Sokratis Synitos

Why the creative industries?

I have a mixed background both technical and creative. I first studied computer engineering - working as a web developer helped me to partially fund my film studies as cinema has always been a big love of mine. Being immersed in the surrealistic landscapes of Baron Munchaussen and Pan’s Labyrinth led me to look up visual effects. I studied at Escape Studios and then got in the VFX industry where my mixed background is considered an asset. Today, I have six years of experience in the VFX industry and more recently I have joined One of Us.

What are you currently doing?

I work as a Digital Compositor and I also develop Python tools as and when my workload permits. Staying with a company, between projects, is a good time to reflect on what kind of tools would have helped to have on the completed project and which ones would be needed in a new one. 

Starting on a new project and being involved from the early stages is something that I deeply enjoy. You might be asked to get involved in tool developing, and you may have the chance to set the look on some aspects of the final product. Being involved with talented people and constantly learning from them is a sure path to progress in the industry. I also feel really proud of when I share new knowledge with others. This can happen even with people who have worked in the industry longer than myself as there is always something new to learn.

What’s your favourite movie and why?

My favourite movie of all time is the Dead Poets Society because the story itself stood with me since the first time I watched it. It’s considered an old movie but at the same time it’s so contemporary, the issues that are portrayed are still happening in our society. But talking on a VFX point of view, I really have to say any of the Harry Potter films, its because of Harry Potter that I am where I am now. When I was a little kid I used to watch them a lot and I remember thinking to myself, ‘I want to be able to do this!’. So yeah, there are two answers to this question.

What work are you most proud of working on and what is your most notable achievement?

I have worked on both films and TV shows and on a few commercials. I was really proud to be part of the teams working for Spectre and Avengers: Endgame. If I had to pick a personal favourite though, that would be Altered Carbon, a project that I had worked on while on DNeg TV. That was one of the cases of being involved in the early stages of a TV show, which is something that I do love as mentioned previously. There were both artistic and technical challenges on this project and learned a ton. As this TV show came from a book, I felt special when in a promo video the author of the book looked at one of the opening shots that I composited and commented how much it looked like his vision. 

How did you get into the industry and is there anything you would have done differently?

Before my first job and after my studies at Escape Studios I got involved in two short films. Those were Leonard in Slow Motion and The Nostalgist. I got my first roto and cleanup shots from these two projects and that helped me to get something new and fresh for my showreel. I was lucky that a studio tour of Peerless that happened through Escape Studios coincide with their need of roto artists.

What is your advice for those considering entering the industry?

Building your showreel with a variety of projects is the best way to attract attention. Aiding people with short films or shooting some plates yourself could help to build that variety. Networking at different events helps you to get in touch with people in the industry. I tried different ones myself; I volunteered at The VFX Festival, joined a few VES events and travelled to Bournemouth where they were holding a career hub. It’s a small world and definitely a smaller industry so after awhile you get to know people and they get to know you.

What course did you study?

12 week Compositing for VFX 

Networking at different events helps you to get in touch with people in the industry.

Sokratis Synitos