The Gallery at Graphic-Design.com presents:


Ciro Marchetti

Contenplating the System by Ciro Marchetti

Ciro Marchetti is a British graphic designer who's professional career after graduating from Croydon College of Art, England, in the mid seventies, has included working in Europe, South America and the US.
____ Since 1992 he's been based in Miami FL as president of Graform International, a design group with affiliate offices in Caracas and London.
This role requires a direct involvement in a variety of projects and services that include packaging, corporate identity, print and multimedia for a number of domestic and international clients.

Contenplating
the System

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Detail Plates:
#1: The Machine
#2: Scenery
#3: The Joker
#4: System (Layered Photoshop File)

____ While in South America, he gave seminars on brand imagery and print production to the marketing departments of various corporations including American Express, 3M and Nabisco International. He was also a part time faculty member of the National Design Institute in Caracas Venezuela where he taught graphics. This interest in teaching has continued to the present time, where he is currently a part time instructor at the Fort Lauderdale Art Institute, giving classes in digital imagery.
____ As a counterpoint to the everyday challenges of his company's corporate work, Ciro Marchetti has always been a keen illustrator, and over the last couple of years has started to apply his experience with digital media to produce a number of illustrations. While produced mainly for personal satisfaction, his work has nevertheless enjoyed a degree of recognition recently, having appeared in a number of publications (both print and on-line).

* Winner
___ Macworld Expo Digital Art Competitions, 2000
* Grand Prize Winner
___ Macworld Expo Digital Art Competitions, 2001
*"2001 Photoshop Guru" in the Artistic Category
___ National Association of Photoshop Professionals
* "2001 Photoshop Guru" Best of Show
___ National Association of Photoshop Professionals

Ciro Marchetti talks about 'digital art'

The current content and style of recent illustrations directly reflects my sources of interest and inspiration. From my student days when I first came across the delicate pen and ink work of Arthur Rackham, to the discovery in more recent years of the beautiful characters of James Christenson, and surrealistic dream images of Michael Parkes. These combined with a personal collection of old mechanical instruments and artifacts such as compasses, theodolites, sextants and kaleidoscopes.
___ In the category of "digital art" there is a considerable amount of experimentation and techniques. The capacity of today's hardware and software lends itself to this approach, and some truly interesting imagery is coming out of it. Nevertheless I'm concerned there's too much of a tendency toward the manipulation of scanned or digital camera imagery via multiple applications of packaged special effect filters to achieve "artistic" results. This is obviously a very subjective and personal opinion so I won't take the topic any further, other than to say that the technique I decide to use in my work, while very much using the capacity of this digital medium, isn't subject to it. I still control the pencil or brush so to speak, even if itís a virtual one. Having said that however..."what a pencil, and what a brush" the increase in creative options this digital medium provides is in itself inspiring.
___ I've used Adobe Photoshop in my corporate work for a number of years, so I'm comfortable enough that itís my software of choice, and allows me to pretty much reproduce most ideas and effects I wish. While I have a pretty clear idea of my illustrations from the onset, I nevertheless use the capacity of layers, and color modes constantly, making adjustments to composition, color and light. This very often results in a different arrangement and mood to the one I originally planned. Another important feature is texture; I very deliberately break up the computer clean surfaces of the images by painting through a selection of custom prepared textured alpha channels. This adds a controllable tactile surface quality to the imagery where appropriate; i.e. rusted metal, rough stone.

The assorted mechanical elements, wheels cogs, springs etc are created in a separate multilayered file, a virtual spare parts shop so to speak. When I "assemble" these machine parts I'm aiming to build a visually interesting combination of shape and form along with a degree of mechanical credibility. These combinations are transformed within my illustrations into exotic machines, capable of function beyond the current capacity of today's real world science. Unfortunately in some cases such as "Evening Commute" the physics and engineering involved is still subject to certain limitations. While they're capable of flight, the machines still require fuel, and gas tanks. Fortunately itís unleaded.
___ My original file is 22 X 16 inches at 300 dpi. I'm not sure but I believe this was reduced for the print that was actually used at the Macworld Digital Art Show. That print was output as an giclee on watercolor. Although to be honest depite the reputation of the Iris Giclee, I was a little dissapointed. The matt surface quality of the watercolor does'nt reproduce the vibrancy of the originals. I'm not just talking about the obvious RGB to CMYK sacrifice, simply that I have achieved (using a simple in house Epson 2000p and archival inks) a richer color range on coated stock.

To complete the work: approximately 40-50 hours

Detail Plates:

#1: The Machine
#2: Scenery: note how beautifully the backgrounds are painted, not only contributing to the atmosphere of the overall piece, but lovely visuals in their own right.
#3: "The Joker" detail shows the careful marriage of "not-quite" realism which conveys the story-book feeling of the piece.
#4: System (Layered Photoshop File)


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