SCOTT SQUIRES is a visual effects supervisor and director. His first film project was Close Encounters of the Third Kind, where he developed the Cloud Tank Effect. In 1979 Squires, Hoyt Yeatman, Rocco Gioffre, Fred Iguchi, Tom Hollister and Bob Hollister co-founded Dream Quest Images, a visual effects house, which was later purchased by Disney. Squires was president of Dream Quest and left in 1985 to work for Industrial Light and Magic. Squires worked as visual effects supervisor and commercial director at ILM for 20 years and is now a freelance director and visual effects supervisor. While at ILM, Squires received an Academy Technical Award for Input Scanning and received Academy Award nominations for, The Mask, Dragonheart, and Star Wars: The Phantom Menace.






30 thoughts on “SEPT 9- SCOTT SQUIRES

  1. Evan Tedlock says:

    Scotts presentation was full of visual effects information. His list of credits is impressive and daunting. While I am personally not inclined to become a VFX artist there were a few points that I found interesting and intriguing. Firstly, the idea of interactivity with computer generated elements in order to totally pull off the effect. It seems that our imaginations are eager to believe what we see. This plays to the advantage of the visual effects artist in that they just have to make their shots believable enough that the mind will buy it. Scott mentioned that he would take every opportunity to have the actors interact with the elements to make them feel more real, for instance in Dragonheart where the actor leans on the dragon’s shoulder or pulls real chains off of a generated head. These shots work so well that we forget that we are watching pixels and we believe what we see. Maybe this works so well because as we watch movies we begin to experience the events vicariously through the main characters. Once the main characters interact with objects, other characters and special effects we believe them because the characters do. Another idea that provokes thought for me is the blurring of the line between practical and digital effects. I think that Scott’s view that the shot and story should determine how the effect is achieved is the best way to approach effects filmmaking. Practical effects can bring about a direct presence and detailed quality that may be more time consuming or costly to achieve by digital means. Conversely some shots may just be easier to do with digital, but the flexibility and resources to pursue both practical and digital effects are absolutely necessary. The industry itself seems to be phasing out their practical facilities and only supporting digital pipelines, which may end up hurting them. What I determined as the main thrust of the lecture is that VFX artists need to be flexible and always willing to learn. The industry is tumultuous and seldom do you get an opportunity to just do the same thing for 30 years. Also, government subsidies are kind of a dick move.


  2. Shang Song says:

    The man was surprised me!

    Mr. Scott was involved in the production of a lot of movies, I saw them at childhood. It is incredible that some of the lens is made out of traditional physical effects.
    I used to believe that “visual effects is just a nice clothes, but after reading demonstration of Scott and his years working demo, I think visual effects is a magic of nuclear reactor, he can save a powerful and unconstrained style of play.

    “Respect for the visual effects industry”, they contribution to a warble, serious attitude, and beyond Houdini’s magic skills, let me surprised.

    In China, the visual effects industry is still very young, there is a lot of people can not accept cheap visual effects, I think in addition to the lack of money and time, the lack of professional spirit is also a fatal cause.


  3. Ruchia Masuko says:

    Scott Squires is a such a great visual effect artist and I am so honor to see his presentation.

    This might be my question.

    One of my favorite thing about his work is the close encounter of third kind.

    I loved how he made the clouds with natural materials and this is just so amazing. Some people say that they prefer classic movies than modern movies because they think visual effects are not good with live action movie. Because I think some of live action visual effects are more memorable than computer visual effects.

    I am thinking because the live action visual effects and computer graphics has a bit differences between which effects our brain to believe it is real or not. I want to know what is that.

    All of the Scott’s works are so beautiful and incredible.


  4. Yu Yu says:

    I love to watch the making of from old movies. At that time, people have to make without computers. They have to find lots of ways to make the scene look realistic. The cloud making sink was really a great invention! You really need to be full of imagination to find out how similar between the cloud in the sky and the white painting spread in the water. In the old times, people were stunned by the handmade visual effect and wonder how the artist did those works. But as time goes by, those secrets were revealed one by one, and the audience were more difficult to be satisfied.

