HDY designer Gaz Burns selected to showcase at Birmingham Design Festival

13th August 2021

It’s official! HDY’s epic designer Gaz Burns, has been personally selected by Birmingham Design Festival’s co-founder Luke Tonge. To showcase at The Creative City Exhibition.

On the 16th August, The Creative City Exhibition will launch this Summer’s postponed Birmingham Design Festival in Digbeth’s Factory Works, 6pm – 11pm.

This year’s core festival theme is bold and powerful – colour. Hundreds of our region’s finest illustrators, designers, typographers, printmakers and artists have produced a poster utilising the same colour palette. The work exhibited will be a mixture of the personal and commercial, featuring everything from family histories to celebrations of food and music.

Fancy finding out a little more about our design dude Gaz Burns? Well, we sat him down for a little chit chat and a cuppa to talk all things BDF.


What was the brief?

It was beautifully stripped back, meaning we all had the freedom to make this personal. The theme was ‘The Creative City’ and only use the Birmingham Design Festival’s colours.

How did you come up with your idea?

I wanted to come up with an idea that was really personal to me rather than the obvious Birmingham cliches. To me the creative city is made up of creative individuals, so I wanted to talk about what makes my creativity tick.

What was your creative solution?

The solution was an ode to a routine that helped my mental health over lockdown. A clear mind helped me stay creative over this past year or so. Every morning I ran along the soho loop – there was something about being alone with my thoughts first thing in the morning. From there, I created a typographic collage combined with the colour palette of BDF. Which highlighted some of the things I thought about or experienced when I was on these runs.

What does this creative piece mean to you?

It’s very personal, which is why I think it’s special to me. The positive impact running has had on my mental health is the reason I do it. It’s not about distance or time, more about the action of just getting up and getting out there. When I haven’t had a run in the morning, I can feel a difference in how I’m feeling creatively – now it’s a new routine which I never want to give up.

What does it mean to be a part of the exhibition?

To be a part of the exhibition was a big surprise and a massive honour – it blew me away when I saw my name surrounded by all of the other amazing people and artists that have been selected to showcase in the event too.

What does it mean to Brum?

I think the exhibition is amazing because it’s providing the opportunity to highlight what makes everyone unique in this city. For me, the canals of Birmingham have helped me cope mentally during this weird time, and this has been a really interesting and exciting process to go through to communicate this story of mine.


Whether you’re a like-minded creative, a colour-lover or just fancy a social. Come and join us at 6pm @ Factory Works to celebrate the talent of our very own Gaz Burns and the super cool design dudes of the region.