1 Introduction

‘Visual effects’ is a relatively new term and describes what used to be more appropriately called ‘special photographic effects’. When ‘optical printers’ started to be used extensively in the field, the term ‘optical effects’ was adopted for a short time; then, in the early days of television when the signal went out live, it was called ‘electronic’; with the use of video post-production it became ‘video’; and then, finally, with the invasion of computers, it was termed ‘digital’ effects. During this ever-changing background the term ‘special visual effects’ and then simply ‘visual effects’ (VFX) was increasingly adopted to describe what had once been called photographic effects. However, this term was no longer appropriate, since ...

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