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Anywhere you look today you will see beautifully rendered 3D animation and visual effects. From advertising and video games to your favourite movies and T.V. shows. If our world is so saturated with computer-generated imagery, why then do we not hear more from people working in the Visual Effects and 3D Animation industry? How do people transition from contemplating game or movie design to living their dream career with an animation job?

Computer generated animation is more than one role

The first thing to know about working as an artist in visual effects and animation is that it isn’t a single role. As the detail and quality of art continues to break boundaries, the amount of people needed to generate spectacular moments for a film and game increases exponentially. You could be doing specialty work on character animation, environmental modeling or fx simulation, or maybe your focus is on 2D art, concept art or character design. Specialisation begins in the classroom, finding out where your talent lies comes from experimentation and discussion with your teacher.

How much can you expect to earn?

Like most industries, salary is subject to your experience, demand for your specialisation and number of applicants versus available work. To help get an idea of what you might earn as a 3D animator and visual effects artist, we have compiled a list of roles and their average annual pay.

Role Entrance Level Experienced Artist (6+ Years)
Game Artist (Generalist) $45,000 $95,000
Concept Artist $45,000 $85,000
Character Artist $45,000 $70,000
Environmental Artist $55,000 $100,000
Technical Effects Artist $50,000 $105,000
Character Animator $40,000 $100,000
 VFX Compositor $50,000 $105,000

 

career 3d animation online

What about career progression?

Like all businesses, as animation and game design companies grow, so grows the demand for (and higher paid) Lead Designers or even one day a position as Art Director. The global film and game industries show healthy projections for the coming years, with games generating $91 billion worldwide in 2016 with forecasts for this number to reach $128.5 billion by 2020.

Where can I work with a qualification in Animation and Visual Effects?

Employment can come from large or small firms, big production companies with names you recognise or boutique studios that tackle super specialised work.

If you are wanting to get a job at PIXAR you may want to specialise on character acting animation. If you are wanting to get a job at Weta Digital you may want to focus on creature animation. To read more about the value in becoming a specialist, check out this blog.

If you are contemplating a life in visual effects and animation, we can help. At CG Spectrum Online Animation School, our role is not just to teach you the skills you need to work as a professional animator, but to link you with a mentor to guide you, and expose you to employers looking for the next generation of design talent.

Want to know more about our online classes for 3D Animation? Contact us here, at CG Spectrum The Online School for Animation, VFX & Game Design and kickstart you dream career.

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Nick Fredin

Author Nick Fredin

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