The VFX industry is getting big day by day. It’s an infinite and dapper industry with diverse opportunities in the media and entertainment field. The scope and work of VFX are not limited to single VFX Software or anyone’s distinctive tool and plug-in.

If you are passionate about Movies, Animation, or Games and dreaming to make any of these someday soon. we would recommend understanding the whole process of Film and Game making.

As a result, you will be able to choose the perfect study plan for you. Because maximum institute always suggests you learn all the VFX Software. Even some of them are already out of the VFX industry, and most of the professionals are not using them anymore.

Best VFX Software used to create Oscar-winning movies

VFX artists use various types of VFX Software to create a realistic shot. Dozens of Software available and it’s hard to keep up with all of them, even when you’re in the Industry.

So let’s just take a look at, what is the best VFX Software we have. And what we are going to learn and how? And that will decide what you would be going to do within the visual effect industry.

Before moving further, we are expecting that concept of 2D or 3D is pretty clear to you. If not, please visit our blog what is 2D and 3D.

Most Used VFX Software in 3D

Commonly we know as Maya, is an application used to generate 3D animation, modeling, and simulation for use in Film, TV Series, Games, and Architecture.

VFX Software used to create Oscar winning movies- Maya
Image Source | Google Image

Autodesk Maya is an award-winning VFX Software that is very and used in post-production for movies like The Jungle Book, The Lion King, Avatar, and many more. Almost all big studios are having Maya in their pipeline to fulfill The VFX industry requirement and standard.

In general, Maya can run on Windows, Mac, or Linux operating platforms depending on the premium membership. Before purchasing a premium membership, check whether your machine meets the technical requirement.

Houdini is a 3D animation software and most commonly used in FX departments for the creation of visual effects in the film, tv series, and games.

Image Source | Google Image

Major VFX companies use Houdini, because unlike, other 3D animation software. Houdini uses a node-based procedural workflow that makes it easy to explore iterations as you refine your work. Programs like Maya or Blender store changes in a user history which makes it difficult to return to a previous version of your work.

Houdini can run on Windows, Mac, or Linux operating platforms. and Houdini Apprentice is a free version available for students. Before download Houdini Apprentice, check whether your machine meets the technical requirement.

Mari is the software that is being used in production companies like Framestore, MPC, and Cinesite for Texturing, 3D painting.

VFX Software used to create Oscar-winning movies - Mari
Image Source | Google Image

Using Mari, artists are able to do a 3D painting without limits, as well as combining the power and performance to handle even the most complex assets with artist-friendly 3D paint tools, that make the most of your creativity. The best part of this VFX software is that it comes with a production-ready pipeline.

This software can run on Windows, Mac, or Linux operating platforms as well as you can give it try on the trial version. but don’t forget to check Software technical requirements before downloading the trial version.

It’s a 2D and 3D modeling software, whose features include customizing brushes to shape, texture, and paint visual clay. ZBrush is used for creating “high-resolution” models for movies, games, and animations, by companies ranging from ILM and Weta Digital to Epic Games and Electronic Arts.

VFX Software used to create Oscar winning movies- Maya - Houdini
Image Source | Google Image

Uniquely, ZBrush is an art tool created by artists, for artists. Moreover, It allows artists to create models and illustrations limited only by your imagination, at a speed that support you to stand out in today’s fast-paced industry.

ZBrush can run on Windows, Mac, or Linux operating platforms as well as you can give it try on the 45 days trial version. but don’t forget to check Software technical requirements before downloading the trial version.

3Ds Max intensively used by video game developers, many TV commercial studios, and architectural visualization studios.

VFX Software used to create Oscar-winning movies - Autodesk_3ds_Max
Image Source | Google Image

Max can only run on Windows depending on the premium membership. Before purchasing a premium membership, check whether your machine meets the technical requirement.

Bulgarian Chaos Group developed V-Ray in 1997. it’s a rendering plugin for most of the common 3d software like 3DS Max, C4D, SketchUp, and Rhino.

VFX Software used to create Oscar-winning movies - Autodesk_3ds_Max
Image Source | Google Image

V-Ray’s features mainly aim at creating photorealistic images, together with improving rendering speed. Media, Games, product design, and architecture industries use it for visualizations and computer graphics.

Visit the chaosgroup.com for the full list of supported 3D software.

