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Advanced 3D For Visual Effects

This course is perfect…

  • If you want to jump to an advanced career in VFX
  • If you want technical-level skills in Visual Effects
  • If you’re serious about furthering your career in VFX
  • If you're a 3D artist wanting to develop a career in Visual Effects
  • For 2D VFX artists wanting to move into 3D
  • For student and graduate Visual Effects artists preparing for the job market
  • For creative and technical career changers
  • Want to find out more? Book a 1-2-1 with our admissions team now

Course Includes

  • Free online primer course before you start studying - so your foundation skills are up to speed
  • Access to Escape’s unique online learning platform
  • Access to our VLE system where you will be able to access additional resources to supplement your training throughout the duration of the course and 12 months of free access after completing the course.
  • Escape Aftercare and career support.
  • Help and advice on your CV, showreel and job applications
  • Free Autodesk Software upon registration to the Autodesk Education Community - full details included with course welcome information

Course Details

London, UK
Full-time Mon – Fri 10am-5pm
18 Weeks
Start Dates:
  • April 1st 2015
  • July 1st 2015
Maya, Photoshop, Mudbox, 3D Equalizer, Nuke, Houdini
Early Bird Discount:
Save £1,000 when you pay in full, 3 months before the course starts

Take Your Skills to Director Level


The Advanced Visual Effects course is designed for advanced placement at Technical Director level. This highly-intensive 18-week program is a full-on VFX knowledge assault. It begins by sharpening students’ 3D fundamentals with thorough technical understanding of software and principles, before moving on to Houdini and to the more complex dynamics of particle movement, hair, fur, and more. The course culminates in a major project where students produce a boundary-pushing FX shot to show-off their technical excellence. Pow.

See which Industry Partner will mentor this course


Success stories

James Dower

Advanced 3D For Visual Effects

James Dower

Escape graduate and escapee James Dower finishes Visual Effects Course and lands job at Framestore.


FAVOURITE YOUTUBE CLIP: Man Gobbles at Turkeys, Turkeys Gobble Back

PROJECTS: “If I told you I’d have to kill you”… but seriously, I can’t actually say its top secret at the moment.

WHY VFX? : “I saw a presentation from Dneg a few years back while I was studying; I was blown away, and thought “that’s what I want to do for a living””

ABOUT: James finished a VFX Professional course at Escape Studios just a few months ago, and after helping out at industry events and The VFX Festival as well as perfecting that all-important showreel he’s landed a job as a runner at Soho based post production giants, Framestore.

James’ Top Tips

ADVICE:  1) Don’t rush your showreel. It can be really tempting to get it uploaded as soon as you finish your course, but if you aren’t happy with the work on there, it’s going to work against you. Get a second opinion from someone who knows what they’re talking about, not just a friend!

2) Get a LinkedIn account if you haven’t already. It’s great to have an easily accessible list of your education, experience and skills on show, and it’s very useful in finding out what companies are recruiting and when.

3) Network as much as you can. There are quite a few events and expos for VFX out there. Meeting those already in the industry as well as aspiring artists like yourself is really helpful - you never know who might be working at a company you’re applying for in a few years’ time!   

James' Showreel

Diarmid Harrison-Murray

Advanced 3D For Visual Effects

Diarmid Harrison-Murray

Diarmid Harrison-Murray studied at Escape Studios and is now VFX Supervisor at world renowned post house MPC, the company responsible for VFX in The Lone Ranger, Godzilla, Guardians of the Galaxy and X-Men Days of Future Past.

Diarmid Harrison-Murray is VFX Supervisor at world renowned post house MPC, the company responsible for the VFX in blockbuster films such as Godzilla, the Harry Potter franchise, X-Men, Prometheus and Life of Pi, and famous advertising campaigns for brands such as Samsung, Coca Cola, Sony, Three Mobile and Channel 4.

Before joining Escape, jumping aboard one of our courses back in 2005, Diarmid was working in photography, dabbling in some of his own projects while also working as a photographer’s assistant and digital re-toucher.

He confesses to having had itchy feet in this profession, and being frank, didn’t see any long term stimulation deriving from this career path, when upon an honest word from a friend in the CG industry, who, identifying his transferrable skills, informed him that the right level of dedication would put him in good stead for work in the world of CG.