    Even the visual effect artists have the help of computers, and the art pieces are almost perfect, the audience are still harder and harder to be pleased. People are more picky now, and can always tell the flaw in others works. Of course, it is much easier to be picky. The visual effect artists are the people who make the movies complete. They work hard behind the scene, solving problems and make the crazy plot happen. One day, the technology will lead us to another level, and people will be hard to tell which is the real shot and which was made by the visual effect. And the visual effect artists are exactly the ones we should thank for, for every single wonderful scene we enjoyed.


  5. Kun Xia says:

    I am very appreciate Scott Squires’s presentation. It was very attractive and he expressed very important points. Visual effect was used to describe any imagery created, altered, or enhanced for a film or other moving media that cannot be accomplished during live-action shooting. Much of the art of visual effects takes place in post-production, after primary image capture is complete. Visual effects also can be added to live-action, captured through techniques such as matte painting; rear- and front-screen projection; miniature or forced perspective sets; computer graphic objects, characters, and environments; and composting of images recorded in any number of ways. One point Scott state out was visual effect artists should have problem solving ability, especially when they facing difficulties when they deal with work, they should be able to figure the way out by themselves.
    Scott also talked the downhill of visual effects industry, much of the work is ultimately freelance. People may get a staff job at an effects facility but a sizable number of people are hired on a project-by-project basis. Even with the expanding need for content, the number of jobs available is less than the number of people trying to break in. There a very limited number of jobs.


  6. Erik Dumas says:

    Although I don’t have any plans to go into the VFX industry as of this moment, I have a huge appreciation for the effort that goes into making all the movies we love look great. It’s almost impossible to imagine a major film being produced nowadays without some form of VFX, whether it’s digital or practical, and I find it incredibly interesting to hear what kind of methods and techniques were used. It’s almost like magic, really.

    Recently, there seems to be a trend in the public’s perception of films that CG effects are ruining movies. Scott pointed out a couple of points that I think really nail down why people are starting to feel that way. First of all, decreased budgets and time frames for VFX houses to complete their work pushes those companies to put out unpolished effects. i think this has led many movie goers to assume that the poor work they are seeing is the best CG can do and an inherent flaw in CG. When in reality, they are watching innumerable effects in other movies or scenes that are so well done, they don’t even realize that they’re watching an effect. The second major problem is that with modern effects, filmmakers are practically unlimited in what they are able to put on screen. In some films, this has led to an excess of over-the-top action sequences that directors add in simply because they can. CG shouldn’t be blamed for lackluster writing and plot.


  7. HyeonJeong Cho says:

    In my viewpoint, VFX is the core feature of film that makes unreality into reality in its own world. So even though I don’t consider to find a position in VFX industry, I can find very interesting point on the presentation he gave.

    Using puppet and miniature sets to whole 3D work, I just awed how the technology has been developed for decades, and I surprised that how Scott can have been staying in such a changing industry for long time. It must be really challenging to learn new things in short terms. I indeed respect him.

    Sometimes I get scared of the technology because of thought that it might take place of human labours but in some point I’m so glad that the age is moved from pre-digital to digital, that allows us create almost everything we want to express.

    In terms of VFX industry in these days, personally I felt really sad about it because I visited Rhythm & Hues just before it bankrupted. The reality that price competition between VFX studios brings depression of industry is such a tragic.


  8. David Nessl says:

    This seminar was very interesting in that Scott presented both the practical effects from his early career, and the CGI from later films he worked on. Its amazing that VFX artists like Scott are able to adapt so well to changes in the industry. His impressive work on too many legendary films goes to show just how talented he is and I look forward to seeing what he does next. It was really enjoyable to see the process of how certain effects were created. Although, I’m now wondering how I’ll apply for a job in Canada (if I choose to go into VFX), I was encouraged to keep creating my own work.
    The cloud tank that Scott demonstrated allowed us to see behind the curtain, exposing the wizard, or wizards who pulled the strings on effects that made me fear aliens as a child. Each behind the scenes video that he played gave me a realization that we too can make similar effects with what we have. I’m now inspired to become a mad scientist stirring the cauldron of VFX. I’m so inspired after a seminar like this that its frustrating to get back into my cubicle and realize I’m still a beginner.
    I wish that somehow we could bring the VFX industry back to California. This seminar really pinpointed the harsh reality of the film industry and its effects on those of us chasing movie magic. At the same time it makes me try even harder, combing out the cobwebs inside my dusty brain. This kind of seminar was one I won’t forget for a long time. Now I know that the aliens in Close Encounters weren’t real and I can rest easy at night.


