This past weekend, I was fortunate enough to attend the Director’s Guild “Digital Day,” there really wasn’t anything groundbreaking.

There was the standard phalanx of digital cinematography tools (which, I’m going to have more to say about below), post-production tools – and some other innovative stuff, but nothing totally earth-shattering.

Until Ray Bradbury spoke.

Just before he was wheeled in (he’s in a wheelchair now) from the wings of stage left in Theater 1, a giant picture of him as a 5 or 6 year old boy was projected on the screen. A young boy with the slight scowl of being annoyed at standing in one place long enough to have his picture taken, and some small bit of wonder at the world that we all have when we are children.

Ray Bradbury, somehow, almost impossibly so, has retained to this day that sense of wonder, and “what if” that not only resulted in all the wonderful works of his career, but so obviously permeates the mans heart so deeply that he is driven to share it in every word he speaks. When he speaks of a few of the events that shaped his life as a storyteller, the affect and love of which he spoke of the people and moments, are so palpable that at a couple of points I had to wipe away tears.

So rarely do we see people with such gifts, who boldly acknowledge that there are emotions of virtue, and the honest expression of them fills our life with a breath that is far from ordinary. Those emotions, virtues, ideals… and honest expressions are mostly locked up and put away in favor of things that we hope won’t make us appear weak or foolish to our peers and the world at large.

To them, Ray Bradbury continues to thumb his nose. All the way up to his final “Now I’m gonna get the hell outta here” and the long standing ovation that followed, his inspiration will stick with me for a long time.

To Mr. Bradbury, I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

More to come on the practical bits of Digital Day and all the thoughts about it swirling around in my head.