Aʙᴏᴜᴛ ᴛʜᴇ Bᴏᴏᴋ
Category: Adult Non-Fiction 18+
Genre: Entertainment Industry, Movie Industry, Arts & Entertainment, Job Hunting & Career Guides, Women & Business, Strategic Business Planning, Computer Graphics
Publisher: Vicki Lau, 376 pages
Publication Date: May 2021
Content Rating: PG Suggested use of the word "bitch" (but spelled as "b..."), one mention of an experience of unwarranted sexual advance through text message solicitation (no images, just text).
From the city of Singapore to working on over twenty Hollywood blockbuster films and TV series such as “The Walking Dead,” “Guardians of the Galaxy,” “Aquaman,” and “War for the Planet of the Apes,” comes one of the first books of its kind in the visual effects (VFX) industry.
With a unique blend of self-help, career strategy, and memoir-like elements, Vicki Lau speaks to the core of what it is like to work behind-the-scenes on some of your favorite Hollywood titles, covering strategies employed in order to maneuver her way into the upper echelons of the industry.
You will learn:
Detailed breakdowns of day-to-day studio activities
How industries and events impact your life and career prospects as a VFX artist
Key strategies and insights on dealing with Hollywood politics
Precise predictions on VFX job displacements and new high-growth skills
Self-clarity on your ambitions in life and what the VFX industry truly offers
Why I Do VFX is a must-have for anyone seriously considering a fulfilling life and career in Hollywood, film, and the arts.
After all, why spend a decade of your life uncovering the truths about this industry when you need only read this book to answer your own question:
Do you really want to do VFX?
Foreword by Leif Einarsson (VFX on "Stuart Little," "X-Men: Days of Future Past," "Spider-Man: Homecoming")
1. What makes your book different from other books about visual effects?
Well, firstly, Why I Do VFX is one of the first books of its kind in the visual effects (VFX) publishing space. You’ll generally find that most books out there about VFX are software or technique-based books on how to perform certain tasks, animate stuff in Autodesk Maya (a 3D software), et cetera, whereas other similar books on VFX go on endlessly about the history and past films of the VFX industry.
Sure, history is important but my book is focused primarily on the present and the future – as well as how to actually kickstart or sustain a career in the industry. You’ll find that history lessons on films from decades ago, while interesting to know, is not going to help you get a job in Hollywood VFX. Since I wrote the book primarily for myself as well, I myself wouldn’t want to waste my time reading about historical facts and information that I can already get the gist of in less than 5 minutes online.
2. What is the most surprising thing you discovered while writing your book?
Well, this may be a good or bad thing depending on your perspective as a writer but I discovered how surprisingly easy (and fast) it was to write a book. I am not going to reveal how long it took to write the book but let’s just say I was genuinely surprised by how easy and fast that part of the process was (with zero compromise on quality). And there I was hearing tales of authors taking years to write one book of a similar length.
3. Tell us about the process for coming up with the cover.
It was an interesting process and I ultimately trusted my designer to come up with the best ideas. Ultimately, the concept was to portray the dichotomy of the VFX industry where, behind the facade of glamor and wonderful Hollywood visuals on screen, is the truth about how the industry really works and functions to keep the machine that is Hollywood alive.
There were many ideas tossed about by me and whilst collaborating with the designer but in the end the designer had the better design that conveyed this dichotomy/dual nature of Hollywood VFX. Hence, you see the split-screen effect on the book cover of one side conveying the “sparkle” of Hollywood, and the other, the more objective and concrete facts about the industry (as portrayed by the unchangeable nature of pixels on the blue side of the cover).
In the end, I just love the look of it – even if no one would actually know the concept behind the design unless they read my answer here.
4. Do you snack while writing? Favorite snack?
The snacks I eat tend to require the use of my hands so I can’t really snack while writing. However, I will say that I am a huge fan of potato chips (you should read the part in the book where I talk about devouring 5 to 10 small bags of Lay’s chips per day whilst working at VFX studios – it was wild).
5. If there is one thing you want readers to remember about you, what would it be?
That I am more than I appear – and so this is book.
So, even if you have zero interest in VFX or Hollywood industries/niches, I am betting you will learn a thing or two about yourself in Why I Do VFX. Just read the foreword by VFX veteran Leif Einarsson to get a prelude and you’ll know what I mean.
That being said, I am also offering private virtual meetups with interested paperback readers every month till the end of the year – so if you do want to meet someone who has worked on your favorite TV shows/movies, feel free to ping me (details in the book).
6. Where can readers find out more about you and your book?
My official website and YouTube channel would be the sources I would go to for updates on myself or the book. You can simply find me as “Vicki Lau” on YouTube/Google – or check out the links/socials attached to this post.
Aʙᴏᴜᴛ ᴛʜᴇ Aᴜᴛʜᴏʀ
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