The first project was a self portrait poster using a photo from a photo booth and adding the letters of our initials from a non-digital source. We were also restricted to using only a photocopier to manipulate the image. I wasn’t thrilled at the prospect of producing a work with my face on it, but that lead to my concept of identity – how do others perceive you? What do you assume about others? I began the project influenced by the deconstruction of punk culture from the late 1970’s and 1980’s. I wanted to experiment with tearing the paper, the image and my face. I was also researching Russian and Polish posters and started to experiment with the typography based on those styles.
After many experiments with the photocopier, blurring the image by moving it across the photocopier and ripping the paper, I ended up with a large image of my eye. I decided to blow it up on the photocopier, as large as I could get it. The image started pixelating and fragmenting which perfectly captured my concept of breaking down perceptions of identity. I then decided to put the image behind sheets of torn paper rather than tearing the image itself. Adding layers of paper over the image further represented the complexities of identity.
I decided to use found objects for the type. Fortunately my initials ‘RK’ are in ‘New York’, so there was an abundance of found material to work with. I ended up photocoping the letters of my initials from a photograph that I took of a park bench with ‘New York’ carved in it. I then shrank the type to different sizes around 6-10 points, cut up the letters and scattered them at the top and bottom of the image. The letters were then camouflaged by the pixels in the image. I felt that this was the most fitting solution for the type.
Being forced to use non-digital methods was a challenge but a lot of fun. After hours of frustration with photocopiers and paper cuts, I felt that I managed to convey my concept successfully.
Click here to see images of the work (password: processandskills)