Though he may have many artistry names, Charles Ramon Garcia usually signs all his work with the letter “C” with the number “1” through it. Also known as DJ Chuck 1, he graciously sat down and answered some questions of mine so that I could share with you.
When asked why C1, he answered that he takes it from his DJ name DJ Chuck 1. Because he wanted people to be on a first name basis with him when they meet him and the one comes from when he used to tag. Apparently, they would write a one after their names if they were the first person to start writing a particular name. C1, is really an abbreviation of “Chuck 1.” For now, anyway.
TC: How did you get your start?
C1: I’ve been drawing since I can remember. Back in the day I used to draw my classmates break dancing. Later Transformers, GI Joe, Monsters, Voltron. Then when I started tagging my style changed up to a graffiti style.When I stopped writing I got back into drawing anime type stuff. Then, after I picked up the book “scrawl,” my first experience of street art that was the catalyst that got me to where I am in my artwork now.
TC: What is your most memorable moment?
C1: Most likely the Artifice show that was held by AI. It was an amazing feeling to do a piece from the writings of someone from Juxtapoz magazine. Juxtapoz has been my favorite magazine since discovering street art. What was also cool was that her boyfriend bought her the painting for her birthday. It was really amazing.
TC: How does your art affect you and vice versa?
C1: My art sometimes gets me frustrated. When I do the abstract part of my paintings I feel free and relaxed and have fun. When I get into the detailed parts, it can be a bit of a chore to make sure everything comes out right. Kind of a love-hate relationship. However, once things have all been put together I’m usually happy with the results. I can be my own worst critic quite frequently.
I hope when people see my work; they see professionalism. I do everything I can to make my work look like something the guys in the big league or street art are doing. Not in style, but when you see it, you’re shocked that I did it. After that, I hope people get a special experience from my work. Something that makes them say, “Wow!”
I typically want people to form their own opinions of what it is I’m trying to say in my work. I feel if I state what it is, then it takes away from the imaginative process during the individuals experience.
TC: How would you define what you do?
C1: A fusion of abstract and realistic artwork, with a twist of both anime and hip-hop. HA!! With dots.
TC: As an artist, how do you feel about how others respond to your work?
C1: I’ll admit; I’ve always been blessed to have people around me that were/are always surprised and amazed by what I create. So far, it’s been a really good feeling.
TC: What is your motto? Or something you live your life in accordance to?
C1: In regards to art, to create something that I would buy. I guess, the thing that really got me started to paint so much, was that one time I wanted to buy a painting by one of my favorite street artists. “Then I saw the price.” Then I thought, why pay for something I can create myself. Don’t get me wrong; once I’ve got the funds, I’d still buy one though. HA!!
So my motto is to make good artwork. So that when you see it, you are left in amazement. I don’t know if I always get that effect, but that is what I try to accomplish.
TC: How do you find work? Or, how does it find you?
C1: Anyway I can! HA!! It varies. Sometimes people see my artwork on my Facebook. Other times, people know me and see my stuff live and want to buy or commission. Sometimes both, but honestly, not enough. It’d be great to make a living off of DJ-ing and artwork alone. That would be a great feeling.
TC: What do you do in your spare time? Do you have a hobby?
C1: All my hobbies usually find there way into making some form of profit. HA! DJ-ing used to be a hobby, now I get paid to do it. Same with artwork. I guess, as a hobby aspect, I’ll make a mix of music that I like. Not the typical stuff I have to play on radio or at parties. It allows me to be creative. Like my artwork. A lot of the time, the music I DJ reflects the artwork I make and vice versa.
Artwork is the same, only I’m less worried as to whether or not it looks like a specific individual or not.
TC: What is your dream job like?
C1: To do both, make a living selling artwork and DJ-ing in clubs and radio, and not struggling.
TC: What is your dream girl like?
C1: HA!! My dream girl huh? Hmmm… Jessica Rabbit maybe. HA!! Nah. To be honest, probably someone down to earth. She just has to be cool. Some form of ethnicity, I’m a huge fan of ethnicity. And of course, hopefully, she can appreciate and respect the things I enjoy doing in regards to my art. It would be cool if she did artwork as well, but to be honest, just appreciating it is enough for me. I’m not real picky.
TC: How would you define family life?
C1: Well, I happen to have to girls from a previous relationship. The most I can say is do everything you can for your kids and loved ones to let them know you love them.
TC: Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
C1: Successful, humble, creative, and happy… hopefully. HAHA!
TC: What do you have coming up?
C1: I’ve got 3 projects right now. I’m working on a huge painting for Remedy. One of my fellow classmates, think everyone at AI knows her, or at least they should…HA! Another one for a friend who paid me in advance to get hers done as well. And a project for my brother. I’ve also been working on a little animation project of my own with some of my sketches incorporated with real life backgrounds in After Effects. Oh yeah, and I’m trying to get a show in the gallery across the street from AI.
TC: Personal message?
C1: I’ll get back to ya.
With wide eyes and a heart of hopefulness, DJ Chuck 1 continues to make his mark in the DJ and art scene. To see more of his work, check out The Core Live to see him mix live or connect with him on Facebook!