I love the beauty of mistakes.
As digital imaging technologies continue to push for higher resolutions and less noise, it becomes trivial to create increasingly clean, authentic representations of the world... and I can't help but want to introduce errors and noise.
I remember the first time I saw a JPEG that failed to download properly. It ended up with a lower half that consisted of yellow blocks and horizontal lines with only hints of the original image peeking through. That was on an Amiga, at the end of the 90's, and there was something very enticing about it.
What's going on with this image? What happens if I manually edit JPEG data... could I recreate the effect?
It was a window into the heart of image compression that started me down a path of experimentation with image processing, glitches, and abstract art. Since then, I've enjoyed working on processes that take unassuming sources and transform them into something quite different through a series of operations that distort, degrade, and rearrange.
Years ago, I was looking at the inner workings of a JPEG encoder as a learning and optimisation exercise, and realised the creative potential in making changes to various stages of the encoding process. Today I continue to build on those ideas, making and using tools (including a modified JPEG encoder) to help create original images that are - to me at least - quite aesthetically pleasing.
I'm pretty happy with the processes and images I'm making, so have started collecting some of my favourite Abstract Glitches, and preparing them for print. The images on this page are examples of those first selections.
I wasn't too sure if printing would work all that well for subjects like this with high contrast, pixellation, and sharp edges, but I'm really pleased how they translate to a printed medium. Outputting them to paper at 360 DPI means edges are pin-sharp, and I'm impressed by the vibrancy of the colours and deepness of the blacks achieved by the giclée process.
The prints are made to order and can be purchased on my Etsy shop - Quieter. Each is signed and numbered on the rear, and comes with a certificate of authenticity. A 1-inch unprinted border is included for mounting and framing.
Along with Abstract Glitches, I have also been continuing to work on the Pareidolia series, and have a couple of them ready for sale along with the other prints here.
Self Portrait (preview)
Finally, a preview of a larger and more personal collection that I'm working on.
An extensive series of self-portraits that explores/breaks my own reluctance to be captured on camera is not something I thought I'd do, but I am enjoying the process of mangling my pixels, and have tentative plans to put on an exhibition of the complete collection next year.