I recently wrote a guest blog post for Sketchfab on my methods for recreating built heritage using archives, Blender 3D software and some heritage interpretation. Many thanks to the Sketchfab Cultural Heritage Lead Tom Flynn and the team! 🙂
I was very excited to play a part in the planning and facilitating of the Hull History Centre’s two recent Bring Your Own Device Minecraft workshops (14th & 21st August 2015).
Participants were invited to the History Centre with their laptops and tablets to recreate Hull’s historical architecture in the creative sandbox game Minecraft. During the events, participants received advice from the History Centre team and shared their work with others- we all had lots of fun exploring Hull’s architectural history in the home of Hull’s written heritage itself!
With my background in architectural history I was keen to get participants engaged with Hull’s wide variety of historical buildings- a topic I’m personally very excited about! I delved into the History Centre’s strongrooms to dig out interesting (and hopefully inspiring) old photographs and architectural plans for participants to recreate and then digitised these for use on learning handouts. The learning handouts included facts, dates, architectural styles, photos, plans- and even a Minecraft character dressed from the period!
The buildings chosen were:
Hull’s medieval fortifications
King Henry VIII’s Hull Castle
Hull City Hall
Dock Offices / Hull Maritime Museum
St Stephen’s Church
Lord Line building at St Andrew’s Quay
From medieval to georgian, neo-classical to gothic, I was particularly interested in seeing how our participants would engage with the archival material and which ones would keep them most interested. We had our clear favourites- Hull City Hall due to it’s familiarity, and Hull’s medieval fortifications (such as Beverley Gate and Hessle Gate).
We even held a “best screenshot” competition where building entries were judged by Hull History Centre archivists on effort and likeness to the original.
It was great to see so many participants come to the events, approximately 30 in each session! I particularly enjoyed the social, community feel, especially with participants sharing their builds and Minecraft tips and tricks. We will hopefully see everyone return to the History Centre in the future! Have a look at the History Centre’s fascinating variety of events to see what’s on offer!
UPCOMING: In the next few days you will be able to see more information on the events as a whole and see our competition winners on my upcoming History Centre blog post….
Enjoy a tour of our Minecrafter’s work: I recorded the entirety of the in-game footage from the second session and created a video to showcase some of the brilliant work by our Minecrafters. I hope you are as amazed as what we were by the quality of the work, well done to all our participants!
My survey is about the use of computer games for exploring historical architecture. My current project is the visualisation of St Mary’s Abbey in York (UK) before the Dissolution of the Monasteries and I hope to eventually make an application that allows the user to “walk around” the grounds to get a sense of what St Mary’s was like pre-1539. I also hope to add interactive elements and a narrative.
Your answers to my survey are valuable to aiding the development of the game side of my project and I appreciate answers from people who have varied opinions on gaming.
As part of my internship with the Institute for the Public Understanding of the Past (IPUP) and the York Museums Trust, myself and eleven other interns have been researching and writing scripts for a walking tour of Roman York- Eboracum- and this tour will be available in the form of a leaflet, a podcast and a downloadable app in the summer.
Last week, on the 24th June, we gave a trial run of our podcast scripts to the general public to gain feedback and learn where to refine our scripts. There was a surprisingly large turnout, around 30-40 in the audience. After our tour of Roman York consisting of six key locations had finished we deemed the trial predominantly successful with only minor alterations to make. This was a valuable experience in public presentation and engagement and I enjoyed answering the public’s questions and finding out their own historical interests.