  9. Amir Arzanian says:

    Scotts presentation was inspiring for me. He was like telling the story of visual effects through the time. It was really interesting to see how visual effects changed from pre-digital era to digital era and I liked both practical visual effects and CG visual effects so it was intriguing for me to know how the technology in different periods of times help the cinema. About Scott I think his effort in learning new things is admiring. He unbelievably adjust himself with every new technology has come to the industry and even he invented them. In my consideration his career show how consistent one should be about what he or she is doing.
    The visual effects of close encounter was amazing. They had thought about every details and they were so innovative and determined. Shooting in the miniatures and the system that Scott explained for projections was fascinating. I also liked the Dragonheart part. The interaction between humans and the virtual dragon was so excellent. Their struggles and their solutions for them made this film a visual effect class for later films. Although Van Helsing is not my type of movie but watching the making of it was enjoying. Mask was one of my favorite film in terms of visual effects the style and exaggeration had been used in this film make it unique. I wish I could see more behind-the-scene pictures or video from Mask in Scott presentation.


  10. Franklin Okike says:

    Scott’s presentation was awesome.
    It’s pretty interesting and rare to find a physicist who loves the art form of film making, animation, programming and VFX. His invention for generating clouds in a tank is brilliant!!! I was literally amazed because I made one of those years back with a fish tank and milk but seeing the science behind it and controlling how the clouds form and dissipate was amazing!!

    When you look at the films he worked on especially Dragon heart, you begin to appreciate how easy we have it with computers doing the heavy lifting. I found something Scott said pretty gutsy; he said sometimes they don’t know what the outcome will be but they just trust their instincts when filming, not something you can do today.

    If you think about it, in a way we are all effects artists. We are constantly training our eyes and refining our taste to make convincing and appealing images but the current steepness of VFX is alarming and slowly becoming a discouraging field to make a living from.

    I really enjoyed Scott’s presentation and his willingness to show us behind-the-scene footages.

    You know that saying: “Jack of all Trades, Master of none”? Well Scott is a Jack of all Trades, Master of All …. .. …


  11. Mayra Flores says:

    It is remarkable that Scott Squires was able to experience and adapt to the fast changing realm of special effects. The transition from practical to digital was swift and continues to move rapidly with the emergence of all types of technology. However, I fall on the side of preferring practical over digital. I absolutely love miniatures, stop motion, and matte painting. Seeing both the practical and digital side by side in the lecture, it is clear that practical effects are more seamlessly integrated in with the live action. They have a charm and gravity that has not been matched by cgi. Even when they are combined with digital, as was the case in The Mask, practical effects are the link between the physical and the digital.  I see the importance of Dragonheart but I found it to be unwatchable. Perhaps it would have been different if they had gone with a live performance of a Jim Henson puppet. One thing that really stuck out to me was that it almost seems like visual effects took on more work than they had to when they went digital. The textures that are extensively researched and rendered in cgi are inherent to the miniatures and do not take nearly as long to create them. 


  12. fshrimp says:

    I have always been wondering how they made visual effects for films before digital era, and today I finally get the picture of all those great scenes of good old movies are made with simple science and aesthetics. It was nice to see those behind-the-scene pictures which gives in the secrets of the craftsman who brought the movie to life. I really adore the miniatures that were made for Star Wars, with complicated structure and the designed style of lights that give the audience an illusion into the space when watching the film.

    Although I can hardly imagine how the effects made by computer was applied to those films in earlier times, Scott’s presentation did show how technology was progressed. Hollywood movies nowadays can present an imaginary world believable with high-end technology, but it is the style and aesthetics that matters, and VFX artists are truly playing the indispensable role in each movie.


