Presenting October’s student of the month – Charlie Behrens. Charlie is in his second year of an FdA Design for Graphic Communication course at the London College of Communication, and he submitted a brilliant process-driven project that explores analogue glitching of various moribund technologies as new, image-making devices for print. From a project set by Ditto Press – to create a test print that would showcase the colour capabilities of their risograph machine – Charlie made it his own, removing any predictability in favour of genuine excitement and originality in experimentation.
Originally working with a VHS player, an early version of the project Bark if you can read me involved a multitude of back and forths between a digital necessity for bitmapping and the frozen shots of a telly screen (with some pretty wild and flashing lights results). Taking an unusual turn, as most projects do, Charlie got his hands on some shrinkart paper (a fascinating and mutable medium that warps and shrinks when heated) and, working with some earlier found imagery, documented and multiplied them on top of each other – the result being a simultaneous illustration of a complete process and very nice indeed.
At the time of making/creating this project, who or what was your biggest influence?
It was a combination of David Cronenberg’s Videodrome, Andrzej Zulawski’s Posession, The Effect of Duplication on Frozen Water Patterns, an older book of test prints published by Ditto, and the guidance of Ben Freeman (of Ditto Press).
What is the most valuable thing you have learnt at university to date?
To think way outside of the discipline I am training in and to know when it’s time to move on to the next idea.
What would you be doing now if you weren’t at art school?
I would probably still be a bar manager with a sideline in DJ-ing. Although if I had to suddenly leave now, I would try to get a job in the industry.
Where are you making/creating most of your work?
Often at home, although I use the printmaking and letterpress facilities at uni.
What are you working on at the moment?
I’m working on some book covers for the excellent writer Charlie Weaver Rolfe, a film edited from found super 8 footage which I’m finding new ways to splice, and a printed booklet of the bizarre, among other things.
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