What Is A CGI Pole In 3D Creation? 12 Departments For CGI Pole Making

When learning about making a 3d character, you may once more catch the term CGI. Do you find the exact answer to “What is a CGI Pole?”. CGI stands for Computer-Generated Imagery. It is to create virtual characters, scenes, and effects in movies, games, TV shows, etc. For more detail on CGI, let’s discover the article below!

Examples of CGI Outputs

You can easily catch the CGI outputs in movies. They might be fictional animals, characters, backgrounds, etc. Here are some pictures to help you get clear about the CGI definition as well as what does CGI stand for.

Examples of CGI Outputs
The Martian
Examples of CGI Outputs
Rise Of The Planet Of The Apes

Development of CGI

Development of CGI
A scene applied CGI technology in Gunslinger’s Vision

The history of CGI has been along with the development of film technology since 1950. Here are some remarkable milestones:

  • The 1950s: Alfred Hitchcock created patterns onto animation cels on computers for Vertigo (1958).
  • 1972: Edwin Catmull and Fred Parke released a simple and short 3D graphics, “A Computer Animated Hand.”
  • 1973: Hollywood relayed CGI to develop through the movie “Gunslinger’s Vision.” It demonstrated how robot cowboys saw people.
  • At the end of the 1970s: More complex scenes appeared in some science fiction CGI movies. “The Black Hole” and “Alien” are the most outstanding examples. In the 1980s, CGI became more and more popular in film.
  • The 1990’s: Scenes with high complexity achieved high smoothness and reality. In Jurassic Park (1993), they created dinosaurs to life by mixing real actors, animatronics, and CGI.

At present, CGI technology is essential in most movies. “The Avengers” series and “Guardians of the Galaxy” are the most famous examples, with over 2000 visual effects shots. The technique has reached its peak and continuously improves.

12 Essential Departments to Make a CGI Pole

There are many methods to create one. They can use 2D pixel-based images and transform flat triangles and quadrangles into 3d shapes. Another modern technique is “green screen” (compositing) technology that can make scenes and characters look more natural.The process of making a CGI pole is highly complicated. Here are 12 key departments participating in creating CGI.

Art Department

Art Department
Art Department

They will turn the vision and brief into conceivable concepts. The concept often includes multiple artworks to demonstrate the appearance. Thanks to this department, the team can understand the project well and indicate essential techniques.


This team takes over the step of creating the first 3d representation before adding the final visual effects. They will build low-quality versions of the shots. Then, the director can choose appropriate camera angles.

Asset Department

Asset Department
Asset Department

It includes 3d modeling and 3d rendering. Artists make 3d models and add textures, lights, colors, etc., to make the scene real. With a good asset department, it is much cheaper than filming an actual scene that is unreal or too expensive.

Research and Development

This department is responsible for researching, building, and optimizing high-performance software to build CGI. They are often CGI software masters who can keep the whole process smooth and quick.


Animation creation is to add motion to the objects. This step is time-consuming. Artists have to pay attention to tiny details to demonstrate the movements as realistically as possible. 


The role of a matchmove artist is the same as a real cameraman. Instead of a real camera, they use a virtual one. Following the director’s guidelines, they can bring Realistic and vivid frames.

FX Simulation

FX Simulation
FX Simulation

Their responsibility is to make the background and surroundings follow the project’s vision. They create fire, water, trees, explosions, bridges, sky, clouds, etc. They take over both designs and add FX animation.


The artists add lights based on camera angles and existing illumination. The direction of virtual lighting and live-action elements must be the same to bring a realistic feel.

Matte paint

Matte paint makers are great painters. They can create gorgeous and lively landscapes that do not exist in real life, such as ancient cities, massive castles, the universe, stars, etc. The matte paint creation might need both traditional and digital techniques.


In a game or a movie, characters move in a lot of background. The rotoscoping step is to create smooth animation from the current background to the following one. Besides, artists have to keep the character’s actions natural. 


Visual Effects compositing is combining two or multiple images into a single image. They will blend all elements in a shot, including live-action, mattes, lights, animations, etc. The final result is lively and realistic.


This department is to manage the project and the team. Making schedules, balancing the budget, hiring and running human resources, etc., are their duties. Some most essential roles of the production team are VFX Producer, Production Manager, and Production Coordinator.

How Do You Learn To Create CGI?

How Do You Learn To Create CGI?
Schedule enough time to learn CGI

Learning to create CGI may take months of hard work. There are two common ways for you to start:

  • Self-learning at home: You can stay enthusiastic when discovering new knowledge. But the vast knowledge and high level of difficulty may make you confused. Be patient and keep your spirits up.
  • Take part in a CGI or VFX course: There are various online and offline courses out there for starters. Investing an amount of money will help you approach the mindset properly and save time. 

*Tips: If you do choose to study a qualification in computer programming, then be sure to contact or visit the relevant education providers to find out whether the course has any of the latest training technologies available.It is up to you when choosing a method to start. Just select the best appropriate for your goals and your needs.


Hopefully, this article has given you a clear overview of “What is a CGI pole?” or “What does CGI mean?”. If you still have questions about this topic, don’t hesitate to consult our 3D Product Rendering Services or contact us via email for the fastest support.

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