The One Academy’s highly anticipated Virtual International Design & Creative Masterclass returns for the third series, featuring esteemed international speakers who are professionals in the fields of digital animation, visual effects, illustration, interior architecture and design, as well as digital media technology.
Jay Mehta is currently a Visual Effects Supervisor at Netflix and is based in Mumbai, India. He has more than 14 years of experience in the VFX industry with more than 27 movie credits under his name. In his session, he shared industry know-hows, technical insights on the overall workflow, roles and responsibilities of a visual effects supervisor and also bonus behind-the-scene materials that the audience certainly enjoyed getting a glimpse of.
He has worked on The Golden Compass and Life of Pi, which are Academy Award-winning films in the Best Visual Effects category. Other notable titles that he has contributed work to include Agent Carter (Season 1), The Great Wall, Aquaman, Snow White and the Huntsman, Monster Hunt 2, Fengshen Trilogy, Alvin and the Chipmunks, Mr. Popper’s Penguins, Percy Jackson: Sea of Monsters and more.
He explained that visual effects is a digital process by which the captured live action shot is either manipulated, enhanced or computer generated imagery is added to showcase storytelling outside the scope of real-world filmmaking. He then showed the audience snippets of the visual effects breakdown for Agent Carter, Aquaman and The Great Wall, which is the before and after of what was actually shot at the film set versus what layers had been put in to actually achieve the final result.
He also talked about the current scenario in the VFX industry, where demand has skyrocketed due to OTT platforms such as Netflix, Disney+, Prime Video, Apple TV and HBO Max, as more people are consuming entertainment at home. He said that as studios are getting booked for the next few years and there is more work in the market than the number of artists or studios, now is a prime time for a visual effects artist to be in the industry.
He also shared some quick tips to excel in the industry, which are: learn the basics of the trade, have patience, always practice, manage time and set goals, observe the surroundings, learn to work in a team, don’t stop experimenting and trying new things, push boundaries and think of how to make things even better, ask questions – because there is never a wrong question, showcase the best work and never stop learning, because the industry is constantly changing with new technologies coming into play.
For students who are interested in studying VFX, unless they already know what they want to specialise in, he suggests to understand the entire spectrum of visual effects – artwork, modelling, texturing, lighting and others, to understand the functions of specific departments and then figure out where their interest or specialty lies.
“Your passion has to drive your goal. If you are passionate, you are doing something new almost every day as a visual effects artist,” he concluded in his sharing.