An animated music video by a Cornish-based artist has scooped two silver awards at a prestigious ceremony in Tokyo. 

Animator Ignatius Rake, who is from St Austell, landed second place twice at the 2023 Japan Indies Music Awards for a video produced for his old school friend, Tokyo-based Cornish rapper MC Franker.

The song Los Molinos competed in both the Best Punk & Garage and Best Hip Hop categories, missing out on a Ninja, as the awards are affectionately known, to videos for big-name US punk band The Offspring and US rapper Ellect.

“Obviously, I would like to have landed top laurels at the bash but the fact Los Molinos got selected by the judges, let alone nominated for a Ninja twice, is a massive honour and a real reward in itself,” said Ignatius, known as Iggy to his friends. 

“It’ll only drive me on to make more music videos and hopefully grab gold at next year’s Japan Indies Music Awards.”

In the absence of a big budget and team, Ignatius is a one-man band, dreaming up the initial concept, creating all the artwork, animating each single frame and then editing and colour grading the final result. He has previously worked with members of Madness and Dexys Midnight Runners, as well as artists, bands and musicians from Poland and Japan. 

His animation work employs digital collages that he makes himself and which blend photographic realism with the physiologically impossible, inhabiting a world the Japanese call kimo-kawaii, or “adorably gross”. 

“Fortunately, MC Franker had written a really strong song with some very biting lyrics that were pretty easy to translate into imagery, so from that point of view this was a relatively straight-forward piece to make,” he said. 

“That said, it still took innumerable hours of hard work and concentration, so it’s really encouraging to get a big pat on the back like this.” 

Iggy and MC Franker met in the early 1990s at the old St Austell Sixth Form on Trevarthian Road. 

“When Iggy said he was making music videos, I asked him if he’d do one for Los Molinos,” said MC Franker. “The song’s about drinking in Tokyo, so it must have hit the right chord with some of the judges - or maybe it was the shot of Charlestown harbour used in the video.”

The ceremony was held at the Shibuya Milky Way Showroom in central Tokyo on May 17. In addition to Los Molinos, Ignatius had two further music videos selected for the awards, including She’s So Spector-Esque by St Austell-based ska and soul stalwart Andy Keys Clark.