August 07, 2006

6: On Aquisition

A stash of my dad's stuff; stumbled upon Sunday, unseen since the 70's
top: a white enamel boby pin from my mother's nurses uniform
center: pins from brunei schools, the british red cross, Toronto swimming, etc.
bottom: a tiny Time Magazine pencil

I'm told that I'm like my father in that I'm a packrat and that I love collecting all sorts of junk. What do you do with it? Isn't it just garbage? Why would you want to keep that? Nick, throw it away. And I do eventually, or I don't, and I forget that I ever had it, and it moults in some box somewhere. What drives the desire to possess?

Aquisition is communion, the way I see it; a way of bridging time, memory, place, and person. Collecting is a celebration of human accomplishment; the mysteries of design; the mysteries of fate and happenstance. When you're in contact with stuff in this way, you're connecting with everyone and everything behind it; the world becomes alive with history, and you become a part of this throughline.

If you were to ask me what drives my interest in animation and film, I would tell you that it's an interest in life; Storytelling becomes a way to capture, explore, wrestle with, learn about and preserve the things of life. I think that when you start to personalize--to see the story that you connect to--projects can't help but feel worthwhile. Find the value in the work.

As Robert Henri exclaims:
"I can think of no greater happiness than to be clear-sighted and know the miracle when it happens. And I can think of no more real life than the adventurous one of living and liking and exclaiming the things of one's own time."

My grandfather's cufflinks from Expo 70 in Japan


  1. WOW!! These are precious!

  2. Hey Nick,

    Cool Trinkets! I love that stuff.

    Congrats on your new position! I was showing your work to some of my colleagues the other day, everyone loved it. Glad to see Pixar recognized some of the genius too.

    Best of Luck!