Janeen discusses collaboration in visual effects and the contributions to her recent project Thor: Ragnarok.
Visual effects is all about collaboration, and I think we do it particularly well here. I was brought onto the Thor crew, for example, to help out on the sequence where the character Odin disintegrates and floats away over the seascape. The sequence turned out to be much more challenging than anticipated, as what was meant to be a simple background replacement, and added FX, turned into almost a complete environment enhancement, sky replacement, adjustments to the extra characters’ positions, as well as the FX of the disintegration. Luckily, because I was brought on to help out towards the end of the show, and the sequence had already been worked on through other shots, lots of that work on the environment was already setup, and I had to simply make it work for my series of shots.
The main work on my shots was integrating the FX work. I enjoy working with elements provided from the FX department here at Image Engine. I find that at Image Engine, collaboration is one of the key facets – something that works well in a company our size – and collaborating with the FX artists is very easy. On a look such as this one – a magical effect – there’s lots of room for direction from the client as we’re not matching to a “realistic” look, so that can prove challenging when we are taken in different directions as the look gets sorted. However, with our flexibility to try different looks both from FX and from comp, after many iterations, we got to a look that satisfied our client and that the crew was happy with as well. Not only do I enjoy collaboration, but I do also enjoy working on magical effects as it’s a fun way to tell a story.