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City’s living room of words comes to life in short film on library

Nov 15th, 2012 | By | Category: Latest News, News

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WHEN a well-meaning member of the public saw a young man scaling the walls of Palmerston North City Library, his first thought was of an intruder.

Staff, however, knew it was just Tim Hamilton (19), a local film-maker they had affectionately nick-named the Library Hobo.

Mr Hamilton spent over a week straight in the library earlier this year, shooting a short film that promotes the library to the public.

The film saw Mr Hamilton spend 18-hour days in the library.

“I was working overnight, and during the day I’d fall asleep between some shelves somewhere.

“I quite liked the transport section, it had nice little overhangs by the desk which I could kind of curl up underneath.

“Mills and Boon was also good, because there were padded seats for old people.”

Palmerston North City Library commissioned the film in order to show the public the way the library has diversified in recent years, says digital engagement librarian Nicole Bennik.

“We’re not just a dusty bookshelf. The library is known as the living room of the city, and we wanted a way to show that to the world.

“The film has scenes where the person is still and everything is moving around them. We did that because we wanted to show that the world is a busy place outside, but when you’re here in the library it’s a lot more tranquil.”

These scenes were created using a variation on traditional time-lapse filming, and involved cutting the interviewees out of each scene frame by frame, Mr Hamilton says.

“I didn’t want to just use [time-lapse filming] because it’s been done before and it’s getting done a lot these days.

“I wanted to try make it a little different, so I added in live footage, which just made the whole thing much, much more complicated.”

A single scene in the one minute seven seconds film took an average of four to five days to edit.

The movie also features a cameo from Sir Ian McKellan, who Mr Hamilton interviewed about his love of books after seeing him speak at the Globe Theatre.

Mr Hamilton then painstakingly spliced the interview into a shot taken in the library, creating a near-seamless effect.

“It is absolute, total manipulation. I hope he’s not upset about that.”

Though Mr Hamilton currently makes his living creating films for Destination Manawatu, he is unsure whether his future will involve film-making.

“I’m a Christian, so I try to stay open to what God tells me to do.

“If God says go be an organic farmer, then I’d go do that.”

And in regards to that little intruder misunderstanding, Mr Hamilton understands why the sight may have been unsettling to the public.

“I was wearing pyjamas at the time, so it did look a bit bizarre.”

 

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