We had the good fortune of connecting with Ran Wang and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Ran, why did you decide to pursue a creative path?
I am always a big lover of anime and movie. I also read many science fiction novels when I was a kid. But working in the film industry is not common in China back in the days. It didn’t occur to me that I can be a visual effects artist until my collage years. My undergraduate study was English literature and I don’t really like it. The idea of taking something I have no passion as my career was torturing me. I was lost and the movies saved me. After watching The Lord of the Rings, my thought was really clear, “I want to do those cool shits in the movie” and here I am.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
Working as a visual effects artist is definitely challenging, you have to keep looking for new shows and learning new technics. It is a life long journey. When I first came to LA, fresh out from school, I really don’t know if I can break in the industry or not. I can’t find anything for a few months until I got an internship from the company who made the software I am using. And from there my career is taking off. I worked on many shows, features and commercials in the past few years. Some of them are pretty high profile like Avengers: Infinity War, Taylor Swift music video and League of Legends cinematics, just to name a few. But to me the most proud experience I have is when I am able to help my colleges to solve some hard problems. Visual effects is an art form usually require a lot of collaborations. It is true that some artist can do everything by him/her self, but most of time people are working as a team and trying to achieve the same goal. When I can help others and making new friends through working with them, it is the happiest thing. During my years of work, I learnt that it is really important to make connection and communicate with others, cause even you are really good at your job, you need to show your work to others and make them know.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
I would definitely take my friend to Getty Center, the architecture is beautiful and it has a nice garden for a short walk. Also I love the art exhibitions there. I wish it can reopen asap. And for eating, I will definitely take my friend to the east part of LA where there are so many authentic Chinese restaurants, those food really makes me feel like home.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
First I want to thank my parents, their selfless support gives me the freedom to chase my dream, even though they have no idea what visual effects means when I told them I want to pursue to be a FX Artist. Then I want to thank the movie – The Lord of the Rings and all other awesome movies, they opened my eyes and planted a seed of visual effects in my heart and continuing fueling me to keep working harder and achieve more in my career. Last but not the least, I want to thank my mentors and colleges, they give me the courage to tackle all kinds of different tasks, whenever I am stuck, I know I can turn to them for inspirations.