An interview with VFX/FX artist Emmanouil Bampatsikos


Meet Emmanouil Bampatsikos.  An up and coming VFX/FX artist that you should keep your eye one.  Emmanouil graduated from University of Kent  (Masters of Science / Digital Visual Effects) in 2013 and at his current age of 27yrs old it would seem he is a late bloomer.  Then again, when you look at his show reel, you might just think he did it at the right time for himself.  Check out his show reel below and decide for yourself.

Robert – Did you draw, sculpt or paint prior to getting into digital arts?

Emmanuel – No.  Believe it or not, I didn’t know how to do any of those things prior to pursuing this career.  Just the basics that your parents hang on the refrigerator door even though they’re not sure what it is you drew.

R – Why did you decide to go into the arts of VFX/FX work?

E – It was just my dream to get into the field of creating realistic effects for movies, ads and games and tried hard to achieve my targets. I love watching movies with visual effects, also creating ads and games, Thats why i started learning VFX.

R – For everyone out there who doesn’t know…Can can give us the difference between VFX and FX in short detail?

E – VFX is the general meaning of all the digital visual  artism. Including modeling, animation, texturing, compositing and many others. In all that, one more section is the FX, which means the effects specializing, like smoke, fire, explosions etc.

R – You graduated from University of Kent  (Digital Visual Effects) in 2013 and after only a year out of school you have already accomplished a lot.  I know that most people that graduate from film schools come to realize that the industry is saturated with film school grads and that breaking into the industry for pay is very difficult and can take a lot of time.  How were you able to get so much work so early?  Is it just that really good VFX/FX artist are in short supply?

E – As for myself, I did a lot to reach this level, especially during my master studies, and every day I’m hunting for more work. I want the different experiences and also I love this field so much. That’s why I can work hard. VFX needs fantasy and dreams and this is want I really like. My brain can’t stop working under these conditions. I didn’t have the chance from my university to get into the VFX houses but I’m doing freelance and have partners all over the world because I found the power to speak to each one without knowing them.

R – What part of VFX/FX work do you find the most challenging?

E – For me the most challenging field is the FX because you have to create realistic phenomenon which are around us and you have to create them as closer to the original.

R – Of all the VFX/FX software out there which is your favorite?

E – My favorite software is Maya from Autodesk, because I started working on it before 2 years and I believe after a long research and experiments to some softwares that is very strong for VFX. Also for effects is very strong and next versions will have more updates.

R – Which is your least favorite?

E – My least favorite is 3Ds Max at the moment, but this is not something standard. According to the needs, maybe I will need also 3Ds Max, which is also very powerful.

R – Which one was the hardest to learn and master?

E – According to my opinion the hardest to learn and master are Maya and Houdini.

R – Do you have a particular project that you have already worked on that you find the most  rewarding (not financially but rather personally)?

E – The two projects (My showreel and The video for the Kazakhstani museum), I sent you are for me and according to many opinions, the most rewarding, Also I’m working for a short film in US, with a team around the world and with target to get the short film to famous festivals.

R – Where do you hope to be in your career down the road?  Working solely as a freelancer or working with someone like Pixar?

E – My target is to work for some years in a big studio like Pixar, MPC, DNeg, Cinesite, Dreamworks, ILM etc. and then do freelancing for them remotely. This is my dream and my target. As for the moment I’m quite happy working as freelancer for so many stuff and keep myself so busy.

R – Do you have any advice to anyone who is considering this as a career path?

E – I’m advising all the people to follow their dreams and not what they have to do to make money or if they have particular jobs in their country. This is my advice in general. So for the field I believe that freelancing needs a lot of work until reaching a point and have so many customers and then have a good salary. But I believe that all should have an experience from a big studio. At least for some years.

All the very best to you all ~ R

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