What is your background?

Hello everyone! I’ve been on and off about FX and RTVFX and I was curious about what backgrounds you all have. Did you major in something? What did you major? Are you switching careers?

Also, a bit of an extra question: Do you think your background helped you with learning FX?

I’ll be waiting for your replies :3

Hey, thats a good question actually, cant wait to see what others are going to reply :smiley:
I started my career in an aircargo business 6 years ago, which was pretty much a normal, boring office job. During that time I was working a lot of nightshifts where I spent most of my time teaching myself 3D modelling and game art in general. After 3 years I quit my well payed but super boring job and moved to a different country to study Game Art and 3D Animation. Unfortunately, the classes were very very basic so I ended up already knowing 80% of what got taught there. While I was working through my bachelors, I got the opportunity to start a job as a 3D Artist where I am at right now. I realized pretty quickly that modelling props isn’t what I want to do though because for me its not technical enough. My current situation is, that I’m starting to teach myself how to do VFX because I want to switch my career. I always enjoyed working with shaders and procedural tools like substance designer and I hope that I can use that knowledge I gained to get to my goal faster of becoming a hirable VFX artist . And yes, I already see that my previous knowledge of 3D modelling is helping me immensely with my VFX and also being able to work in a game company allowed me to learn a lot of stuff about game development that you won’t learn in any school.

I’m eager to know that too and was thinking about asking something similar for quite a while. :star_struck:

I had some initiation on 3D modelling about 10 years ago and ended up abandoning it.
4 years later I revisited it in 3D animation College course where I did get to try some of 3D Modelling for ArchViz and 3D Character Modelling (sculpting in Sculptris and finishing it on 3Ds Max) - I kinda liked it but ended up dropping college course as a whole :confused:

I got to mess around in Unreal BPs for a game I was trying to make all by myself. At that time I also made one Thruster effect for the spaceship I had in this prototype, but that was it - I didn’t stick with game VFX at that time, but really liked it!

It was only around March 2022 that I really got in VFX…‘for real’. - I’m a newbie!

Even though I didn’t advance much in all areas I tried, I got to know some of the process and scratched the surface of most thing involved in game production (I think).
It definitely helps me on getting things going faster when I first pick it up, but it’s just that…faster starts. For example, I was already familiar with Photoshop and 3D softwares, so I didn’t have a hard time when first picking it up for making Textures and Meshes, respectively. Same goes for using Shuriken Particle System in Unity - I had used Niagara in Unreal before, so…

Again, I think that’s just a faster start, no big deal. And the only reason behind it is because I already got to have my slow starts before in life, when first approaching these softwares.

When I try to make an effect that looks “good” (pro level) I quickly hit thick walls in the process and progress is really slow - specially when it comes to Shaders. Usually, I end up with something not good, to be honest. And this is kinda expected too because, well, I’m only some months into it.

My girlfriend has zero software familiarity and she is able to follow along Gabriel Aguiar courses. Thing is she just takes a little bit more time (more rewinds) because the most “advanced” software she has ever used in life before Unity, Photoshop and Blender was…Paint? :rofl:
Plus she says she doesn’t really get some of the stuff on the fly. Like, when wiring things in shader, she usually has to revisit or ask me what all that wiring is actually doing for the effect in screen.

I went to a vocational school to learn 3d art. We had an afternoon of FX work, and that was basically it. Went through all the Gnomon Workshop Maya dynamics DVDs, and found the only realtime tutorial there was on the UT3 collectors edition bonus disc.

And that was it. Been doing it ever since. This was… 2008.

I’m a mechanical engineer graduate, while on my internship (2020-2021) I started dabbling in 3D modelling in my free time and got together a crew of my friends to build a game because I needed somewhere to use those assets, I found out I really liked creating stuff so I just started learning more and more, including animation, texturing and finally VFX (Still working on the game btw - Grand Gate on Steam!).

Here I am now… decided to focus on VFX as this is really the thing that brings me the most joy, maybe because of my technical background or maybe because it enables us to be a lot more creative, but I really like modelling and animating too. Oh and the math skills I learned definitely helped while learning VFX.

Currently solely focused on building Grand Gate with my friends and improving my vfx skills so I share my time between those 2 activities, but we’ll see what the future holds in store! . Oh yeah, forgot to add that I’m also working on more packs for the epic marketplace and might look into some freelance in the meanwhile. (Gotta earn the :moneybag: so I can keep learning )