The veil of civilization

There are certain moments in life which shed light on the madness that is the human existence in our technology based life.

We have had no electricity in large parts of the province for the last 2 days, and it is looking like it will be another 2 days before it all gets put back online. Luckily enough for me I happen to live 5 minutes from my work and so have spent considerable time sitting in our bistro plugged in and warm, burning through the time with reading and writing.

Outside is another matter. The disaster on the streets as people attempt to navigate without the aid of street lights, fire trucks and police going by at all times.

Technology has aided us immensely over the years,  but our reliance on it has rendered us helpless without it. Thousands of people have been left without a way to eat and stay warm inside their homes as the snow accumulates outside.

The most interesting facet is realizing the existential crisis as people deal with the loss of access to laptops, phones and televisions to entertain them at all moments of the day.

We have lost the ability to be silent within ourselves and allow our thoughts to run free, an extremely important skill to develop if you are someone looking to do creative work.

People are also unable to go a few hours without seeing a text, tweet or snap, this constant need to be in communication with the world and our friends is a trap that social media companies have ensnared us in.

The deeper realization is knowing that if these 4 days turned into 4 weeks or 4 months, that this veil of civilization that we have all built up would crumble to dust and the savagery of our species would be on full display for all to see.

We are all playing this game called “be nice”, and it would be swept away in an instant without access to food, water and shelter. It’s a sobering thought, and one that more people should be conscious of, it might lead us to actually be a bit more careful with the way we walk through life.

Don’t take things for granted. Be prepared, mentally and physically. Don’t be reliant on technology for your survival, because you never know how long it will be around for.

 

Breaking tradition: Looking to books for animation ideas

Sometimes society gets so stuck in it’s ways that it misses out on tremendous opportunities to expand it’s artistic repertoire, until someone comes around with an idea and the will to act upon it, smashing through the barrier of tradition.

We see it time and again in the music industry as musicians do away with the rules set down by the past generations and start entirely new genres.

Painting and drawing went through multiple renaissances over the millenia from scratches in cave walls to the masterpieces of Da Vinci and Michaelangelo.

Writing has changed tremendously in the last century as our ability to transmit information has shifted from paper to electronic and as the quantity of literate people has grown.

As we dive deeper into this tech driven age we are going to see paradigm shifts, and the bastions of the old traditions will not give away so easily. Sometimes that is a good thing, as there is beauty in old ways of doing things as well, balance is key.

Personally the biggest shift I want to see, which I have written of before, is for people to start using fantasy, sci fi and other novels to create animated worlds as we see the japanese do with their anime.  There is a massive amount of books just waiting to be brought to life, and we need to stop trying to make them into real life series and films when the animated genre is exploding and becoming more popular year after year.

Brandon Sanderson’s stormlight archives and mistborn series, Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time, Jim Butcher’s Codex Alera and so many other amazing authors have created beautiful worlds which could be realized in animated form, and yet because we have simply tossed this field to the Japanese and to Disney and Pixar for children, they lay dormant.

It just needs one team of dedicated people who love books and love the magic of animation to smash through these old ways of thinking to expand the genre into a whole different realm of experience.

There are a myriad of other domains that lie waiting for similar breakthroughs.

I look forward to a future where these potentials are realized.