Baxter the raccoon makes his way into Granny’s Sweet Shop, but upon entering he gets so obsessed with the candy that he creates his own downfall.
Baxter is my senior thesis film produced at The Savannah College of Art and Design. Production Link: tycoyle.com/seniorfilm
The 41st Annual Student Academy Awards – The Student Oscars – Best Animated Film Nominee Winner – Best Animation – The Los Angeles International Underground Film Festival 2013 Winner – Best Student Film – The New Jersey Film Festival Spring 2014 Winner – Best Animation – The River Bend Film Festival 2014 Winner – Best Animation – The Atlanta Underground Film Festival 2014 Winner – Outstanding Achievement in Animation – Williamsburg International Film Festival 2014 Winner – Award of Merit – Best Shorts Competition 2014
“Wanderers and vagabonds have brands that are on the walls, trees and doors to inform of his ilk a little about the people who live in the houses and farms as they go on their travels. I think cats must leave similar signs. How else explain what the cats that appear on our door during the year, hungry, infested with fleas and abandoned? “
A short animation based on the story by Neil Gaiman “The Price”, published in “Smoke and Mirrors”.
“Ernest and Celestine” |Trailer US  Animated
Oscar-nominated for best animated movie. In English.
Deep below snowy, cobblestone streets, tucked away in networks of winding subterranean tunnels, lives a civilization of hardworking mice, terrified of the bears who live above ground. Unlike her fellow mice, Celestine is an artist and a dreamer – and when she nearly ends up as breakfast for ursine troubadour Ernest, the two form an unlikely bond. But it isn’t long before their friendship is put on trial by their respective bear-fearing and mice-eating communities. Fresh from standing ovations at Cannes and Toronto Ernest & Celestine joyfully leaps across genres and influences to capture the kinetic, limitless possibilities of animated storytelling. Like a gorgeous watercolor painting brought to life, a constantly shifting pastel color palette bursts and drips across the screen, while wonderful storytelling and brilliant comic timing draw up influences as varied as Buster Keaton, Bugs Bunny and the outlaw romanticism of Bonnie and Clyde. Bringing it all together is the on-screen chemistry between the two lead characters – a flowing, tender and playful rapport that will put a smile on your face and make your heart glow. Based on the classic Belgian book series by Gabrielle Vincent, Ernest & Celestine is winner of the Cesar Award for Best Animated Feature and numerous festival prizes. (c) GKids
Rating: PG (for some scary moments) Genre: Animation , Art House & International , Science Fiction & Fantasy Directed By: Vincent Patar , Benjamin Renner Written By: Daniel Pennac Runtime: 1h 20m
“When you get to the end of all the light you know and it’s time to step into the darkness of the unknown, faith is knowing that one of two things shall happen: either you will be given something solid to stand on, or you will be taught how to fly.” ― Edward Teller
Written by Shawn MacKenzie Post Tuesday 16th December 2014
In the Realm of the Senses
“Observe, record, tabulate, communicate. Use your five senses. Learn to see, learn to hear, learn to feel, learn to smell, and know that by practice alone you can become expert.” …. Sir William Osler, M.D., C.M.
Last night I was watching the cats play with the chinchillas (a special birthday treat for the kittens). Claws sheathed, eyes wide, ears forward, whiskers twitching, and mouths open to taste the air, they were totally in the now, absorbing the experience with every sense at their disposal. The chins, too.
Oh, the lessons we learn from our companion critters everyday!
Try though we might to place ourselves on a separate, gilded rung of the evolutionary ladder, we human beings are still animals. Like other furred, feathered, or scaled creatures, we still count on our senses to guide us through the world. Sight, sound, touch, taste, and smell, they layer our existence, give it depth and intrigue. They teach us what is safe, what is deadly, what is sexy, what is repulsive. Indeed, without well-honed perceptions, we would surely be as dead as the dodo.
Curiously, though we live by our senses, many writers have forgotten to write by them. Oh, we communicate through sight, sure. We are highly visual creatures. The aspects of person or place, the colors, shadows, shapes, all are accessible, familiar, and easy to share. Sound usually comes in second, then the other senses fill out the field from afar.
But why should this be? We do not live in half worlds, why should we write in them?
Just imagine if we wrote with all our senses, all the time; if we returned to our animal selves with ears up, nostrils flared, gleaning and giving information at every turn. A Victorian sitting room, for example, may be all teak and William Morris wallpaper to the eye, but perhaps it also smells of lemon oil and stale pipe tobacco, the chair by the fireplace creaking ever so gently when sat upon. This tells the reader so much more than a visual description alone. The resident has taste and a comfortable income; they take pride in their environment, keep it well. As for the lingering scent of tobacco – scent being one of the most evocative of the senses – oh, that can go a hundred ways! A father lost in the Crimea, his spirit conjured by the slightest whiff of his favorite chair; a pretentious brother who fancies himself the next Sherlock Holmes but went up to Oxford at Michaelmas.
Layers, one on another…
We are writers. Our purpose is to communicate, to move, to inspire. We take our knowledge of the world and give it back, limited only by our imaginations. So why stop with familiar? Why not go all topsy-turvy? We can focus, perhaps, not on how a city looks, but on how it tastes; not on how a thunderstorm sounds, but on how it smells. And let us not forget the rasping tongue of a whisper or the intricate fugue of a meteor shower.
As Dr. Osler said, learn to hear, to see, to smell. Dig deep; use all your senses. And next time you write about the first green shoots of spring, do not ignore their verdant voices raised to the heavens in paeans of rebirth. Welcome to the Big Picture. Have fun.