  13. With detailed introduction from Mr. Squires, I can figure out the development of visual effects from past to now. Convenience from technology truly accelerates the evolvement of film production. However, the catalyst of progress in visual effects is the determination toward problem solving. So that putting down roots in in-depth investigation can excavate more possibilities beyond expectations.

    Besides, it is really impressive that the full-size mouth and teeth of dinosaur showed up on the screen and an actor fight within it. I can’t ever imagine that part may take so many collaborative props and effort to complete till Mr. Squires explained. At the same time, he also needs to supervise the budget and time investment on each film and to calculate appropriate method to shoot the film, miniature and mapping or motion capture. I truly learned a lot about the practical dimension of handling visual effects from his experiences.


  14. Junyi Xiao says:

    Amazing! Scott’s presentation was really inspiring to me. Last week I complained that the speaker didn’t talk much real stuff, but this week, it’s wonderful.
    Scott’s speech was like some kind of timeline for the whole VFX industry from the none-digital age to nowadays. Especially for the early part, without powerful PC, they made models, painted on the films, invent some devices..All they did were full of imagination and creativity. Some times people blames their film’s poor VFX to technical things, however it’s more about creativity to me. When Scott did Star Wars, the computer they use is less powerful than a iPhone, but they still can make such a master piece.
    In short, thanks Scott for his wonderful speech.


  15. Yijie Li says:

    After all these years’ going in for visual effects, Scott Squires still has a young, courageous heart in adapting, learning and exploring this realm. And as a physicist, it is quite amazing to follow Scott’s trait in the film making industry. I am stunned by his practical period when he was generating the heavy clouds in a tank and making a huge alien mother ship with those light effects. Even those effects are aged but they are still intriguing to me in these inundated digital effects days. Scott’s effort which I really admires reveals his dauntless and open spirits back in the original days of visual effects.

    Meanwhile, Scott is pretty practical and objective in pointing out that the path in pursuing visual effects is arduous and that may explains why Scott wrote an article “visual and overtime”. Visual effects really need to learn, not only about the techniques but also about all the physical effects in order to combine them, control them and to convince the audiences.


  16. Yingzong Xin says:

    Scott is a really amazing visual artist, I was surprised by his presentation .There are so many beautiful senses from lots of old movies which I have seen those movies since I was a little child, and today, it still very attractive and incredible to me.
    Even though I personally do not have a plan to become a visual artist in the future, there were some points I think are very interesting . First of all, in the initial stage of Scott’s works, the visual effect has not been helped by computer that much, so the visual effect artist can still find a way to accomplished the senses that were not able to or hard to shoot in the live-action by using the materials or methods to built a sense ,and then combining them in the computer . In my opinion ,this is the most interesting part of visual effect, the artist has to be very smart to figure out the similarity between the visual effect part and the live-action part. The other thing is , I found out the development of visual effect is from handmade imitation sense to very magnificent science fiction sense, step to step, then back to the sense there are so realistic that people can hard to tell which is the real shot and which is made by the visual effect. I think this is the real revolution of the film.
    To sum up, no matter people can realize the visual effect in the senses of film or not, visual effect still plays an important role during the film-making. And thanks to Scott, he did show me a beautiful world from his works.


  17. Zhaoyu Zhou says:

    Scott’s Presentation definitely influenced me a lot in terms of the VFX and CGI. His talk not only described the technical aspect of these fields but also discussed the overall industry and its situation which include the current trends of visual effects and CG and the hope in the future. Scott is very practical and objective, his learning and career paths are inspirational to us. Especially I am the one who want to explore into the fields of VFX and CG. The information I got from his talk will significantly help me to improve and find the right way to think, learn, and do.

    Also, his talk tells the truth, and that’s why I think he is objective. Absolutely, VFX industry needs this kind of attitude. Be a doer and thinker. I really appreciate for him to come to gave such a great talk.


  18. Katie Smith says:

    Scott’s presentation both astounded me (his body of work, holy cow!) and gave me a pretty big reality check (“pack your bags, you probably will be working abroad”). I’m glad and thankful for that reality check though, especially when he brought up just how inundated this field is with people looking for work. it reminded me how many students, like myself, are hitting the job market and that it is imperative to keep fresh with what’s going on in the industry, to have an open mind, and to just really work your tail off to get out there and get where you want to be.

