Thursday, April 30, 2009

More from Double Negative's Ziah Fogel

Earlier this month, Pixar and Double Negative lectured at Hyper Island. We were happy to take the opportunity to ask Double Negative Senior Technical Director Ziah Fogel questions about the visual effects field:

What skills are typical among successful visual effects artists?
Successful visual effects artists are generally good communicators, easy-going, good at time-management, highly motivated over-achievers. The more technical usually have great math and computer programming skills, can communicate with artists, and have a decent visual eye. The more artistically inclined have amazing visual arts skills, can relate to more technical people, and are competent with computers. Everyone working in visual effects should be prepared for tight deadlines and lots of work, but also lots of fun!

What qualities make a successful intern?
The most successful interns are fast learners, have some general knowledge about the area they're interning in, and communicate well. They're also highly motivated, enthusiastic, and ready to learn new things!


Ziah Fogel, Senior Technical Director at Double Negative and John Pottebaum, Technical Director at Pixar visited Hyper Island in April.
Photo: Gregory Solenström, Digital Media 2010 Stockholm

Please describe your impression on Hyper Island students in 3 words.
Self-motivated, problem-solvers, diverse.

What would you recommend Hyper Island's Motion Graphics Designer students to do to keep up to speed with the latest technology and trends?
You should read as much as you can - about everything in the latest technologies. Try to speak to people in your field (or similar fields) about how they're doing things and what they see as new trends. Push yourself to learn new things throughout your career, and if you ever feel like you're not learning or growing as fast as you'd like, do something to get yourself out of that rut!

What sources of inspiration do you recommend to those who want to work with motion?
Watch as many films as you can, read as many magazines or blogs about the areas you're interested in, and communicate with others in your industry.

What's your best advice to those who want to work with visual effects?
Getting your foot in the door in the visual effects industry can be difficult. Don't get discouraged - keep trying! Make an amazing reel and work hard until you get a break. Sometimes the easiest way to get your foot in the door is with an internship, or by working your way up by starting as a PA or a runner at an animation or VFX house, using your free time learning the tools and speaking to people who are doing the job you want to do!


Thank you Ziah!

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