An old friend of mine who worked as a CG supervisor at the time mentioned CGI as a possible career path. He said that it was a huge subject to try and learn, but that if I stuck at it, and had some talent, there were jobs on the other side. I don't know how serious he thought I was, but I took him at his word and started teaching myself CG. This was the beginning of the winding road that led me to where I’m sitting now.

Having thrown caution to the wind, Diarmid made his way to Europe’s most prolific CG Academy, Escape Studios, to hone his skills as a CG artist, and hone his skills he did!

The success of our escapees speaks volumes when it comes to reaffirming the learning culture we have here at Escape, so naturally, we asked Diarmid about his time with us, and what he remembers the most about the learning process…

I guess the thing that I remember most fondly is just being in a supportive learning environment in which I could just explore and experiment with both creative and technical ideas. Surrounded by really smart tutors, most of whom had come directly from the industry, and other like-minded students, really meant it was a time of accelerated learning.

Diarmid has gone on to work on projects with BMW, Pepsi, Nokia, LG, and Coca Cola oh, and did we mention Diarmid was the CG supervisor for the opening Bond sequence? A subject we are looking forward to discussing with him in more depth in our upcoming live interview.

It was a great experience and a real honour to work on something with such a legacy. It has always been a dream of mine to work on a Bond title sequence, and being the CG Supervisor for the project. It was very hands on!

With such a stellar portfolio on his hands, it’d be rude not to ask for some golden words of wisdom, from the man who has climbed this proverbial VFX Mountain…

Stick at it. Make sure you gain a good understanding of all areas of 3D, and then start to focus your mind on the area that really interests you. It's a huge subject and you can't do all of it. Also make sure you learn around the area that you wish to master. If you're into ZBrush and sculpting, then why not sign up for a real clay sculpting course? If you're into rendering, then make sure you learn about real cameras and movie cameras as well. You really need to try and develop a skill base that is broad and more abstract that just learning a bit of software. Software will drift in and out of fashion, and if you just learn a bit of software without considering the underlying principles you run the risk of the same thing happening to you.

Sophie Robinson

Advanced 3D For Visual Effects

Sophie Robinson

Sophie Robinson was inspired to become an artist from an early age and it was traditional forms of art like model making and set design that held the most appeal for her...

Creature TD at Double Negative

“Some of the most talented CG artists work in London and its great to be working along side them"

Sophie Robinson was inspired to become an artist from an early age and it was traditional forms of art like model making and set design that held the most appeal for her. However the idea of also being able to sculpt and create digitally excited her. It made her think about the endless creative possibilities that were available to her in a 3D world. So she decided to take a look at some courses and here she is, a few credits later, with the likes of Scott Pilgrim vs. The World, Inception & Fantastic Mr Fox under her belt.

Let’s start at the Wimbledon School of Art where Sophie studied her degree. “Even though I was modelling 3D physically on a daily basis, I became intrigued by the idea of also being able to creating these models digitally. I’d heard about the CG industry and I thought it would be good to have another set of skills and tools”. After some research Sophie came across the Visual Effects course at Escape Studios. “The opportunity to learn the skills directed at a specific occupation, like visual effects, was so appealing”.

Remembering the 18-week Visual Effects Course, she explained how impressed she was with the quality of what was taught. “The course was so intense and I’m sure most students have said this, but you really have to want to become a VFX artist. It’s a pretty hard-core course and there is so much to take on board. Not only are you getting to grips with new software but you have to think technically and creatively at the same time. The tutors’ knowledge is really helpful though – it wasn’t just theoretical, but practical hands-on advice with tricks on how to do stuff’.

Sophie left Escape Studios and started out as a Matchmover at Double Negative. “Although I didn’t use the Recruitment Service at Escape, the guys were always hugely supportive and it was great to know that you had them on side if you needed advice about your showreel. What I love most about this industry is that there is so much to learn and do, and you could specialise in one particular area or keep things open and become a generalist. The opportunities are huge and the projects are really exciting. Escape Studios helped me take my artistic skill to the next level and I can’t thank them enough for that”.

Emma Berkeley

Advanced 3D For Visual Effects

Emma Berkeley

“I suppose my story proves that you can start a career in VFX whenever you want. I studied Geography at Uni but found Escape and started the career I’d always dreamt of”.