    Regarding his body of work, I loved seeing his early projects and work on them, to his most recent ones. It was incredible seeing how he came up with the technique for those clouds in Close Encounters!! That just blew me away. Here’s the guy standing in front of me, who came up with the technique for crazy ominous clouds; the technique which then was used for movies like ‘Raiders’ and ‘Ghostbusters’, two of my favorite movies.

    As Scott’s career continued and the industry changed, one thing always remained: his use of creative solutions for technical problems. I think that was one of my favorite aspects of his presentation. I loved hearing how he’d come up with these creative, no-computer-required, solutions for certain problems. I really love that he emphasizes that if there’s a way to solve something without the computer, do it that way! It saves money, saves time, and frankly (in my opinion) is just downright cool. It reminded me of the solution for the water cup reacting to the T-Rex in Jurassic Park, and how they rigged up a guitar underneath the dashboard in the jeep. Each time they strummed the guitar, it made that ripple in the cup and was the perfect effect.

    I’ll definitely be taking a look at his website and keeping up to date with what Scott is up to in the industry, and his opinions on what is going on.


  19. Jinyue Wan says:

    Scott Squires is a fantastic artist! He is so good at visual effect. And even when there are so many technique limitation, he still can bring the surreal scene to the real world.

    In my opinion, a film such as Star War, the visual effect is really important. Sometimes even the story of the film is really simple and common, however, with the great visual effect the viewer also can be attracted by the movie. For animation, the visual effect is also a fatal part. An animation film also need the same quality as a live action movie.

    And making the visual effect also need to have some smart trick, like when Scott doing the effect of giant dinosaur, it’s really clever to use the real model and 3d technique in same time. I really learnt a lot on this seminar, thank you!


  20. xiruiliu says:

    Scott’s lecture is amazing. Although I am not a student who always care about the technique to making film, he still expands a new perspective for me to thinking about the technique helping a lot to making the visual staff. Especially, he did a lot of effort to imitating the natural lighting through computer. at the beginning he shows a lot clouds work to us, it is incredible that the effect looks so real and the movement is dramatic and movement.

    the most impressive work that he did that also his favorite project is the Dragonheart, they modeling the dragon and animatic all the performance. as we can see from the making video, they are rending the light and put the dragon in the right place of screen, the most difficult part is the interaction between dragon and human, they solve this problem and made the dragon alive in the film.

    He has an valuable spirtual that make me admire is he is keeping improving his technique and matching the quality of the feature film, I will learning this quality from him and improving myself.


  21. Megan Simon says:

    Scott Squires gave a fantastic talk on his experiences as a visual effects artist, but more importantly he gave an insider perspective on the industry as it stands today. It was humbling to be sitting in a classroom with an industry titan who invented technique after technique used by many movies I grew up admiring such as Close Encounters, Dragon Heart, Star Wars and many more. Even to realize he was the man behind software used by industry professionals for many years was mind blowing.

    I had a chance to talk to Scott after his talk, and he was very prepared to keep things down to earth. The industry is changing. Not entirely in the most constructive of ways. The exciting aspect of the industry was in the problem solving, and discovering what other people managed to come up with on their own projects. For many years it was a profession of great innovation. LA was a true powerhouse that built from the ground up (literally inside a garage at times). Now things are rapidly changing, even more rapid than the pace visual effects seemed to have taken in the past. No longer does it seem CG is taking leaps and bounds forward, but rather analog techniques are either done away with or sampled for the nostalgia of it. The truth is, as Scott pointed out, there is still much efficiency and reason to use hands on techniques such as models. Yet, there is a desire for more fluidity in the decision making for films. Directors want to be able to make drastic changes in post production, which was not always done in the past.

    That impact is felt heavily on visual effects. Not solely on the expectations of their output, but on the business model forming within the movie industry. Subsidies within governments have changed the way the industry works. I am reminded of a talk on NPR I overheard discussing politicians building new stadiums and how inefficient this is economically. Why rebuild a football stadium that can only be used by a small handful of games a year? And yet the teams pressure the states or cities that they will leave if not. So the public unloads millions to build a new structure, leaving the public in the red.

