Why take this course?
- Save over £500 off this course with our exclusive Autumn offer. Normally £6000, now only £5,490
- Learn real-world VFX production skills and gain industry recognised NUKE training
- Study at home online to master the fundamentals of compositing visual effects
- Access Escape’s unique online learning platform for step by step tutorials
- Brush up your foundation skills with a free online primer course before the course begins
- Interact with your tutors and fellow students through the live online classroom via your own PC or Mac
- Access industry advice and support from our team of experts
- Gain access to aftercare, career support and advice on your CV, showreel and job applications
Who is this course for?
- If you're passionate about a career in this creative industry
- Anyone who needs to balance work / life commitments with part time online learning
- Aspiring VFX artists looking to learn from seasoned industry professionals
- Students and graduate VFX artists preparing for the job market
- Career changers looking to master the art of VFX in their spare time
- Want to know more? Watch this online classroom demo
- Online, mentored – Average 10 hours a week
- 40 Weeks
- Start Dates:
- January 12th 2015
- Payment plan:
- Pay just £500 by 11th December to reserve your place. An additional four instalments to be paid: £490 paid by week 1 and the remaining three instalments of £1500 on weeks 10, 20, and 30
Professional online VFX training
In the visual effects industry, Compositors are the masters of make-believe. Turning their creative flare to making invisible visual effects, their work helps bring all the elements for a scene together and complete the VFX pipeline.
If you've been looking to kick start a new career and master the art of VFX, you can begin the journey by studying compositing for visual effects online. Study remotely and discover what's possible when you learn around a schedule that suits you.
Working inside NUKE, the industry's favourite VFX compositing tool, you'll learn rotoscoping, rig removal, paint prep techniques, colour balance, mastering 2D / planar tracking and how to create detailed keys of a shot. You’ll also work with NUKE's 3D projection system, camera tracking and how to integrate CG render passes into live action backplates.
Our advanced online learning program was developed to mimic our intensive classroom environment. Interact with your tutors and fellow students through the live online classroom via your own PC or Mac, and benefit from the learning potential of a live classroom.
*Please note this course requires access to a 64 bit operating system.
Daniel set out to train in the family business as an Architect. Towards the final semester of his degree, he realised Architecture wasn’t for him, and started to explore a very different career path.
From Australia to Vancouver – Online Compositing for VFX
Ever considered a possible career in VFX? Had a fleeting notion or mindless ponder while watching your favourite movies? What’s stopping you from investigating further?
Daniel Bigaj was in similar position no more than two years ago when finishing a Bachelor’s Degree in Architecture in Adelaide, Australia. Now he’s a VFX Compositor in Vancouver and loving it.
How? It all started with an ambition to work in film – to create new exciting experiences for audiences through a visual medium.
Daniel set out to train in the family business as an Architect. Towards the final semester of his degree, he realised Architecture wasn’t for him, and started to explore the potential of a career he really wanted.
“…during my final semester I tried a digital media subject because I’ve always had an interest in image manipulation, gaming and photography. This course mainly involved creating short animations in 3DS Max, and was the course that got me interested in VFX. Before that, I didn't even think VFX was a viable career path."
Daniel went on to complete a Masters in Digital Media at the University of Adelaide where he was introduced to every step of the VFX pipeline. It was here he realised VFX Compositing was what he wanted to specialise in.
“On completing my Masters, I enrolled on the Online Compositing for VFX Course with Escape Studios and haven't looked back since.”
Taking the plunge
Daniel knew that to break into the VFX industry he needed a killer showreel to impress recruiters.
“A friend of a friend had studied with Escape in London and had a really strong reel coming out of it. So I did some digging and it looked like Escape had the most comprehensive course I could find!”
Daniel worked hard throughout the course, studying in his spare time while holding down a full-time job to cover the course fees. He devoted weekends to his training and always strove to complete project deadlines – an excellent work ethic that is a credit to him in his career as a VFX Artist. This is just one endorsement from a former colleague.
“I worked with Daniel on "The Wolverine". He worked on lots of roto and retouches, did great, precision work and was always helpful. He has no problems with deadlines and is always a team player. I hope I will get to work with him again in the future."
