Instructor/Mentor Photo

Conrad Olson

Visual Effects Compositor


My uncle was an art director for TV commercials in Sydney, Australia. After spending some time staying with him during my travels, the idea of working in the media industry became a realistic option in my head.

While I was in Sydney, my uncle asked me to help him buy his first computer. He wanted a Mac because everyone he worked with used Macs. This was at the time that Apple had just launched their first Power Books and Final Cut Pro. Their marketing was all about shooting DV footage on your camcorder and transferring with Firewire to your laptop to edit it. I was completely sucked in by it.

When I got back to the UK, I went to Nottingham University to study physics. I needed a computer, so I bought a new Power Mac, which was also my first DVD player. I struggled with the physics and spend most of my first year at university messing around with a camcorder, iMovie and Final Cut Pro, and watching every behind-the-scenes feature on every DVD I could find.

I failed my first year of physics, so went to the the other university in town, Nottingham Trent, to study multimedia.

I always thought I would become an editor. But over time I learned more and more After Effects. At some point, I realized that I had more experience with graphics and VFX than I did with editing. That’s when I decided to quit my motion graphics job and go to Escape Studios to learn the skills needed to get me into feature film compositing.

My first feature film job was in the paint and roto department at Framestore in London, working on Where The Wild Things Are in 2008.

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