Last week on #MoChat we talked about #vfxprotest and how that affects us in the motion design industry. It’s clear there are several similarities between the two industries (and even some cross-over), though at a seemingly smaller scale.
Several people were familiar with the issues facing VFX, though many didn’t know how bad it was until recently. Studios going bankrupt seem to be how most people started learning about it. Employment seems to be the main similarity facing a lot of people. If you’re working on someone else’s equipment, in their space, under their direction, you should be classified as an employee. Unpaid overtime is another issue, which is related to employment status, though not entirely. It can vary by state, but even if you are salaried, you might be entitled to overtime pay. (No, you are probably not exempt as a “computer specialist”.) Several people also cited lack of benefits.
Along the lines of pay/compensation, flat/fixed bids are also an issue. It’s up to the individual and/or company, but unless limitations of the bid are clearly laid out ahead of time, it can quickly become a runaway process. Limiting number of revisions and time, as well as clear communication seem to be the suggested remedies for this problem.
Communication in general is something that can help everyone in client situations. A lot of people are working direct for clients. Often times, the clients just aren’t that familiar (if at all) with the process of motion design/vfx/post. It’s up to us to educate them. In the long run, this could fix a lot of things.
There’s not much we can really do for our fellow VFX professionals directly. But we can continue to show them support. Just browse the transcript below. That’s a lot of green there.