Graphic designer Jonathan Castro is originally from Lima, Peru but currently resides in Amsterdam where he’s done stints at The Rodina and is now working as a graphic designer at Studio Dumbar in Rotterdam.
Fanzines, the alternative music culture of the late 90s and the visual saturation Jonathan experienced in Lima all led to him pursuing a career in design. “I was really young, dazed and confused but very curious. I had this strong connection with the aesthetics of the albums, shirts, posters and merchandising from the bands I liked but also bands I disliked,” says Jonathan. “At the same time I was growing unconsciously influenced by the colours and kitsch aesthetics of my culture.”
While Jonathan doesn’t believe he has a tangible style, he hopes to convey a language through his work. “I am really interested to take visual ideas and aesthetics from one context and put them in another and through process see how this new aesthetic lives in a new hybrid context.” His portfolio is full of varied projects including publications, exhibition identities, branding and printed collateral. “Projects related to research, experimental music and arts or where fields overlap is always fun and inspiring,” says Jonathan. Throughout his work there’s a strong sense of colour and vibrancy, with clashing hues and abstract patterns surrounding a mix of sans serif and ornate typefaces.
Process plays an important part in Jonathan’s work as it’s where all the research and exploration comes together. “It’s the environment where you are completely at the liberty of being who you want to be and how far you want to go,” he explains. Jonathan sees design as an “accumulation of energy in an object” and the act of “transferring it”. “I want my ideas and visual to find their support in whoever sees or experiences them,” he says.