in Madrid, and his special talent as an artist is realistic portraiture. As well as teaching, Mike works as a professional artist, and his art has been sold to corporations across the world, as well as to private collections in several countries, including Greece, Thailand, Canada, the US, and Curacao. You can also find his work on the largest cruise ship in the world! Mike has written a book about a famous case his grandfather worked on as a Supreme Court judge in Canada.
"My grandfather was the first Supreme Court Judge of the Canadian Northwest Territories, working with the native Inuit population. One of his more famous cases involved an Inuk woman named Kikkik who was put on trial for killing her husband’s assassin, in self-defense, and then fleeing across the frozen tundra for 9 days in -40 degree weather, with her five children - leaving two of them behind in a small igloo, one of whom subsequently died. She was charged with murder and abandonment. I’ve written a book about the case."
What makes you proud?
- Successfully navigating two long-term teaching careers ( Physical Education and Art) along with a successful professional art career
- Learning multiple languages
- Proposing and implementing the Digital Arts program at ASM; introducing a range of technology-based classes
What kind of student were you?

I was a very good student - both in high school as well as in my post-secondary degree programs. I was awarded three different scholarships coming out of high school.
Tell us the story of what brought you to Madrid?
Most of my teaching career has been in international or American schools overseas: Egypt, Libya, Australia, Thailand, Tanzania, and Spain. I've also lived in Italy where I did my Master's in Fine Arts. I came to Madrid from Barcelona, where I was running a painting studio and studying 3D animation.
What do you want students to take away from your class?
The knowledge that they are seen as individuals, and matter.
Favorite ASM memories?
- Designing and creating the sets and costumes for Beauty and the Beast as well as the set for Aida
- Creating a 6-meter wide painting in my classroom as an illustration of how to incorporate our Visual Arts standards into a practical project.