Hundreds of thousands of people were enthralled by the motion graphics masterpiece that was ‘Made in Hull’. As lights, sound and video electrified the city and drew praise from far-afield, people were effected in truly profound ways. The incredible displays that graced the Maritime Museum and Ferens Art gallery, the Deep and Whitefriargate spoke to Hull, for Hull and about Hull.
One of these displays was The Heart of Rugby. A motion graphics piece, animated by Alex Twiston Davies and directed by Bafta-winning and Oscar-nominated, Chris Hees. The piece invited viewers to feel the burning passion of the game of Rugby and in particular that of the die-hard supporters of Hull KR and Hull FC.
I caught up with Alex Twiston Davies, the 29 year old animator who is originally from Northampton but is now firmly based in Hull, to hear about his work and to hear his thoughts on Hull 2017. As a student Alex studied film making in Hull, which led him to create commercial films and animations, first for local companies and now nationally. The talented animator and film maker is now based in Humber Film’s communal office space on Alfred Gelder street, where many of the city’s best film makers form a kind of ‘Creative Collective’.
The Heart of Rugy Piece was always going to be a challenge. Creating a piece of work that not only celebrates an important part of Hull’s make up, but also celebrates two fierce and passionate rivals. People who love rugby, LOVE rugby, so this was never going to be an easy task.
“The rugby teams have each been tied to the fortunes of the city for over 100 years, and have grown, moved and transformed as the city has over the decades. A main element of the piece is the heart (designed like an old rugby ball) that beats throughout, to show the love of the teams never fading throughout their history.”
The overwhelming feedback from fans on both the red and white side and the black and white side has been hugely positive. Both sets of fans play an important role in Hull’s story and both sides are made all the richer by the historic rivalry.
So, what exactly is it about Hull that makes Alex and other film makers want to live and work here?
“This city is such a mixed bag of old and new, with incredible architecture and interesting public spaces that feel connected to the city’s history of design. These are set alongside the functional, industrial structures that keep you grounded in the fact that this is a city built on sweat and hard work. How could you not be inspired by that?”
Check out more of Alex Twiston Davies’ work on: vimeo.com/alextwistondavies