By IAN FAILES
When Shannan Louis launched a visual effects outfit in Vancouver at the start of this year, she had no idea what challenges her new business venture would bring.
It wasn’t only the challenges of crewing up, gearing up or pitching for work in what is generally considered a tough industry; it was also, of course, battling through the unexpected outbreak of COVID-19. The worldwide coronavirus crisis severely impacted live-action filmmaking and forced VFX studios to have artists work remotely.
But Louis’ new studio, FatBelly VFX, was engineered with a ‘working in the cloud’ approach in mind from the beginning, and that enabled it to adapt quickly to the changes that have swept through the industry. Louis shares FatBelly’s and her own VFX origin story with VFX Voice.
Louis did not start out in the creative industries. She had an earlier career in the non-profit sector before shifting to film and television, “an area that I had always been passionate about,” she says.
It was actually acting that Louis had originally pursued as a potential career, in addition to the areas of producing and directing theater productions. “I had always admired the world of TV and film as a way to create emotions or share a story. Television was definitely a way for me to escape when I was a child. I studied documentary film production in 2013 and continue to have an avid interest and involvement in doc making, particularly editing.”