Junior Texture Artist –Cinesite

“I suppose my story proves that you can start a career in VFX whenever you want. I studied Geography at Uni but found Escape and started the career I’d always dreamt of”.

Catching the CG bug

Getting into trouble for printing out reams of paper on Pixar at school was the result of being hooked on Toy Story 2 aged 12. When most people her age were watching films, Emma was checking out behind the scenes documentaries on how Toy Story was made and busy telling people that it was what she was going to do when she grew up. “I couldn't believe people did that for a job - it was so creative and I just wanted to know more!”. Inspiration for becoming a CG artist didn’t stop there. Lord of the Rings had a big impact on Emma and proved to her that no matter how fantastical the idea, CG could make it possible. However, when Emma left school she stopped following the dream for a while, thinking that CG was a thing ‘they only did in Hollywood’. How wrong she was.


“I never lost interest in CG – it was always something I was passionate about, even when I was studying my degree in Geography”. So, after checking out some of the latest work and talent on post house MPC’s website, Emma found a link to Escape Studios. Deciding to take the plunge and find out more about Escape Studios, Emma found herself on one of our Open Days. “What really struck me wasn’t just the quality of work the students produced but also the links Escape had with the industry”. Emma was also excited by the prospect of being taught by industry professionals, she felt reassured by the fact that they had such extensive knowledge of an industry that was totally new to her. It just goes to show that no matter what you study before hand or what career you embark on, it’s never too late to begin a career in VFX.

Emma had wanted to become a VFX artist for so long that she jumped straight in to study our 18-week VFX Professional course.  As she put it “I was so hungry to learn as much as possible”. The course was challenging for Emma, there’s no doubt about that – it’s intensive and really does require a lot of dedication. But was it worth it? “When I look back and see the quality of work I was able to produce in such a short period of time, I’m amazed. Emma had heard about the likes of Maya and ZBrush, but had no idea that she would be using them so intensively throughout the course. “Escape isn’t about the theory; it’s about hands-on practical tuition”.

Making that reel

It’s not just about finishing a course at Escape – your showreel is the key to getting a job in the industry.  If you don’t have one, and a good one at that, you won’t even be considered. “The recruitment team were great at showing me the nature of the industry and also preparing me for it. They helped me get my showreel up to scratch: explaining what companies are looking for, how best to illustrate my skills and what I could do to improve it”. Emma is sure that without the wisdom of the Recruitment Team her reel wouldn’t have been half as good. “If just over a year ago someone had said to me that I was going to be a VFX artist at Cinesite, I wouldn't have believed them. What I get to do for a job now is just wonderful!”

Open Days

Open days

Our next open day will be at 9:30am on March 18th

At the Open Day you'll have the opportunity to see first-hand what happens at our studio based in London. You'll get he opportunity to meet the team, learn more about the courses we offer as well as take a peak in the studios and see what our students are currently working on. 

Join us at our London campus to:

  • Learn about the specialised jobs in VFX and Compositing
  • Understand the course options which suit you
  • Be a fly-on-the-wall in one of our classroom courses
  • Review successful student reels
  • Understand what skills you need to become studio-ready
  • Learn about student perks and soak up the atmosphere

Our Open Days sometimes feature guest industry speakers as well, so you can get a real insight into what life is like as a VFX Artist.


How to register for an Open Day

To book for an on campus Open Day simply fill out the form on the right hand side and our admissions team will be in touch to confirm your booking. You will also be sent more information about getting to Escape Studios and the programme for the day.

Get in touch

Feel free to email admissions@escapestudios.com if you have any other questions or would like more information about our Open Days.

Book a 1-2-1 advisory session 

If you'd prefer to speak to an Advisor direct about your training options, you can also attend our studios for a 1-2-1 with one of our friendly admissions team, just click here to Book a 1-2-1 session.

Register for an Online VLE Tour

If you are interested in studying with us online, why not register for the Online Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) Tour. This short video will take you through how the VLE works and the resources, tutorials and webinars which our students have access to. Register for Online VLE Tour here and we shall send you a link to access this.  




If you are under 18 you must be accompanied by a parent or guardian to an open day