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The Work That Made Me: William Child

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From Snoop Dogg to Alan Partridge, Ground Work director, designer and claymation master on the work that has shaped his career

The Work That Made Me: William Child

Designer, director and claymation master, William Child, has been making videos for some of hip-hop’s premier talents since 2017. Based in Bristol, and a self-declared hip-hop nerd, Child has his own animation studio and record label, Gravy Mercedes.

His first claymation video was an eight-second clip of Donald Trump vomiting the word ‘BIGLY’, which landed him his first job - a video for the artist Da$h. From then on, Child has continued to work on various music video projects for the likes of Young Thug, Drake, PARTYNEXTDOOR, Kenny Beats, 03 Greedo, Trippie Redd, Father, and KEY!, amongst others.

The ad/music video from my childhood that stays with me…

From my childhood, music video would probably be Beautiful by Snoop and Pharrell, and the adverts I loved most would definitely be the John Smiths ones with Peter Kay. I though that was the funniest shit ever at the time.

The ad/music video/game/web platform that made me want to get into the industry…

GTA Vice City was a massive influence for me as a kid looking back on it, and was the first time I thought about the possibility of creating my own ‘worlds’.

The creative work that I keep revisiting…

I’m a bugger for watching/listening to the same stuff over and over but the main ones would have to be Scarface, Peep Show and Alan Partridge.

My first professional project…

First time I went freelance out of university in 2012 I did a music video for Meyhem Lauren, Action Bronson, AG Da Coroner and Harry Fraud ‘Drug Lords’. It was made using papier mache puppets and shot by Declan Creffield. I’m still quite proud of that video now!

The piece of work that made me so angry that I vowed to never make anything like *that*…

I can’t really think of anything that really triggered that reaction in me to be honest, if it’s crap I just turn it off. I defo wouldn’t consider making anything like it! Saying that, Eastenders, Rugby Union, Made in Chelsea etc etc, American Pie (any of them) and anything set in medieval times all really piss me off for some reason and get switched off HARD.

The piece of work that still makes me jealous…

I think I’d say the music video for Can’t Play No Game That I Can’t Win by Beastie Boys and Santigold. I love that video so much.

The creative project that changed my career…

In terms of my own work? I’d probably say The Grinch video I did for Trippie Redd, or the Loyal video I did for PartyNextDoor & Drake. They both came around the same time, were amazing projects to be trusted with, and were great for raising my profile a bit. Those two videos were so much fun to make.

The work that I’m proudest of…

It could be one of those two videos, but I’d also say the commercials I made for Old Spice last year. It was my first big commercial job and I was really proud of how it all came out, everyone seemed chuffed with it and the campaign did really well online.

I was involved in this and it makes me cringe…

Not really had one of these yet, but it will come. Oh it will come.

The recent project I was involved in that excited me the most…

I’m lucky to only really work on projects that I’m into and am just out of the back of an ace video with Kurupt FM, it was a big goal of mine to work with them in some capacity. My other favourites this year so far are probably the Benny Blanco, Marshmello and Vance Joy video, and the commercial I did for Huf - two super light hearted, silly and fun visuals to make.

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Ground Work, Tue, 21 Sep 2021 15:13:24 GMT