Roland Friedrich; Senior Nuke Compositor at Industrial Light & Magic (ILM)
Excellent praise from a senior artist, and proof at how driven Daniel has been in his career so far.
The online learning experience
Our student base is global and Daniel is a great example of how you can be on the other side of the world, in a completely different time zone and graduate with the professional skills you need to secure a job in the industry.
“Every week I was provided with all the information I would need to complete my course projects, something I was incredibly happy with – a very different experience to my University education. I never needed to Google how to do something for my projects.”
Of course this professional online course is demanding and can be a steep learning curve for some. Daniel had some existing skills that made the process a little more manageable.
“Anything detail oriented or on computers has always come very naturally to me so it's understandable that some others struggled a bit with the course while it was pretty laid back for me. It progressed at a perfect pace that I could keep up with while working full-time. I would devote weekends to my study and always managed to complete all my projects on time!”
First job in the VFX industry
Breaking into the VFX industry is all about being proactive, and Daniel was still studying the course when he approached his first employer Rising Sun Pictures (RSP).
“Once I had a decent reel, I started applying for positions in Australia. I had good feedback from the recruiters at RSP who said I was lacking just that tiny bit of industry experience for them to hire me. So they invited me to the beta testing of a roto/paint course they now run. My education with Escape put me ahead of the other students involved right from the start and I excelled well beyond expectations. A month or so later I was hired for a roto/paint position working on “The Wolverine” and “The Great Gatsby”, while still finishing the course at Escape."
Daniel now has 10 feature films under his belt; namely "The Wolverine", "The Great Gatsby", "Seventh Son", "I, Frankenstein", "Godzilla" and "Maleficent".
“The course has taught me absolutely everything I know about compositing in Nuke. Before the course all I knew was basic compositing techniques in After Effects. So it hasn't just helped me in my career, the course has made my career. Without it I wouldn't have a career.”
Working around the world
Daniel has moved to Vancouver for work and to follow his passion for snowboarding. Fortunately Vancouver had plenty of both.
“The reality of a career in VFX is that you need to be willing to travel to where the work is – unless you’re fortunate enough to be local to an area with a lot of VFX work. VFX definitely gives you the ability to travel while working. I love to travel anyway and I knew I would have to for a career in VFX going in.”
Daniel continues to add to his already impressive portfolio of work, and we look forward to seeing where his career takes him in the future.
“I love that my work in VFX can help people experience the impossible."
Escapee Leonardo Sierra speaks to us regarding his career in VFX so far.
NAME: Leo Sierra
COMPANY: Catmandú/100 Bares, as Stereo Digital Compositor on an animated movie by Oscar winning director, Juan Jose Campanella.
COURSE STUDIED: Compositing for Visual Effects (Online)
FAVOURITE MOVIE ONE LINER: Definitely has to be… “Say hello to my little friend.” from Scarface
WHY VFX: Because my life is surrounded by things related to VFX, I consider myself a bit of a Geek; I love video games, animated TV series and sci-fi movies. Since I discovered 3D Animation and Digital Compositing, watching films like Star Wars or Terminator changed my career path, and made me decide “I want to be part of that”, I wanted to be one of those amazing artists who create breath taking images and effects. Now I'm beginning my path As digital compositor and I'm super happy to be living my dream.
PROJECTS: My favourite project thus far, is definitely the project I'm working on currently, "Foosball" ("Metegol" in Spanish). It's the first time that I’ve worked on a feature animation Film, it’s really quite amazing to work with so many talented artists and be a part of such a big project. At the end of the day it’s so rewarding to look back and see all that you've done, but much more exciting is being able to look ahead at the prospect of great things that are yet to be discovered.
ADVICE: I think that the best advice is: Study, be passionate and love what you do! You’re going to have to face lots and lots of challenges, (every day!) but it’s up to you to find the answers. Nowadays it’s really easy get information about any topic; there are amazing schools with talented teachers (Escape is proof of that). Read a lot too, there are many books with plenty of information available. Watch lots of movies, short films, videos and play videogames (something I find, is the best source of inspiration) and finally, ask other artists for their opinions, there are amazing people out there who are more than happy to share their knowledge.
To conclude, all you need is love for your work, and the desire to be prepared, I assure you that with time and effort you will see progress!
