Compositor (VFX)

Compositing
Senior-level

Compositors create the final image of a frame, shot or VFX sequence.

What does a compositor do?

Compositors create the final image of a frame, shot or VFX sequence. They take all the different digital materials used (assets), such as computer-generated (CG) images, live action footage and matte paintings, and combine them to appear as one cohesive image and shot.

Compositors consider visual aspects of a scene. Realistic lighting is a key one of these. Anything caused by light hitting a lens is a compositor’s responsibility. They relight in order to improve the look of the image.

Compositors do ‘chroma keying’ (also just called keying). This is where they select a specific part of an image that has a distinct colour or lighting and extract it to be used elsewhere. This method is commonly used with ‘green screen’ or ‘blue screen’ footage, where a subject has been shot in front of a singularly green or blue background, in order to be able to place the subject in a different setting or environment later, in post-production.

Compositors work as the last part of a VFX 'pipeline’ (the name given to the VFX production process). They can be employed by VFX studios or work as freelancers.

What’s a compositor good at?

  • A good eye: recognise what makes an image appear realistic in terms of light, colour, composition and perspective
  • Knowledge of photography: understand cameras, cinematography and how films are made
  • Knowledge of compositing programs: be adept at using relevant programs such as After Effects, Blackmagic Fusion, Houdini, Maya, Nuke and Photoshop
  • Collaboration: be able to work with other VFX artists, use each other’s resources effectively and efficiently
  • Working to deadlines: work within given time frames, be able to complete work under pressure

Find this job on Moonworkers

Find your next job from top companies through Moonworkers app. Download the app from your app store, sign up, create your work profile, upload your resume, and will match your profile with exciting projects.

Download the app