Graphics researchers waiting in the water fountain line at SIGGRAPH Yellowstone. Computer graphics as a field is broad, deep, complex, and intimidating. More than half a century of rapid progress driven by academic research and industry practices underly it. Parts delve pretty far into physics, math, signal processing, systems programming (and more). And performance is always at a premium—so simple, straightforward techniques are often not possible, and high-level programming abstractions not usable.
Source: Drinking from the Firehose: Learning Computer Graphics Techniques and Programming – Mike Turitzin