Escapee Catarina Ferreira speaks to us regarding her recent appointment at Cinesite
NAME: Catarina Ferreira
FAVOURITE MOVIE ONE LINER: "Someday my dream will come? One night you will wake up and discover it never happened. It’s all turned around on you. It never will. Suddenly you are old. It didn't happen, and it never will, because you were never going to do it anyway." – Collateral.
PROJECTS: I see all the projects that I've worked on as great experiences. There is always something to take out from each, no matter how exciting the work itself is. Learning something new, improving my skills and getting to know new people are the best parts of it. I quite enjoyed working on "Snow White and the Huntsman" at Blue Bolt as roto/prep artist - I learned a lot every day. Two years after completing the Compositing Professional course at Escape Studios I'm finally having the opportunity to do some compositing work at Cinesite for “300: Rise of an Empire” and I'm loving it. It's a been great reminder of why I chose to work in this industry.
WHY VFX: In the last year of my degree in Communication Design, I got into motion graphics. Started working with After Effects and one thing came to another. I got my first job in an Architecture Visualization company as motion grapher and that title also included doing some compositing work. I think it was a good starting point, from here my passion for comping grew day by day.
I always had some kind of fascination with watching the special features on DVD's, the "making of", the replacement of green screens, the "before/after" visual effects... It´s like making magic, deceiving people and making the impossible possible.
Being a part of great features was something I thought was unachievable, until I heard about Escape Studios. So with 3 years of work experience in Portugal I decided to step back and start all over again in London. It was a huge decision and a big investment to do the course, sure, but it was the best thing I've done. The unachievable became achievable and now the dream is happening.
ADVICE: Try to be creative on your show reel, accept criticism and grow with it, and don't give up if someone tells you it's impossible or too difficult.
It's VFX, nothing is impossible; it's just a matter of time and hard work
Earlier this month we were brimming with pride as we waved farewell to our in-house ‘2D genius’ and all-round helluva guy, Simon Richardson, who has moved onto pastures new as a Junior NUKE Artist...
COMPANY: Junior NUKE Artist at The Mill
FAVOURITE MOVIE ONE LINER: “What we do in life echoes in eternity.” Gladiator
BEST PROJECT YOU’VE WORKED ON: It’s hard to pick just one; every project has its own merits and challenges. The Heineken ‘Bond’ music video was pretty cool—we got to work on lots of advanced stuff like bluescreen keying, and it was exciting to be part of the buzz surrounding the James Bond franchise.
WHY VFX? When I first watched ‘The Matrix’, I was intrigued by bullet-time, and ended up building my own bullet-time rig as part of my dissertation at University. This led to my interest in post-production, and took me to Escape.
ABOUT: Starting out as an engineering student, Simon was keen for any opportunity to dabble in filmmaking. It was whilst utilising his University’s bullet-time rig that his interest in pursuing a career in the film industry was first sparked, leading him to study one of Escape’s Compositing classes in 2011. Much to our pleasure, he just couldn’t leave, taking up post as one of our esteemed Studio Assistants for over a year.
Always on hand to help out in our Compositing classes, Simon was a true asset to Escape Studios, contributing content for our free online tutorials, and at one point even stepping in to cover one of our tutor’s evening classes. He also contributed a series of posts to the Escape blog, declaring his undying love for NUKE and sharing his wealth of knowledge on the program. Making the most of his 4-hour daily commute to the studio, Simon spent this time testing the portability of NUKE on his MacBook Air.
In terms of how his training at Escape has prepared him for his first VFX role, Simon says, “… it gave me the opportunity to really get to grips with the tools used in the industry, as well as the chance to develop my strengths as an artist, amongst a collective of like-minded individuals.”
ADVICE: Simon’s advice to anyone wanting to get into compositing is to “… try develop an understanding of how life is seen through the eyes of the camera, and to always study composition—even if it’s just going out for a walk and observing what is around you. But overall, the most important thing is a willingness to work hard.”
It brought a tear to the eye to see Simon leave, but everyone at Escape wishes him all the very best for the future—there’s no doubt he’ll make an invaluable addition to the team at The Mill. Huge congratulations to Simon as he steps ever closer towards the career he truly loves.
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.
Upcoming industry speaker
Our next guest speaker will be John Swinnerton of the Peerless Camera Company on October 29th.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org 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.