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Visual Effects Bootcamp

GDC 2018 Content. GDC 2019 coming soon.

The discipline of visual effects has emerged as one of the driving forces in game development. Visual effects tie together game experiences, breathe life into real time rendered worlds, and provide an all-important final layer of visual polish. What started as a few simple "tools of the trade" like flipbooks and additively blended sprites, has grown into a full-fledged art all its own involving subtle and precise mixtures of shaders, lighting, particles, materials, models and animation.

As this craft matures, it has become harder to ignore the absence of shared information, books, tutorials and resources for newcomers to the field and for veterans trying to push the boundaries of what's possible.

In this tutorial, a group of experienced visual effects artists will share their best tips, tricks, and inspiration in a day designed to help overcome those limitations and elevate visual effects to a new level.

Also, explosions. Lots and lots of explosions.

Visual Effects Bootcamp takes place on Tuesday, March 20, 2018. Seating is on a first-come, first served basis.

View all Visual Effects Bootcamp sessions

Featured Sessions

All Access, GDC Conference + Summits, or GDC Summits Pass required.

Visual Effects Bootcamp: How VR is Going to Break All the Rules in VFX
Shen-Ming Spurgeon (Drifter Entertainment)
Wyeth Johnson (Epic Games)
This talk is an introduction to content development from the point of view of a visual effects artist. It will explore what real-time VFX looks like in a VR environment, sharing the transition and experience to VR development, and discuss the limitations, sacrifices, and ultimately, the collaboration necessary to achieve success while working in VR.
Visual Effects Bootcamp: Autonomy in Real-Time Effects: Artist Driven Tools and Techniques for Large Scale Production
Bill Kladis (Epic Games)
Today's AAA game requires not only increased visual quality and fidelity for the player, but the role of the VFX artist in many studios continues to spread across artistic and technical disciplines. Using Epic Games' 'Fortnite' as a backdrop, this session will analyze several large scale problems that are tackled by one person using blueprints, materials, particles, and a large set of parameters. This talk will focus heavily on technical concepts and principles, and introduce viewers to basic vector algebra, trigonometry, and other mathematical concepts relevant to FX artists to open the doors to any custom setup desired.
Visual Effects Bootcamp: Thinking Process of Beautiful Design
Ryan Woodward (Riot Games)
Mastered by mother nature, beautiful design is a subjective goal that most VFX hope to achieve. Riot Games Senior Artist, Ryan Woodward, brings applicable context from his early pencil/paper animation years, breaks down fundamental design principles and applies them with the simplistic thinking of a 2D animator. With thoughtful design, musical timing and a dash of personal aesthetics, VFX can deliver a peculiar emotional response that can fill the audience with unexpected wonder and intrigue.
Visual Effects Bootcamp: Zip! Thwack! Ping! Animation Principles of VFX
Michael Lyndon (SideFX)
In this talk, Senior Technical Artist Mike Lyndon will look at the 12 principles of animation as they apply to VFX. You will learn the high level principles and then see how to use these ideas in creating better VFX for different styles of games. Expect a lot of tips and tricks to help improve your VFX and get a better understanding of the thought process behind designing a solid effect. This talk is software agnostic and focuses on the why behind the numbers and sliders that artists can sometimes get lost in.

Visual Effects Bootcamp Organizers

Fred Hooper
Fred Hooper
Fred Hooper is currently at Nvidia as a Lead Visual Effects Artist working on various projects in real time. He has been in the video game industry making art and effects for games for over sixteen years. He's the founder of Gentleman Fred FX, creating visual effects assets for the Unreal Marketplace. He's spoken at GDC on game feedback in effects with Free Reign: Building Visual Effects for Player Agency in Just Cause 3 and on effects concepts in the VFX Bootcamp: Build a Better Explosion. Released titles include Just Cause 3, Homefront, Singularity, Wolfenstein, Quake 4, X-Men Legends, Star Wars Jedi Knight 2, Soldier of Fortune 2 as well as numerous effects packs.

GDC Tutorials offer a full day of in-depth information and cover a range of game development disciplines on Monday and Tuesday, March 19-20, 2018. View all GDC Tutorials on Session Scheduler.

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