This story originally appeared on the Cinefex blog on 9/8/2015 and is republished here with permission. Learn more about Cinefex magazine here.
Writing on this blog a little over a year ago, I asked a panel of visual effects experts the following question: What cutting-edge technique or technology is getting you excited about the future of visual effects?
The question prompted some fascinating responses, which you can read in my article I is for Innovation. Collectively, they provide a snapshot of the world of VFX as seen by a range of industry professionals in July 2014. It's a snapshot that's now a year out of date. That's the thing with cutting edges – the darn things just keep on cutting.
That's why I've decided to revisit the topic, one year on. Because innovation doesn't go away. In fact, the desire to create something new appears to be hard-wired into the mind of the visual effects artist. And the industry itself, like so many others, is constantly evolving.
This time around, I wanted to hear not only about the latest techniques and technologies, but also the latest business trends. So I stripped my original question back to its simplest possible form: What's new in VFX? How did our panel of experts respond? Let's find out!
Michele Sciolette, Head of VFX Technology, Cinesite
There is a lot of expectation that 2016 will be the year when immersive technologies such as virtual and augmented reality will become mainstream. Current-generation devices have many limitations, but clearly show the potential for truly immersive experiences. This will inevitably drive demand for new types of entertainment. I expect that the ability to support and create content for immersive experiences will become a common task for visual effects houses in the relatively near future.
Aruna Inversin, CG/VR Supervisor, Digital Domain
With true virtual reality around the corner, content creators and studios are already building their teams and their pipelines to take advantage of this next wave of new immersive experiences, the likes of which people have never seen. Using positional tracking, high fidelity screens and haptic (touch-sensitive) inputs, we'll see a surge in consumer consumption that hasn't be matched since the invention of the television.