Creative Mind Podcast Episode 37 – Charmaine Chan Makes It as a VFX Artist in the Real World

“A lot of times I actually tell a lot of the artists on my team to literally turn off your computer step away and go outside. It’s just one of those things where you get so much inspiration by things in the real world.”

“I can literally sit on a bench somewhere and just like stare at the corner of a building and see like how the light just goes across that building throughout the day.  It’s just one of those things that I find very relaxing and being able to just like study how light interacts with a lot of things in real life.”

Light. The basis for film, photography, and the main ingredient in compositing and visual effects. It is no wonder that our guest on this episode of Creative Mind, Charmaine Chan, has spent over 14 years at Industrial Light and Magic.

Today, Charmaine can be found in London working as Lead Compositor for feature films, television, theme park rides, AR/VR, and real time compositing on set for show like Disney’s The Mandalorian, Star Wars Andor, and The Batman. Light is her medium.

“Just being able to capture a moment. when you see that light still it’s like, ’Let’s then deconstruct it. What’s going on in this image?’ So, for me, I constantly refer to what I see out my window because it will always come back to you.”

Working at the crossroads of technology and art Charmaine offers up plenty of great advice to give students and working professionals on what it takes to work as a VFX artist, where virtual sets are headed (and how to take advantage of them) and how to survive as a working compositor.


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