    This not much different than how visual fx subsidies seem to be developing. A state or country may offer tax exempts or subsidies, thinking it will bring the industry to their region to jumpstart their economy, or provide jobs for in-state residents. In truth it merely moves the professionals to a different location, causing many families to have to uproot constantly in the process. These professionals then often still spend their money in different states or countries, leaving little economic boost to the local area. Instead large sums of money are dumped into these exempts or subsidies with little to no gain.

    It has ripped the VFX industry apart in hollywood, causing goliath companies to go bankrupt. The most notable being Rhythm and Blues, who not days before accepting their emmy had to face the reality that their company was bankrupt. Some professionals have moved to vancouver, the UK, newzealand – or some opted to change careers. With different governments competing for the same small selection of feature films, it brings to mind questions on how this will impact future careers. Especially for students like myself who are just beginning their careers as animators. What will the industry offer us in the future? The answer is that it will likely remain in flux, as it has in the past. Be it through economics, new innovation technologies or in ways we can not forsee.


  22. Sequoyah Madison says:

    Scott Squire’s lecture on the visual effects department in relation to the overall condition of the film industry was most informative. His general description of the state of VFX made the more in-depth information, from previous lecturers’, fall into place. In addition, Scott provided a brief history of how visual effects and visual effects artists have changed over the past few decades. From scientist to technician, the early visual effects industry was all about manual problem solving and using physics and illusion to play with the audiences perception. It seems nearly impossible that the human eye can be tricked into believing that streams of salt were used to represent waterfalls in Star Wars: The Phantom Menace. Even more shocking, while re-watching those waterfall clips I still cannot bring myself to accept the waterfalls are actually salt! Perhaps this use of replacement explains why people have been frustrated with fake looking computer generated imagery in the past few years. There are plenty of natural illusions – quite often the brain accidently perceives something other than what is really there – since one eye perceives an objects shadows and surface in three dimensional space differently than the other eye since they have different positions on the face. When looking at a 3D object on the computer, even though the objects shadows and surface textures appear to be 3D as a whole, each eye is sending ultimately the same information (aside from slight change in location on the 2D screen) to the brain and therefore the brain can read that the computer 3D object it is looking at is in fact not 3D. I’m assuming that because there are so many objects humans collect in their brain database for object recognition, we are able to recognize what we have seen in real life even when it is projected on a 2D surface. Still assuming, I suppose the reason salt is not detected when it replaces the waterfalls is because our brain recognizes it as belonging to the real world, and it is accepted as a waterfall from the context of the scene as a whole. I think the compositing of elements was a useful way to cut down on costs while producing real looking visual effects, but we are now embedded in a technological era.

    One of the topics that really resonated with me was how 2D animators were taught to use computer generated software for Dragonheart. It’s no surprise then why it was one of my favorite childhood movies and I wonder how perhaps the 2D animators brought their own skill and their own methods of problem solving into the computer, especially in a time where there really weren’t many preceding norms for how far the3D graphics could be pushed.


  23. Tuo Kan says:

    I am so excited about Scott Squire’s lecture. During his speech, Scott showed us so many clips of his works. There’s some of them that are really memorable for me.

    I am clearly remember that when he talked about how to created the cloud effects in the early ages. They even use the density of liquid to make the layers of liquid. That is very original and very impressing.
    And he said that when they were making the dragon film, they set up a stick to lead the actors eye sight. i feel that is very useful and clever.

    Another impressing thing that as the technology’s improving, Scott is also training himself to learning new techs. The Van Hellsing effects are very good made. They modeled the actors and match the movements with the actors’ faces. That is very taking time and patiences.

    I really enjoy Scott Squire’s lecture. I think that is very inspiring and great. Even he can not continue the job oversea for months, he has already have a great achievement so far.


  24. Jing Huang says:

    I’m astounded at the quantity of the movies Scotts has been involved in. There are a lot of movies I had seen in a very young age, now I have seen the person who behind the screen, how amazing!

    Scotts gave us a fascinating presentation that about visual effects. I’am not good at visual effects things, his works make me feel the visual effects like a magic, and it can make movies much more vivid.

