I was contacted recently by a student of visual effects who asked a lot of interesting questions which triggered this little rant:
In your work you will need to communicate with lots of people: matte-painters, compositors, texture artists, 3d modelers, lighters, and more. So get broad. You don’t need to be able to do their jobs, but have an overview of how they work and learn their terminology. this common language will help all of you get work done together. And that’s the important thing: get the work done. Don’t fetishize the software, just make images, deliver and then go home and be with your loved-ones.
This VFX stuff is interesting. But don’t let it eat your life. Balance is essential.