Courtney Price is a Visual Effects Specialist who has worked on films including Zombieland, Avatar, A-Team, Taking of Pelham, Wolfman, and GI Joe. Here, he gives 5 tops tips for succeeding in the VFX Industry. He will be giving a Workshop on Special Effects on Sunday 5th July at 15:00
- Be Proactive, Stay Busy – Get hold of software, borrow hardware/cameras, create small projects, ask questions, share knowledge, help your peers, collaborate etc. The more you do or try to do will only increase your experience. This will greatly improve your chances for success. Ultimately we work in a Creative Industry and you need to create in order to be Creative. Don’t be afraid to fail, try new techniques out. See how far you get and if it doesn’t work learn from the mistakes and try again. It is all experience that contributes to success.
- Positive Attitude – Attitude counts for so much in the VFX industry. In all my travels and people I have met in the Industry, there has been one consistent factor, everyone generally has good attitude. Mainly because they are working in an Industry that they love rather than monetary rewards. People will gravitate to someone with a positive attitude and the success will follow. This carries you very far in this industry.
- Research – Stay in the know of future technologies, go on your favourite websites to get the lowdown on what is happening in the Industry. FXGuide.tv is a great source of info for VFX. Go to Tradeshows such as NAB, IBC, Siggraph, BVE and any other local events that pop up. Knowledge is key and more often than not will help you realise your vision. You don’t need to be an expert, but having a core understanding is vital.
- Networking – Use the social media platforms as networking platforms, Linkedin is how I connected with film director Menelik Shabazz. Don’t be afraid to ask for help when you need it. Congratulate others when you see work that you admire, don’t be too shy to tell them. Go to film festivals, signup to mailing lists, use community forums etc. Create a close circle of professional peers that all have different expertise and skills that you can share and ask for help with. There is a law of 33% by Tai Lopez; 33% of people you should inspire, 33% of people you should consider your peers and 33% should inspire you.
- Be Reliable & Disciplined – Set yourself realistic intermediate goals and stick to them. Even if your work is not the best, people will gravitate to someone that they know can deliver at an expected time, at an expected cost with an expected project. Inform the client all the way, and plan. Scheduling is import to being reliable, use a Calendar. Don’t get side tracked and manage time in bitesize chunks so that you don’t get disillusioned with a project.