Is VFX and Video Editing Same?

When it comes to the world of digital media, there are several terms that may seem interchangeable, but in reality, they are quite distinct from one another. One such example is VFX and video editing.

While both of these terms are related to video production, they are not the same thing. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at VFX and video editing and examine their differences.

What is VFX?

VFX stands for Visual Effects. Simply put, VFX involves creating artificial imagery or manipulating existing footage to create a particular effect. These effects can be anything from adding explosions to creating an entire fantasy world.

Examples of VFX:

  • Green screen compositing
  • Matte painting
  • Computer-generated imagery (CGI)
  • Rotoscoping
  • 3D modeling and animation

VFX artists use specialized software like Adobe After Effects, Nuke, Fusion, or Maya to create these effects.

What is Video Editing?

Video editing is the process of manipulating and rearranging video shots to create a complete story or message. It involves taking raw footage and turning it into a coherent final product through various techniques such as trimming clips, adding transitions between shots, color correction, sound mixing and more.

The different types of video editing:

  • Linear Editing: This type of editing used to be the norm before digital video became widespread. Linear editors would physically cut and splice film together in a linear fashion.
  • Non-Linear Editing: This type of editing has become the standard with the advent of digital technology.

    Non-linear editors use software applications like Adobe Premiere Pro or Final Cut Pro to manipulate and edit video footage on a computer.

  • Offline Editing: This type of editing is done with lower-quality footage to save time and resources. It’s used for rough edits, and a final version is created using higher-quality footage.
  • Online Editing: This type of editing is the final stage in the editing process and uses high-quality footage. The aim is to create a polished final product that can be exported in various formats.

In summary, VFX involves creating artificial imagery or manipulating existing footage, while video editing involves rearranging and manipulating existing footage to create a complete story or message. The two terms may be related, but they are distinct from each other.


Knowing the difference between VFX and video editing is important if you’re planning on pursuing a career in digital media. Both VFX artists and video editors play crucial roles in the creation of compelling visual content. Understanding their differences will help you decide which field to specialize in or which professional service you require for your project.