How Do VFX Artists Make CG Animals?

CGY:“In the world of VFX, there’s two final bosses – Two big challenges that place the most pressure and demand on the VFX artists working on them. Now, one of them you’ve probably heard of – and that’s CGI humanoids – characters like Thanos or Tarkin or the blue people from Avatar – These guys tend to get a lot of coverage in the media these days for all their technical breakthroughs and how hard it is creating a photorealistic human But… There’s also a second huge challenge… that no one really talks about… – and that is: the creation of CG animals. Because under the surface – These guys have almost the exact same same features as a CG humanaid – They’ve got muscles, and tissue and skin that all needs to be very carefully figured out by a massive team of artists. And on top of this, since things like the Lion King remake in 2019 – CG animals have exploded in popularity, to the point where they are filling the same positions narratively as these other CG characters – Now we have walking around, dancing, talking and emoting – and essentially carrying the entire story on their backs. So, As a VFX artist myself, and someone whose found themselves constantly going in and out of working on these CG animals over the last few years – I thought I should shine a spotlight behind the scenes workflows of these animals, and discuss the tremendous amount of work that goes into making them.“

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