If you’ve enjoyed drawing from a young age, moving on to computer animation or 3D printing as technology has become more advanced, you may be wondering whether you can parlay your 3D design skills into a freelance position that allows you to complete projects from the comfort of your home.
Fortunately, for those with the skills to tackle this field, it can be financially and personally rewarding. Read on to learn more about becoming a freelance 3D graphics artist.
Get some experience
Breaking into this field can require a few key things:
A portfolio or showreel
Far more important than your education when it comes to obtaining a 3D graphics artist job is your showreel – a sample of your best work that serves as a visual resume.
You may want to seek outside help in putting together a strong portfolio to improve your odds of landing higher-paying projects.
Computer or technology certifications
With today’s tech-heavy film world, being able to demonstrate your computer knowledge is crucial — and it’s much easier to provide a certificate showing proficiency in a program or area rather than trying to explain your knowledge in a cover letter for a job interview.
Play to your strengths
This field isn’t for everyone, and you’ll need a couple of skills in order to make a good living in this role as a freelancer.
Being a freelancer requires the flexibility to adjust your budget and working hours to accommodate a variety of projects. At times, you may find yourself so busy that you don’t even have time to spend the money that’s rolling in; during slower periods, you may worry about earning enough to cover your basic bills.
Being able to dial down major expenses with short notice and remaining current with technology can ensure you never go without a regular income for too long.
The 3D animation world is one in which stability is never constant – and without the curiosity to keep on top of new advances in technology and industry trends, you may find yourself being left behind.
As long as you’re curious and always willing to keep learning, you’ll never hit an impenetrable wall in this field.
By keeping your skills current in other areas of the film and art industries, you’ll be better equipped to handle a freelance lifestyle.
You may want to try a stint as a graphic artist or logo designer for nearby small businesses to network at a local level. 3D artists are also in a good position to teach community college courses or even assist directors on large-scale film animation projects. Learning more about these positions can give you some leverage when it comes to applying for high-level jobs.