Lighting Technical Director

CG Artist London, United Kingdom


Position at Industrial Light & Magic

Position Summary

Lighting Technical Directors are responsible for producing high-quality CG lighting and rendering for complex shots for high-end photo-realistic visual effects. 

Primary Responsibilities

  • Scrutinise the colours and directions of all light sources in the real-world scene and replicate them in CG.
  • Design and create the lighting and the look of computer generated objects and scenes.
  • Responsible for the final CG scene assembly, lighting and rendering of very complex shots.
  • Works closely with Lighting Supervisors and CG Supervisors to determine the best approach to solving CG challenges and developing the final look.
  • Creates lighting set ups and/or works within current set ups.
  • Creates efficient rendering set ups in order to optimise render farm usage.
  • Stays on schedule and meets set deadlines while maintaining the highest level of work quality.
  • Ensures there is ongoing communication with Production and Leads regarding schedules and deadlines.
  • Helps mentor Junior Artists within the Lighting/Look Dev team

Education / Experience

  • Bachelor’s degree in Computer Graphics or equivalent or previous professional experience in a related field.
  • Experience of real-world lighting and photography.
  • Demonstrable advanced Lighting and Rendering experience within a VFX environment.
  • Previous experience performing shot Look Dev tasks

Required Skills / Competencies

  • Exhibits excellent listening and communication skills, able to receive direction and criticism.
  • Demonstrates an excellent aesthetic eye, anticipates potential problems and uses knowledge of how to use the tools to achieve the desired look.
  • Demonstrates the ability to help and teach more junior-level artists.
  • Demonstrates the ability to prioritise tasks and provide Production / Lead with accurate time estimates on task completion.
  • Demonstrates excellent presentation/communication skills in dailies/shot review by clearly and briefly outlining what has been accomplished and what should be addressed next in a shot.
  • Demonstrates the ability to work within a team environment with minimal supervision to complete a shot.
  • Can write plug-ins, set-up sequences, debug simulations and write set up and Renderman surface shaders with proficiency.
  • Solid compositing ability, can wrangle blue-screen extractions, working knowledge of Nuke.
  • Demonstrates the ability to work with minimal supervision to complete a shot.
  • A thorough understanding of the VFX pipeline from modelling through animation, texturing, rendering and compositing.
  • Ability to pick-up new techniques and the ability to learn new software quickly and easily

Required Technical Skills

  • Knowledge of Katana is essential, Maya an advantage and Zeno beneficial.
  • Knowledge of Python and/or MEL scripting is essential.
  • Shader writing ability is essential.
  • A good knowledge of Nuke or similar compositing package, including how to use layers and passes to tweak a shot after it has been rendered.
  • A strong understanding of Linux based operating systems.
  • Basic knowledge of physically plausible shading techniques.
  • A strong knowledge of lighting techniques and a good understanding of colour-space.
  • Excellent pipeline scripting ability.
  • Excellent knowledge of Renderman and other unbiased rendering systems.
  • Good knowledge of other disciplines within VFX including simulation, modelling and UV mapping, texturing and camera tracking