    In his presentation, I learn that visual effects can also make with natural things but not just digital technique. The natural materials has stronger powerful and has much more flexibility in a production of a movie, the results of natural materials sometimes would be unexpected.

    I used to thought that the visual effects are just about technique, there are a few of art sense in visual effects, but Scotts let me know that the visual effects artist also need art sense to make their works with remarkable power.

    The cloud in the close encounter of third kind is impressive that all people in the seminar remembered it. That’s the power of the visual effects making with real natural materials.

    I always confused with the computer technique, and some software make me some trouble that I should spent a lot of time on figuring out these problems. Now I clearly recognize that if I can’t do a good job on computer technique, I can come back to traditional way to achieve the same goal, and I will deserve the same even surprised result. Thank you Scotts!


  25. Joe Stucky says:

    Scott Squires presentation was fantastic! He really has had a full gamut of experience in the FX industry! I know this has been said already but the fact that he was able to come up with the cloud affect was remarkable. Amazing to hear how he did this in person! It was great to hear and see how strong his problem solving skills are and continue to be. I think what is brilliant in what Scott shared is that you need to look at the film situation and judge if you should use CG, Puppets, or Miniatures, because they each have their own strengths. You really need to assess which method is going to best fit the situation.

    Scott has worked on so many great films. A few that he talked about Blade Runner, Hunt for the Red October, and the Mask are films that have always appreciated for different reasons. Blade Runner is just a great film! The marionettes in Red October where cool to see. I really appreciate some of the problem solving struggles that where evident in the Mask. Tex Avery is always a good reference for crazy good timing:)!

    Thank you so much!


  26. Jinzhidu says:

    Such an amazing presentation and artist! Scott must be the person I dreamed to be when I started my CGI study. His works, thoughts and experience all touched my heart. Especially The Mask which is my first love in visual effect film field. I take for granted that The Mask should be one of the most great visual effect film in the world. I was shocked again and again when I was a little boy. Even I didn’t understand what the visual effect is, I still can know what is the difference between this movie and other movies. Now a part of reason that I went into the gate of animation, should be due to Scott’s great works.

    As a outstanding artist, Scott also showed us how to improve ourselves. Form traditional visual effect to the digital visual effect, Scott changed himself perfect. I still remember that one of my mentor taught me that a great artist should grasp the whole process of the development of his field. Scott is the best example to prove this point.


  27. Min Shi says:

    Such a fascinating presentation that about visual effects! Since my undergrad major is production design, I’m kind of know a little bit about FX industry.

    Scott gave us so many specific examples about the making of FX. As we saw from the footage,It is incredible to see how he use the technique for those clouds in Close Encounters ,it is also so impressed that visual effect can be done not only by computer but also manual ways.

    it is really impressive to see that the full-size mouth and teeth of dinosaur showed up on the screen .Which also interesting is that he also talked the downside of FX industry, it is obviously not a stable job, much of the work is freelance. Most of people are hired on a project-by-project basis.


  28. Aya Kashima says:

    His presentation is one of my favorite class in this semester! I really enjoyed how visual effect was made before visual effect technology was developed. These movies remind me my childhood, I was amazed by dragons and other CG creatures in the film. Sometimes I think visual effect in old movie is more realistic than current movie even though the resolution is not good as new movie. I guess one reason for this is they uses more live action footage to make visual effect.
    After studying animation at USC I realize how human’s eye is sensitive to tell the realistic object and fake object in the screen. Until I get lecture from him, I didn’t pay attention much to visual effect, but now I think that visual effect is important character in the film.


  29. mengna Lei says:

    Scott’s presentation is very inspiring and interesting. He introduced us to how the visual effects made in the past time before the digital. I really appreciate he show this to us cause it definitely shows how wise those people creating the effects by their own way. they really have a strong problem solving skill.

    i am not plan to work in visual effects but I feel it is fun to do it to create it in a very abnormal and unexpected way

    even though I am not plan to work on visual effects but I must admit the importance of applying visual effects on films and nowadays how heavy the movies rely on the visual effects. good visual effects really provide us a good experience of watching movie.


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