I will try to respond to messages as I am able. At times it may be in the form of a post or a direct email response. Guests who post, I will forward messages addressed to them. It is up to them how they decide to correspond. — Shawn MacKENZIE – MacKenzie’s Dragonsnest
see you down the rabbit hole.
namaste! madison taylor
It’s the Way You Love Me
Private Writings: Chapter #41 — The Killing
Tuesday 24th June 2008
One of our animals died. Molly, my horse, at least the one I always ride. She lived 34 years. It was a week of joy and flips over to death from being way too old to be alive. What makes the best age to die? If life gets out of control. You feel you have no future. Those who earn from you, aren’t earning. What is the solution to this problem? Who earns more, a live Picasso, or a dead John Lennon?
Why do those we let in, who we get close to, have to die? Which means another abandonment. I am so much closer to animals. Scottie called one of our exotic companion animals a human. At first, I thought I heard wrong. Just think deeply. They are human. Animals are. I’m sure the Christian Right would balk at being put on the same level of animals. Their feeling of being in the highest order is a birthright. A convincing argument for their feeling of superiority. Everyone else should starve to death.
Not my belief. Animals are righteous. The higher level belongs to them. They don’t work for a living, they just live. No reporting to a 9 to 5. No boss. Yes, there is a hierarchy with animals but so different than how people have fucked over who we are and how we live. It’s a hierarchy of a few who own the controlling interest of the world. Then there are the slaves, bearly making it from day to day.
It feels strange to lose someone. Molly has been in my life for over half the time I’ve been alive. I’ve known her since I witnessed her birth. In the heat of a late summer’s night. Now she is gone. I don’t do loss very well. And right now, I want to feel great having Alison back.
She got right into the business. Scottie took her to our studio today. Editing on “Touched by the Spirit” needs attention. Alison is “jumping right into the deep end.” Who came up with that line? It tends to get you drowned. I, literally, did it once, and pretty nearly didn’t survive. It is a haunting. Someone wants me to die inhaling water rather than air. No last breath of that to go out on. Hope it is not an Omen. Don’t want to die that way.
Do I have a particular way I would like to go out taking my last bow? First, I would like to be healthy the rest of my life. Second, I want to create till the very end, my mind would be quick, witty and sharp. Third, I want to drift off inside the best dream ever and drift away forever inside my dream. Everyone I love would be there or join me there. An after-life filled with all the ultimate pleasures surrounded by love and bliss.
Death is all around me. My senses are always connecting close to the edge of time and infinity. We may close off the reception but it is there waiting to break through into my consciousness.
It feels good to have our family together. Alison fits perfectly. No jealousy. Pure love, respect and caring all around us. I think it makes a difference Alison having her own home on the estate. The Chateau de Rocher is always her home but she needs her own home, where she can build her life. We made a pack to always eat dinners together when the film allows it or if any one of us has an important private engagement. We, Scottie and I, want Alison to have a personal life.
Curious, we never discussed with Alison what her inclination with intimacy and where her crushing love swings. She has never shown a personal interest in either sex or transgender individuals. She doesn’t seem interested in or notices others who might be attracted to her. Never gave time to romantic closeness. Should we be concerned?
Not everyone is interested in sexual intimacy or relationships with a romantic undercurrent. She rejects any possibilities of engaging with anyone. No reason to be concerned. Alison never talked or wrote about anyone special. She had friends but nothing ever went beyond the closeness of a friendship.
Are we good parents to not get into a discussion with Alison? She may not know how to talk to anyone about closeness of an intimate nature. I feel for her. Not my strongest ability growing up with my morally corrupt family. I didn’t know I needed someone to talk to me. Not something I did growing up, talking. Strictly quiet unless I lost it and began crying.
When that happened, all scattered, abandoning me with the Shadow Mother. A Bogeyman of the scariest kind. They hide in the shadows under your bed or in the closet while the light is switched off, only came out at night. Daytime, they would transform from shadows, entering into people who accepted their terms. Anything goes, and not of the musical kind.
My mother was one of those, who made the deal. She became possessed by evil. Her punishment was calculating and torturous. A former member of the Spanish Inquisition. One of the Torturers. She especially liked hot burning items, silk scarves to bide hands and silencing any noise coming from my mouth, and devices for striking the flesh. Often whips of various lengths and bites. Right out of the cupboards of the Marquis de Sade. Sadistic and Masochistic. With the Shadow Mother there were no safe words. I am not so sure if the Marquis de Sade had them either.
The Shadow Mother has been dismissed. Will that stop her hauntings? Sometimes it’s important to out your daemons, in order to steal their power away. What happens then? I certainly don’t want it. No desire to be evil. I just want to feel. Let it be joy but tears are a form of bliss. Laughter through tears, the deepest feelings are evoked. Let sadness in. It isn’t meant to be rejected. Depression will secure a space if the truth of emotions are not allowed freedom of expression.
Some law should be carved into the Constitution: Freedom of Emotions, but unlike guns, no one is allowed to do harm.
It has been an elevator ride this week with moods. Manic, excited, happy our girl is home. Exhausted with sadness, our Molly is gone. It was too sudden. Death should be required to give fair notice. Not with misery but with time to prepare. And no, one should not prepare for death the moment we are born. “No one expects the Spanish Inquisition.” I suppose death feels the same.
Let’s switch to optimism and an endless supply of time.
It’s time for “Brief Sacrifice” and my favorite closing line.
“Time can be folded and joined with all elements in all places as the one ultimate moment when time is all at once. In this place everything happens on a continual loop following into a continuum of time forever into infinity. In the “Silver Box,” there is contained the ability to draw time into itself and create the perfect infinite moment.”
For you, I will end this letter in “the moment between seconds.”