Ladies and gentlemen, Andy Hines is on fire.
These past few months have been graced by summer anthem videos like Jason Derulo’s “Kiss the Sky”, literal flames in “Ballin” by Juicy J feat. Kanye, and a groovy, neon infused flow in Busted’s come back video “On What You’re On”- all thanks to the creative vision and talent that is Black Dog director Andy Hines. Somehow, between all the work and travel, Andy managed to sit down with us and provide key insight about his path into the music video space, what he’s working on, and what his mixtape would (or might be?) titled…
Wow. This summer has been full of incredible videos from you! How has it been working with these huge talents and have you had any time to breathe between working and traveling so much?
It’s been an incredible summer, I didn’t have a day off for seven weeks. That’s how I like it, I would much rather be working every day and writing every night than having any time down. Even when I’m not on a job, I’m always working on other things, I have two feature films and a TV series in development at the moment and they need my attention every moment I can spare!
Everyone’s dying to know- what was it like working with Kanye?
It’s been an absolute pleasure since the first time I met him on my set for the “Ballin'” video at the end of June. He loved the look and color of what I had designed for his scene with Juicy, and it jump started a conversation on what we could do next together. There is a mutual respect present in every conversation, I love getting calls from him out of the blue.
That’s so cool. How did you land in the music video space?
My main focus since finishing my masters degree at the Mark was feature films and screenwriting. While developing projects, I knew I still wanted to be directing, and it was a natural transition to move it to directing music videos and television commercials as well as branded content.
At first I struggled to balance making projects for free to try and build a reel, while wanting to do big projects that made sense for my efforts. It took two years of an ebb and flow between working all the time and not working at all before things settled in on a more secure path for me. I wrote and directed “One Man Can Change The World” for Big Sean, Kanye and John Legend and we won an MTV VMA for that. After that, I started to have better opportunities presented to me and I joined Black Dog.
That decision was easy for me because I knew what the company was like and I admired how they function. I have many film interests outside music videos, and the support of Black Dog for my future endeavors, and now the support of RSA is bringing me closer to the goals I’ve set out for myself.
What would your mixtape be titled?
Air Canada Vol 1. For sure…
That’s absolutely incredible. What can we expect next from you?
I can’t even tell you half the things I want to but if the dots connect it will be historical. Right now, I’m just trying to change the format of music videos, I’m trying to expand the vision and say no to the things that we’ve been doing the same since the first handful of videos premiered on MTV 30 years ago.
We need to change, we need to evolve and I want to be at the forefront of that shift in making music videos more cinematic, more experimental and say no, nothing needs to stay the same, everything can change.
In 2017, I want to make projects that speaks to the things that matter most to me. Part of my talent as a filmmaker is in engaging and entertaining, while having a message no matter how small a part it plays. Life’s too short not to make a statement. I have to use my talents to help bring positivity and light to the people that watch my work, so that’s what I’m going to do.
Photos by Orli, 1st Impressions Studios.