An advanced Monte Carlo ray tracing renderer, built to stand up to the demands of VFX and animation production. In fact, Arnold was the primary renderer on dozens of films from Monster House and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs to Pacific Rim and Gravity.

VFX Software used to create Oscar-winning movies - arnold
Image Source | Google Image

Originally co-developed with Sony Pictures Imageworks and now their main renderer. Over 300 studios use worldwide including ILM, Framestore, MPC, The Mill, and Digic Pictures.

Arnold offers a powerful, yet easy-to-use rendering experience that delivers beautiful and predictable results, and lets Artists focus on being creative, rather than spending hours going through settings.

Available as a standalone renderer on Linux, Windows, and Mac OS X, with supported plug-ins for Maya, 3ds Max, Houdini, Cinema 4D, and Katana. It is the built-in interactive renderer for Maya and 3ds Max.

Most Used VFX Software in 2D

NUKE is a node-based digital compositing and visual effects application first developed by Digital Domain. Currently, almost all major visual effects studios are using this VFX Software to make photorealistic shots.

Image Source | Foundry Nuke

Nuke has many features that were not available in any other software earlier. It is a combo with all the advanced features like 3D tracking, color corrections, and basic modeling tools. Moreover, it’s a very user-friendly VFX software.

in addition to other advantages, Nuke can run on Windows, Mac, or Linux operating platforms, and it is also depending on premium membership. However, A Non-commercial version of Nuke is also available which has some license restrictions. To know more about Non- commercial version, Please visit the official FAQ page.

Academy and Emmy Award-Winning VFX Software Silhouette is a best-in-class, delivering the industry’s most robust non-destructive paint and roto tools to feature film and visual effects teams.

VFX Software used to create Oscar-winning movies - Silhouette
Image Source | Google Image

Academy and Emmy Award-Winning VFX Software Silhouette is a best-in-class, delivering the industry’s most robust non-destructive paint and roto tools to feature film and visual effects teams.

Silhouette has come across several updates and improved capabilities expediting roto, paint, and many other features that regularly come to use in the VFX Industry across the globe. Silhouette has made its mark on Hollywood’s biggest film and TV shows including Avatar, Black Panther, Avengers: End Game, Game of Thrones, and many more.

Furthermore, Silhouette can run on Windows, Mac, or Linux operating platforms, and it is also depending on premium membership. To know more about the Silhouette, please visit the official Boris FX site.

Although Photoshop is a photo-editing, image creation, and graphic design software but still widely used in many VFX studios.

VFX Software used to create Oscar-winning movies - photoshop
Image Source | Google Image

The software was originally developed by Thomas and John Knoll in 1988, Since then it is in the media industry for many image editing features for raster (pixel-based) images as well as vector graphics.

All of Adobe’s software can run on Windows, Mac operating platforms, and all depends on premium subscriptions. Please visit the official Adobe site to learn more about adobe Products.

Adobe After Effects is a digital visual effect, motion graphics, and application compositing developed by Adobe Systems.

VFX Software used to create Oscar-winning movies - ae
Image Source | Google Image

Even though Maximum VFX Studios already shifted to Node-Based compositing Softwares, it is still in use for Motion Graphics and Television Production. In addition, after-effects can be used for tracking, compositing, and animation.

All of Adobe’s software can run on Windows, Mac operating platforms, and all depends on premium subscriptions. Please visit the official Adobe site to learn more about adobe Products.

Adobe Premiere is an NLE (nonlinear editor) with the main function of editing video clips together in a sequence and it’s an industry-leading video editing software for film, TV, and the web.

Image Source | Google Image

However, this is the program that most beginners open to create a simple video with multiple clips and music, Moreover It’s incredibly scalable — easy to use for beginners, and still powerful enough for a master editor. It’s got just about everything you need to complete a professional video: a clip editor, color correction tools, and audio programs.

All of Adobe’s software can run on Windows, Mac operating platforms, and all depends on premium subscriptions. Please visit the official Adobe site to learn more about adobe Products.

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About the Author

Arun Sharma

Founder & Editor

I am a VFX Artist and have been working in the VFX industry since 2010. Most recently, I have worked in 1917 and The Lion King movies. The artistic drive and the technical challenges of an artist are a perfect fit for me. I love expanding my knowledge as well as helping other colleagues.

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