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What is Visual Effects? (0:12 min.)
Visual effects (VFX) is the process through which imagery is altered, created, or enhanced for live-action media that could not be captured during live-action filming due to it being costly, dangerous, impractical, or impossible to shoot. Visual effects allow for the integration of live-action footage and VFX to create realistic objects, characters and environments.
The three are often used interchangeably but are different in that VFX are created using a combination of live action shots and digital imagery, CGI is anything created digitally, and Special Effects are captured live, without the aid of a computer.
(Computer-generated imagery) is anything that is created digitally within a computer. CG can be incorporated into a VFX shot in a live-action movie (i.e., The dinosaurs in Jurassic World) or used to create a fully CG film (i.e., Toy Story).
Image courtesy of Amaru Zeas
SFX (special effects) are practical effects that are implemented directly on set and captured during the live-action shoot. Examples include prosthetic makeup, props or animatronics.
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Image courtesy of Image Engine
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Image courtesy of Dneg
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Image courtesy of framestore