When I was preparing my ideal job essay, I realized, that we all rely on the VFX industry. Be it in films where VFX is used to bring our imagination to life or in music and out of class educational videos. VFX has changed the cinema experience. It is no surprise they highly sort after individuals.
To be an artist, we ought to be tenacious, passionate and creative as the job is time and labor intensive and due to competition the artist is under constant pressure to outshine a previous film. Critical transferable skills include: communication, research, organization, problem solving and collaboration.
Some of the duties include
- Using software’s to create animation
- Developing new projects that create realistic designs
- Creating storyboards
Inspirational VFX artist that you should know:
1. Allan McKay- over 20 years’ experience and an award-winning visual effects supervisor.
2. Anselm von Seherr-Thoss- Award-winning visual effects director and an Autodesk Artist of the year. He actively worked on Avatar and Star Trek.
3. Ian McQue- a man of many hats: art director, concept artist, illustrator and a visual development film freelancer.
4. In-Ah Roediger – you have seen her works on Harry Potter, Framestore and Goblet of Fire. She started off in 2D animation and helped in bringing Smurfs in 3D on the big screens.
A career in VFX is most undoubtedly rewarding, and VFX job opportunities are booming. In the successive texts is a breakdown of the available professional opportunities in the VFX industry.
VFX Career Opportunities
1. Layout Artist
The central role is breaking down 2D storyboards into 3D shots. As a layout artist, you stage every shot and plot the next action in the scene. The props, characters and every object in the background are under a layout artist. As the name suggests, the work of the layout artists is typically setting a foundation for the film.
2. Lighting Artist
Light in filming is as essential as oxygen is to humans. Lighting creates the mood and realism of the scene. A lighting artist as the name suggests applies lighting effects to the scene. He or she is tasked to ensure the VFX, and the action elements are seamless as if they belong in the same environment. The artist takes into consideration the light sources in the scene over which VFX features are placed and if necessary add secondary virtual lighting to illuminate the characters and add aye glint.
3. Rendering Artist
Artist rendering is a painting or drawing of an artist’s imagination or experience. The rendering artists are the special breed of professionals that create photorealism from concept sketch. A highly technical job that carries the weight of transforming an idea into a visual.
4. Compositing Artist
The visual effects of a well-done film should merge seamlessly with the background without distracting the viewer. In my opinion, a compositor’s job is among the toughest. The artist needs to ensure there are no disturbances in the film and the seamlessness of the VFX and the action is intact. A slight ignorance and it spoils the viewer’s experience. The artist may use tools like Adobe After Effects, Motion, Nuke among others to create an overall balanced look.
5. 3D Animator
Gone are the days when animated movies were meant exclusively for children. In the current age, more adults are into animated films. The role of a 3D animator is to model and rig the characters, create special effects and plan the animated environment. The work incorporates the use of a computer to digitally model three dimensional objects that walk, talk, or even bounce. It is an incredible job that gives one the capability of replicating human motion accurately.
6. Match Move Artist
They are also known as the 3D Trackers as they position tracking points on live action shot and calculate the tracking points that result into coordinates that enable CG geometry to convincing fit into live action. A match mover needs to be a meticulous person for the role also involve imitating the camera movements in the live action shots. The imitating movements are later translated into 3D movements by the help of tools like 3D equalizer, Maya or Shake.
7. Matte Painter
Have you watched Wonder Woman or Harry Potter or any film or clip with incredibly beautiful almost magical landscapes? Yes? A matte painter works with still photography, digital paint or the old painting technique on glass to create virtual backgrounds that enhance live-action photographed plates. These artists can produce cities with unfeasible buildings, forest oceans or dangerous environments where the live action takes place.
VFX is ushering in a new era in the Media and Entertainment Industry with massive international projects the world over. As a young mind aspiring to be a VFX artist, the society is advocating we take to encourage and dive into the industry and explore the countless opportunities awaiting us.