Why I do what I am doing…

Month: May, 2014

Beauty and Joy Without Words

The saddest thing I see in the world around me is a lack of care and compassion for others. It is the small things we can do for others, then step out of our comfort zone to actually do, are the most powerful moments in our lives. Small acts of kindness add up to a more fulfilled “us”

Simple acts of “seeing a need and filling it” are the ones that make the world spin a little better, and it is these things that can change lives. There is no way to know what one small action might lead to, or prevent. There is plenty of reason to try. One of the most beautiful short films I have ever seen was Deep and Crisp and Even, a Ten Minute Tale, written by Maggie and Peter Souter; starring Timothy Spall and Natasha McElhone.

This film is one of my favourite things to share with other people and I am yet to meet someone who doesn’t like it. Everyone – from my family to fellow film and literary students, lecturers, friends and their friends – have all gained something, from seeing this wordless masterpiece. Deep and Crisp and Even transcends cultural boundaries, language barriers and draws you in to a world of quaintness and innocence rarely seen in contemporary media. It is a gift of nine minutes and two seconds of loveliness, hope and selflessness.

This is the type of film I would love to create, this inspires me to push beyond the boundaries of what I have done, what I know and how I move through the world.

The ability to communicate without words is a rare skill, certainly one that I aspire to. The symbolism our ancestors understood and lived with is being lost. Use of colour, shapes, texture sound and physical expression – to enrich and convey layers of complex and multi-faceted meaning, is a skill being eroded by the acceleration of the information age. The knowledge of how to artfully combine these elements is what is key for many great works to transcend time. Capturing moments of zeitgeist in art is how cultural memory is developed, obtained and retained.

Without art that escapes stereotypes, (our) culture would stagnate and eventually wither away. Films like this little beauty are sentries against this cultural atrophy while also gifting its audience of a pause in their daily works.

I hope you enjoy it, please allow yourself to fall in love with it as I have…

The Secret to Pixar’s Genius From ‘Creativity, Inc.’ Sounds Like a Writing Workshop


Most business books are, in the words of Norman Mailer, “advertisements for myself,” the story of one person’s world-beating genius and how they made an industry out of it. But Ed Catmull’s Creativity, Inc., written with the wonderful Amy Wallace (frequently at GQ writing profiles — check out her D’Angelo piece), is markedly modest in scope. The main impression that you get off Catmull, the president of Pixar Animation and Disney Animation, is that he’s a kind man and obviously a genius, with a Ph.D. in computer science and the goal of creating the first computer animated film. And he goes through the life story of Pixar, how they met Steve Jobs, how they created things in a corner until they were creating things for Disney, in simple fashion.

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